Bokor Hill Station

The Bokor Hill Station on Phnom Bokor (Bokor Mountain) is a mountaintop collection of buildings (hotel, casino, church, royal residence, etc.), constructed by French authorities in the early 1920s as a complement to the already popular Kep resort area. In the 1990s a travel author referred to Bokor as ‘the eeriest place in the world’, and it lives up to that reputation. In its time, Bokor was an elegant getaway for French officials and foreign visitors to old Indochina – a classic colonial ‘hill station’ located in the mountains to allow foreigner visitors accustomed to more temperate climes to escape the tropical heat. But years of neglect have left ghostly ruins – vestiges of a different age, often shrouded in fog and clouds. One thing that the years have not changed is the absolutely spectacular view of the coast and the cool (sometimes cold) mountain air. Bokor Mountain is heavily jungled and trip beyond Bokor, including jungle trekking, can be arranged. Wild elephants and other jungle animal are occasionally seen. The is a small guesthouse near the hill station with rooms, good toilets and very few other services. If you are going to overnight on Bokor, take food as the guesthouse has little to offer. 37km from Kampot. You take route No 3 west from Kampot to the well-marked turnoff. The entrance fee at the ranger station about a kilometer up the road. Badly broken pavement all the way up the mountain. Easiest in a 4WD. For experienced riders, it’s a moderate dirt bike ride. It is painful but possible on a small 100cc bike. It can get cold on the mountain, especially at night. Bring warm clothes.

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