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Forget about the beaches and cities! This peaceful riverside town in Cambodia is a breath of fresh air. With Kampot’s main industries being pepper and salt production, tourism hasn’t taken over this authentic south coast spot, so you’re free to wander the sleepy streets without being constantly haggled. Hallelujah! You’ll definitely feel more like a visitor than a tourist here. Wherever you go, keep an eye on the majestic architecture throughout the streets. To see it for yourself and soak up the chilled Cambodian vibe, check out our range of Kampot hotels below.
Start your Kampot escapades in the Old French Quarter, surrounded by gorgeous French colonial architecture. Then wander or ride around to explore the rest of the old colonial era town, one of Indochina’s finest. Explore the streets of Chinese style shophouses, the war ravaged main bridge and the provincial governor’s residence hailing from the early 20th century. Make a stop by the Durian Statue at the massive roundabout in the city centre, then pick up some fresh durian to indulge in tasty Southeast Asian fruit. If you’re keen to explore the less-populated east bank, there are two bridges across the river to take you there.
Also be sure to explore the Kampot River promenade on the town’s western edge. This is where the excitement happens! But even here, life goes at a leisurely and captivating pace. Stand guard at the water’s edge for the beautiful sunsets – fishing boats headed to sea for their nightly catch make the low-light scenery all the more beautiful. This really is a great town to walk around so make the most of it! The structured street layout makes it so easy to get around and know where you’re going.
If you’re keen to check out the countryside though, switch to a motorcycle! A trip to the eerie ghost town of Bokor Hill Station is highly recommended. A former resort for French colonists, this is one place that encapsulates the traumatic events of Cambodia’s history in the 20th century. Exploring the inside of the hotel and casino buildings is eerily exciting, and outside the view extends all the way to the sea. To get there, just follow National Highway 3 west (the only major roadway) for seven kilometres, keeping an eye out for cows and goats, then turn right onto Road 32. Watch the scenery change as you ride through the Damrei Mountains, where thick forest hugs both sides of the road, which gets more and more rocky – aka more fun! Be sure to check out Bokor Lake while you’re there too! Development is beginning to move into the area, so beware this unique attraction may change in the coming decade.
For a different kind of trip out of Kampot, travel east. The area between Kampot and Kep is dotted with limestone caves and temples amongst the paddy fields. Check out Phnom Chhnork near Wat Ang Sdok, the most spectacular cave complex full of stalactites and stalagmites, home to the remains of a brilliantly-preserved brick temple of the Funan Kingdom dating back to the 7th century. Next up: continue on to Kep for some beachside fun and relaxing. Be sure to try the amazing fresh seafood, like some local crab, which you can season to taste with the local salt and pepper.
Loving the sound of Kampot? Of course you are! Come and experience the chilled local vibes, the spectacular colonial architecture and the many great sights within easy reach. With our flights to Cambodia and Kampot accommodation, this corner of Cambodia will reset your holiday pace without being boring.
Hotels in Kampot start at AU$19 per night. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.