Mondulkiri – Kratie
Set off from Phnom Penh this morning on a scenic drive to Mondulkiri, a journey of approximately 6.5 hours (370 km) with a stop for lunch along the way. Admire the picturesque rice fields, buffalos being washed, land being plowed, and other typical village life, as well as rubber plantations. Feel free to stop at any time to take photos!
Hub of remote, fascinating Mondulkiri province, Sen Monorom lies close to the spectacular Bou Sra Waterfalls as well as numerous ethnic minority villages, a heartwarming elephant rescue center “Elephant Valley Project”, forest hiking, Gibbon watching, etc.
Upon arrival in Sen Monorom town, proceed to your hotel for check-in. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.
Overnight in Sen Monorom, Mondulkiri (3 nights)
Start your day early with a visit to a local market. Next, journey to Pou Lung village, home to the Phnong indigenous community. A local Phnong guide will explain their culture and way of life, helping you to interact with the people. From the village, continue to Bou Sra Waterfall, Cambodia’s most scenic two-tier waterfall. Cascading 10m on the first tier and 25m on the second, it is a popular spot for both locals and tourists. You may also opt for a zipline through Bousra Ecopark, which offers stunning views of the waterfall and surrounding jungle. After a refreshing swim in the natural pool at the bottom of the waterfall, enjoy a simple local lunch on picnic mats with stunning views.
Afternoon, you will visit a coffee plantation to savor a cup of fresh coffee, stroll through the grounds, and learn a bit about coffee cultivation. Your next stop is a hilltop known for its breathtaking view of the Samot Cheur (Ocean of Trees), a viewpoint overlooking an emerald forest to the east. As you stand on the summit and gaze out over the rolling hills, you will feel as if you are at sea, with the hills resembling waves.
Sunset View from Wat Phnom Doh Kromom
Looming over the northeast corner of the airstrip, Wat Phnom Doh Kromom has Mondulkiri’s best sunset vista, where a wooden platform lets you take in the views over Sen Monorom.
Overnight in Sen Monorom, Mondulkiri
The Elephant Valley Project (ELIE) is a unique experience that allows you to trek into the elephants’ natural jungle habitat and observe them behaving naturally. There is no riding, tricks, shows, or stress—just hours of walking with these amazing animals and learning about their stories. If you love elephants and care about their welfare and future, ELIE is the place for you.
At 7:30 a.m., you are taken on a 30-minute drive to the Elephant Valley Project (ELIE), a sanctuary for elephants within a 1,500-hectare reserve where the elephants can roam and learn how to be semi-wild elephants again. Here you will hike into the Cambodian jungle and spend a full day observing two different elephant herds in their natural habitat. Follow them as they graze, play, and wander through their forest home. Or, you may spend the afternoon volunteering to join locals, staff, and other volunteers on the many projects it takes to keep the sanctuary running such as planting trees, building bridges, or preparing food for the elephants. Enjoy the buffet lunch in the base camp at midday. Return to your hotel at 5.00 p.m.
Overnight in Sen Monorom, Mondulkiri
After breakfast, travel to Kratie Province (216 km, 4 hours). Kratie is the best place to see the rare Irrawaddy dolphin on the Mekong River. Be sure to try the famous bamboo sticky rice “Kralan”, a local delicacy. Have lunch at a local restaurant in Kratie.
After lunch, continue to the village of Sambo to visit Wat Sorsor Mouy Roy, also known as the 100 Pillars Pagoda. This important historical and cultural building is famous for its legend involving a princess and a crocodile. Afterward, head to the village of Kampi, one of the best places to view the majestic Mekong Irrawaddy dolphins. Board a local boat and cruise to the preferred habitats of these rare and fascinating creatures. Once you spot a dolphin, your boat driver will turn off the engine so you can drift in silence, following the dolphins for 1-1.5 hours.
Early evening, drive to the charming riverside town of Chhlong (52 km, 1 hour) for an overnight stay. Chhlong is a tiny village with many French colonial houses, including the boutique hotel Relais de Chhlong.
Overnight in Chhlong, Kratie
After breakfast, take a brief stroll around town if desired, including a visit to the bustling morning market.
Travel to Kampong Cham (82 km, 1.30 hours) and stop to visit Nokor Bachey temple. This charming and interesting temple features beautiful wall paintings adorning a modern Buddhist pagoda built inside the grounds of an Angkor-era temple. It is the only temple of such design in Cambodia. Have lunch at a local restaurant in Kampong Cham.
Option 1: Continue to Phnom Penh (125 km, 3 hours)
Option 2: Continue to Kampong Thom province (105 km, 2 hours) for an overnight stop to discover the Sambor Prei Kuk – an Archaeological Site of Ancient Ishanapura before heading to Siem Reap, the gateway to the marvelous temples of Angkor. Or, directly drive to Siem Reap (256 km, 5 hours).
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Mountain View of Mondulkiri
Pou Lung village
Bou Sra Waterfall
Coffee Plantation in Mondulkiri
The Elephant Valley Project (ELIE)
Bathing for Elephant in Mondulkiri
Irrawaddy Dolphins in Kratie
Irrawaddy Dolphins in Kratie
Nokor Bachey temple
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Explore the bustling Cambodian capital and understand Cambodia’s tumultuous past.
Head south for a taste of the good life, the perfect riverside retreat to relax and recharge.
Uncover the the glory days of the Khmer empire while exploring the temples of Angkor.
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