The sleepy riverside town of Kampot is an essential stop on the Cambodian itinerary. Slightly off the beaten path, the town is home to some stunning landscape and fascinating architecture. Furthermore, the absence of a major tourism industry offers travelers invaluable insight into local life. Whether relaxing by the river or embarking on an all-day outing, you’ll take pleasure in the subtle charm of Kampot. Here is a list of the top 10 attractions in Kampot, Cambodia:
1) The Town of Kampot
The absence of vehicle traffic makes this an ideal town to explore on bicycle. You’ll find plenty of charm in Kampot—from a massive durian roundabout, to the slightly dilapidated colonial-style buildings. Locals are friendly and eager to talk to foreigners. There’s also a small expat community that has invested in the city. Foreign-owned businesses include a pizza parlor and a movie theater.
2) Bokor National Park
Located about 30 minutes outside of town, Bokor Mountain possesses some killer views of the surrounding countryside. The park can be accessed via tuk-tuk or motorbike, as paved roads provide easy access to the park. There is talk of a erecting a major hotel on the mountain, so make sure to check out the gorgeous, undeveloped landscape while it lasts.
3) Riverside Guesthouses
Many visitors are drawn to Kampot’s laid-back atmosphere. Most guesthouses are located on the river, presenting ample opportunity to sit back and appreciate the quiet beauty of the scenery. Those looking for nightlife will be delighted to learn that guesthouses frequently feature live music. There are also a string of bars in town.
4) Kep Seaside
The beaches of Kep are only a 30-minute drive from Kampot and make for a pleasant day trip. The area is fairly quiet and doesn’t witness many foreign tourists. Enjoy the famous fresh crab at the local market or at one of the restaurants located along the water.
5) Old Ruins
While visiting Bokor National Park make sure to check to out the ruins of the French-built Le Bokor Palace Hotel and the old Catholic church. The somewhat eerie abandoned buildings give visitors a glimpse into French colonization and also house some impressive views. Kep is also home to dozens of colonial-style villas you can tour via motorbike.