Sen Monorom, Cambodia – out of the beaten track.
In the north-eastern part of Cambodia lies a beautiful town called Sen Monorom, the capital of Mondulkiri province. The landscape in the town differs from other parts of Cambodia. The town is set at 800m above the sea level, with steep hillsides and much cooler climate than the rest of the country.
In to the Monorom
I arrived to Sen Monorom by a minibus from Kratie with my friend Tal, it took us about five hours and the price of the ride was 8USD. This is the first picture i took after arriving, i call it “stuff’a’van”, check it out!
Tal and I had to stuff ourselves in a guesthouse, after a short search around we got a motorbike taxi to a guesthouse called “Tree Lodge” for the price of 1USD, the ride took us about 1 minute from the center of the town. The guesthouse was a-m-a-z-i-n-g, small wooden bungalows with private toilet, hot shower, comfy beds and a mosquito net on top of it. There was a restaurant there too, you can try local food of the Bunong people (The Bunong are the indigenous people of Mondulkiri, although considered a ‘minority’ they in fact make up the majority of the population of Mondulkiri Province) and some regular Khmer (predominant ethnic group in Cambodia, approx 90% of the country), beef Lok Lak for me please. The pictures are from around the guesthouse bungalows.
When evening time comes, it gets cool in Sen Monorom, be sure to get a sweater before you arrive. The town is quite and dark at night-time, plus it is swarming with street dogs, be aware. There is a good side for that too, all the tourists stay to hangout in the guesthouse, you can easily socialize and find partners for different activities around Sen Monorom. Popular activities are: volunteering in NGOs, trekking around the town and the province, motorbike sightseeing. Tal chose the trekking and i decided to go for the motorbike sightseeing tour.
The motorbike tour
The cost of the tour was 15USD after bargain, I was picked by the driver from the lobby of the guesthouse at 8:30AM and off we went. The weather was perfect, Sen Monorom has super clean air, ahh that feeling of air hitting your face on a motorbike, priceless.
Sen Monorom waterfall was the first stop. Many local people were hanging out around the falls, no tourists were seen. The falls were not that impressive, but still i highly recommend a visit. The area had shops, local food stands and many beggars.
After visiting Sen Monorom waterfall the driver took me to a river near by, there was a small shrine in the middle of nowhere.
We had a stop in a coffee plantation, where i got myself and my driver a nice cup of local coffee. The roads around the province were not the best (as you saw in the first image of the post), but they had their own magic.
The last stop was a sightseeing spot on a hill, where i could see the “sea of forests“. The Mondulkiri region is full of forests, unfortunately they are getting cut off and local people don’t even benefit from that. Cambodia is still one of the most corrupt countries in Asia, i hope one day the people will change it over there.
That was the last station of the tour, the driver got me back to the guesthouse and i got my bus to Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia.
Thx for reading again! 😀