Kampot to Phnom Penh via Kep, Takeo and Phnom Chissor

The plan for today is to ride from Kampot to Phnom Penh via Kep, and to visit Phnom Chissor (Phnom Chissor, Phnom Chisor, Phnom Chi Sou) in Takeo Province on the way. It is raining heavily by the time we get up. Distance and road are not a big deal but the prospect of doing this trip in strong rain is unpleasant. It keeps raining while we have extensive breakfast.

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From Kep to Kampot, Bokor Mountain and National Park by Motorbike, including Waterfall, Abandoned Resort and Casino

The plan for today is to ride from Kep to Kampot, have breakfast there and visit a number of places in Bokor National Park, such as the waterfall and the abandoned French resort with the Casino. If there is still time we want to use it to explore other roads around the Phnom Popok and into the Elephant Mountains (Chuor Phnum Damrei).

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Phnom Penh to Kep by Motorbike via National Roads 3 and 31

My buddy Uwe has just arrived in Phnom Penh for a joint 4 weeks Southeast Asia trip. Our somewhat ambitious plan is to start with a three day motorbike trip to Kep and Kampot in Cambodia, while our visas for Laos, Burma, Vietnam and are being processed in Phnom Penh, and later to visit all these countries in that order.

I have been to Kampot and Kep (Kaeb) a number of times (Kampot and Kep – Ein Tag am Meer, Phnom Penh to Kampot, New Year at Bokor, Caves in Kampot, Sunset in Kep, Swimming at Toek Chhou, By Motorbike from Sihanoukville to Phnom Penh via Kampot), but always went on National Road 3. According to the map, National Road 31, which departs from Road 3 about half way from Phnom Penh to Kampot and leads more directly to Kep, is under construction. Contrary to the map, a number of people told us that the road has long been finished and now makes for a comfortable ride.

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Phnum Baset, Longvaek and Becky’s Jump into Tonly Bassac River, all by Motorbike

It is time for a nice and easy day trip and Becky joins me to visit Phnum Baset (Phnom Baset) which is located just about 30 km north of Phnom Penh. We also want to visit Longvaek, which is located 20 km further north and used to be the capital of Cambodia before the court moved to Udong. The plan is then to cross the Tonle Sap with the Ferry close to Udong and ride back to Phnom Penh either on National Road 6 or – if we have still time and it does not rain – to cross the Mekong with the Ferry at Praek Anhchan and ride back on the secondary road along the eastern bank of the Mekong.

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Prey Veng to Phnom Penh by Motorbike, Ba Phnom, Preah Vihear Chann, Neak Luong

We have breakfast in the Mittapheap Restaurant before getting on the bike. We leave on road 11 towards Neak Luong. The plan is to follow this road only for about 10-12 kilometres and then a secondary road (317) for about 25-30km to Ba Phnom (Ba Phnum, Phnom Chi-gaht). According to the Lonely Planet, Ba Phnom is one of the earliest religious and cultural sites in the Kingdome of Cambodia, dating back to the 5th century and the time of the mysterious Funan. It remained an important place of pilgrimage for kings of the subsequent empires of Chenla and Angkor and continued to be a place of spiritual significance into the 19th century, but its past conceals a darker side of human sacrifice. According to French records, human sacrifices continued into the protectorate and were only finally stamped out in 1872. The guide book also says that “It is only really worth the detour for those who have a keen interest in early Cambodian history, as for the casual visitor there is unfortunately little to see”.

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By Motorbike: Phnom Penh to Prey Veng via Kampong Cham, Phnom Pros & Phnom Srei, Rubber Plantations and more

This weekend it is time to go on an overnight trip to the provinces. Maraile is ready to go and we plan to visit Prey Veng and to go there via Kampong Cham. Prey Veng is not so far from Phnom Penh but not connected to any national road. Accordingly, it is said to be a very provincial and sleepy town. The road distances are from Phnom Penh to Kampong Cham 129km and from Kampong Cham to Prey Veng 80km. Prey Veng to Phnom Penh is 90km.

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Phnom Penh to Takeo by Motorbike and to Angkor Borei by Fast Boat

Today the plan is to go to Takeo (Takaev) again and to visit Angkor Borei and Phnom Da (Phnum Dai) with two friends: Maraile and Becky. Becky is a motorbike enthusiast while Maraile did not yet discover her passion for bikes. While I visited Angkor Borei by motorbike a few weeks ago, we want to do the trip from Takeo to Angkor Borei with the fast boat.

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Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville by Minibus

It is weekend again and I decided to visit Sihanoukville once more, after I have been here only few weeks ago. I also decided to travel by public transport this time, mostly for convenience. It is too late to catch the early buses so I chose to go by minibus. Initially I go to the Central Market where I don’t find a minibus to Sihanoukville but people who show me the place from which these buses leave.

One minibus is about to leave. I pay for two seats, again for convenience (at 5$ each, which is far too expensive, which I learn later on, anyway).

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Kampong Cham: Wat Hanchey and Ny’s wedding

The plan for today is to visit Wat Hanchey (Han Chey) in the morning, attend my friend Ny’s wedding in the afternoon and ride back to Phnom Penh before it gets dark. Yesterday I agreed with the guesthouse guy that we would meet at 7:30am and that he would show me the way to Wat Hanchey. The guide books say that Wat Hanchey is a beautifully located hill top pagoda that was an important religious centre during the Chenla period. They also suggest it is easy to visit Wat Hanchey, which is about 25 km from Kampong Cham town, by boat. Anyway, I take the bike for convenience and time efficiency.

We start at the agreed time without any breakfast and head north along the Mekong. After very few kilometres we are riding on a narrow and bumpy dirt road. The road leads along the Mekong through a couple of villages in a nice and rural setting. We are not the only ones on the roads. There are all kinds of vehicles, like oxcarts, minibuses and bicycles.

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Phnom Penh to Kampong Cham, Wat Nokor

My friend Sok Ny gets married this weekend in Kampong Cham and invited me on the occasion of this event to join in the celebration. I decide to attend on Sunday and visit a number of places in around Kampong Cham town on Saturday evening and Sunday morning.

Today I just want to travel to Kampong Cham, which is about 129km from Phnom Penh, check in at some accommodation and visit Wat Nokor (Angkor Bahjay) before it is dark.

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