Explore Bokor National Park, Cambodia | Cruise Mekong River

Explore Bokor National Park, Cambodia

Bokor National Park

Bokor National Park was established by Royal decree in 1993. Named after its shape, Bokor is part of the Elephant Mountain range. The park spans an area of about 1580 square kilometers of protected, dense primary rainforest, bordering the Cardamom Mountain Range in the East, Kirirom National Park in the North and ending less than a kilometer from the coastline in the South. The entrance to the park is roughly 12km from Kampot, to the west of the river. There is a petrol/gas station at the entrance to the park and it is highly advisable to fill your tank down here as I didn’t see anywhere to buy fuel along the way, nor at the top. Cambodia Discovery 8D – 7N

Bokor National Park

Bokor National Park

The main attraction in Bokor National Park is the old French hill station which is established by the French as a hill station in 1925, Bokor has since been abandoned twice, during World War II and the Khmer Rouge period. Bokor Hill Station is a mountaintop collection of buildings (hotel & casino, church, royal residence and more). If you pay attention, you may see the ‘Guardian of the Forest’; a rock formation along the road resembling a face with a prominent nose. There are plenty spectacular views of the coast, jungle and Kampot along the way. Cambodia travel packages

Bokor National Hill

Bokor National Hill

Some buildings have disappeared or been repurposed during the new complex development, but walking through the crumbling casino/hotel and other buildings dotted across the Bokor ridge is still a little spooky, particularly if one of the frequent mists roll in. Views from the top of the casino across the sea to Phu Quoc island are spectacular (so long as that mist keeps away). Smaller, overgrown villas provide a more intimate insight into life-that-was on the hill, and you’ll also find these days a concrete mushroom sunshade and post office.

Popokvil, meaning swirling clouds, is possibly named after the lingering mist over its two tiers. The waterfall is set in lush jungle and is located a couple of kilometers away from the Hill Station site. The falls run dry at the end of the dry season, but swell up during the rainy season. It is a great place for a swim on a sweltering day. The tiny plant appears to be a flower, and can be found in white, pink and lilac.

Popokvil waterfall

Popokvil waterfall

There is great nature waiting and an incredible panorama over the coast and ocean from the burned ruins of the casino at the top of the hill.

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