Indulge yourself into Kep – the city of beaches and relaxing (Updated!)
Visit the serene Sambor Prei Kuk in Kampong Thom, Cambodia Is there any interesting thing in Kratie, Cambodia? The beautiful capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh Cambodia travel experience: what I have learned after an excellent trip The coastal city of Kep in Cambodia is being familiar to lots of tourists. Kampot province is located very closely to Kep city so it is reasonable to have a short trip, especially…
The coastal city of Kep in Cambodia is being familiar to lots of tourists. Kampot province is located very closely to Kep city so it is reasonable to have a short trip, especially combining with a tour to Mekong Delta in Vietnam.
From Xa Xia border gate, going more 20 km is to arrive Kep coastal city – Cambodia. Sparse population are on two roadsides. Toward to sea are stretching salt fields along the national highway. Far about 5 – 7 km from the city center, cars run up and down steeps, very interesting. Two roadsides are successive cemented fences which are old but very nice, each of them has different style.
Kep city was built in 1908 under the French domination and upgraded to become the coastal resorts from 1960. Kep name is explained from Le Cap in French language- means cape jutting into the sea. During the Khmer Rouge period, the works, resorts of the French in Kep city were destroyed a lot, but there still have vestiges of a golden period of this beautiful city in the past. Kep still keeps many symbols, signboards and architecture from French domination.
The road hugging coast in Kep is 5 – 6 km long. One side is the sea, another side is a winding mountain road with green color form head to toe. Kep beach slopes gently with light waves and clear blue water. Many pretty resorts and accommodations for tourist to take a rest after swimming covered roofs by straw and leaves are placed along the beach.
The scenery is peaceful and sleazy. Along the road behind the beach is an empty area with many vendors. The beach is often crowded on weekends and pretty deserted on weekdays. The road is through Kep, along the coast and turn back. Cars and small trucks have to pay travelling expense to move on this road. Motorcycles and pedestrians are free. This is one-way road and Cambodian traffic police often fined violators.
Samot Reang Sey pagoda is a can-not-be ignored tourism destination when visiting Kep city. The pagoda is located far 2 km from the city center. This is the Cambodian pagoda with attractive characteristic architecture. Kep also has “Bunny” island which is about 30 minutes from the center of the city about 30 by ship. The island has white sandy beach and coconut trees; the water is quite clear, visitors can swim with snorkel around the rocks. There is no coral under water but lots of fish. Currently, there are a few simple guesthouses on the island.
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Kampot province is far about 25 km from the Kep city. The road to Kampot runs through alternative mangrove forest and stone. Kampot province is an old small capital next to Chhou Teuk river bank. There are many architectural relics from French domination period with 100-year date. Prek Kampong bay or river of Kampong Bay separates Kampot province into two sections connected by the ancient Kampot bridge and a totally new bridge called Kampong Bay.
Kampot people live mainly by farming, growing durian, pepper, and other fruits and mining salt. The local landscapes are still very pristine and peaceful.
Bokor tour is probably the most popular tour in Kampot. Bokor Hill Station on Phnom Bokor (Bokor Mountain) is a complex of buildings built in French domination including hotels, casinos, churches, and royal palaces built in the beginning of 1920. In the decade of 1990, Bokor was compared to “the most exotic places in the world” and “ghost town” because of its ruinous and mysterious look.
Bokor at prosperous time was used to be a resort of the French’s officials and foreign tourists in Indochina. It is situated on hill with mild climate to avoid the heat. It was abandoned several years so it had been seriously ruined. However, visitors can see spectacular scenery of beach and enjoy fresh air. Bokor Mountain is covered with jungle and you can discover that forest. Many travelers have seen elephant and wild animal. Currently, local authority are planning to restore this relic.
Kampong Trach is a small town near Vietnam border. On the way from Kampot to this town, it will go through several beautiful villages. Now, there is a byroad to Kampong Trach town by going along Voar Mountain which used to be the last refuge of the Khmer Rouge. The attractions of this place are many limestone caves and tunnels running to the nearby mountain. Pagodas and temples were built in the caves so tourists can take nice photos. When visiting this place, you should wear flashlights and shoes.
Far about 12 km from Kampot province is Teuk Chhou stream. Teuk Chhou means flowing spring by Cambodian language. It is large, long, which divides into different forest parties; that scenery and green trees on two sides creates an ideal fresh landscape for tourists to visit. It is also a tourism destination of Kampot province serving tourists to rest and explore in hot season. There are stores and restaurants along the spring for tourist take a rest after swimming. Kampot province also has Teuk Chhou zoo which is about 12km in the northeast of the province. Like Kep city, all gateways to the city are also placed the cultural symbols. The statue of white horse placed in rotary reminds the legend of white horse saving the Cambodian prince. Kampot now has many great resorts such as Teuk Chhou, Preak Ampil, Bokor in order to develop resort business form.