Hiking in Cambodia

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Guest Post – Hiking in Cambodia

Any Cambodian holiday offers up many chances to trek and explore this incredible country. The landscape has it all: lush jungles, vast mountain ranges and many lakes and waterfalls to discover.

"When hiking in Cambodia through Kirirom National"

Photo by Hoorob

There are many choices of places to go hiking in Cambodia, but in the humidity, many of the jungle hikes are rather more arduous than others.

For an easy hike that will still fill you with wonder, head to one of the country’s many National Parks.

The Kirirom National Park is located in the south of the country and was Cambodia’s first official National Park. Situated amongst the Cardamom and Elephant Mountains, the park has a wealth of natural wonders to take in and being 675m above sea level, Kirirom has a cooler climate than other nearby and popular parks.

Covering over 80,000 acres, there certainly is so much to be explored as you hike through and the park also has a small visitors centre which you can visit before you head off to explore.

The best time to visit is November, just after the rainy season has ended which runs from May to October.

For an easy hike, take one of the many basic walking trails that explore the park and wind in many different directions around the park.

The trails take you up through the hills and whilst you walk, keep an eye out for the many animals that live in the park. Keep your eyes peeled for tigers and leopards roaming free and monkeys swinging from tree to tree.

The many nature walks are rather short and allow you to take in the many sights without tiring yourself out too quickly.

However, take care and stay to the paths as it’s easy to veer off and get lost!

"A steep hiking trail when hiking in Cambodia in summer"

Photo by Natala007

If you feel brave and want to take a more substantial hike around Kirirom, rangers located around the park will take you on a mountain hike. Some of the mountain treks can be rather steep so be prepared.

Head up Phnom Dat Chivit, also known as the End of the World Mountain, which will give you a stunning view of the mountain ranges that surround the place.

Lasting about four hours, the hike takes you through dense jungle, across lakes and past tribal camps. A ranger is essential to guide you on your hike.

At the base of the mountain, you take a walk down a set of steps which may take a while but your reward at the bottom more than makes up for that.

Lying beneath is a spectacular waterfall, with water gushing so loud that you’ll struggle to hear yourself think!

With so many different aspects of this beautiful country to discover, a journey to Kirirom will certainly give you many options for hiking through a Cambodian dream and will provide memories that will last you a lifetime.

Natalie Likness’ love of travel was introduced to her from an early age due to a trip abroad before she was even born! Having close family and making friends across the world, she has continued to travel ever since.  She wrote this post for Travel Indochina.

11 comments to Hiking in Cambodia

  • Eva

    I’ve been hiking in a number of tropical and sub-tropical climate zones (Borneo, Australia, Vanuatu, etc). There’s nothing to worry about providing you’re dressed appropriately (long sleeves and pants), adequately hydrated, have a guide and take it easy (and stop being afraid of the small critters on this planet). The plant world you get to see, the sounds and the atmosphere you experience, you won’t ever forget again. If you follow the guides’ advice about food and behaviour you’ll be fine. In fact, I enjoy this kind of hiking! Even when it rains, you don’t have to worry about taking a lot of clothes or getting cold (unless there’s different climatic requirements). If you are unfit you can only do short distances as the humidity takes it out of you but if you are reasonably fit and have good gear and a positive attitude, hey, go for it!

  • inderpal sokhey

    great scenery and views.

  • Head over beyond the guest posts, Tom. And thanks for dropping by.

  • Tom Stockwell

    A content farm post…sorry but an e-mail brought me here giving this as an example of a great blog post. This offers absolutely zero descriptive or anecdotal detail and is all information you could just get off a search engine. Has the writer even been to Cambodia? You wouldn’t know it.

    Come on, content is always much, much better than this “travel writing.”

  • Wish I could help out, Phil. But I’ve not been in that part of the world myself so I can’t offer you much tip. But I heard it’s the weather you need to consider there because it’s very humid and so you’ll have different peculiarities to consider, like dressing up properly to avoid getting the leeches on you.

  • Phil

    looking for some hiking opportunities around Siem Reap. Will endure the tours but prefers walking off the beaten path. Day hikes/ cycle rides, any advice appreciated.

  • All good questions, Carol. I know very little about South East Asia and have not done any hiking there. But I suppose wearing the right attire could protect you. Long light pants could do the trick. I also heard it’s terribly hot and humid there. Happy Cambodian hiking!

  • I really want to visit Cambodia sometime and hiking/trekking will be a must for me. What’s it like for leeches though and is there a good time to minimise or avoid them? I’m terrified of them!
    Carol/mountain coward

  • Most people who go to Cambodia do Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, and maybe Sihonouksville. Nice to have alternatives for travelers like me who like jungle hiking. This place sounds perfect for me.

  • Neither did I, Simon. But it seems a rather interesting place to hike, though I think the humidity is what’s going to hold me back.

  • This is a truly interesting post, as I never associated Cambodia with hiking. The hike at The End of the World Mountain sounds so fascinating…

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