Kampong Cham Cambodia - Top Picks for Attractions and Sights
The main draw in Kampong Cham is the ancient temples that sit just outside the city. Many of these predate the majestic Angkor but if you have had enough of temples in Cambodia then there is plenty more to keep you busy here. Just some of the other highlights include the rickety Bamboo Bridge as well as some stunning colonial architecture.
Wat Nokor Bachay
This pretty temple is something of an optical illusion as it hides a pagoda inside the outer temple walls that date from the times of Jayavarman VII. The inner pagoda is much more modern and would have been added later, but the outside walls and towers reminded us of Bayon at Angkor. This is probably no accident as this was also built by Jayavarman VII as well as Preah Khan, Banteay Chhmar, and Ta Prohm, also all located at Angkor. Make sure to look out for the exquisite carvings of Buddhist epics that are etched into the main tower.
The ticket price is USD2 and for this you also get to visit Phnom Pros and Phnom Srei, two dainty temples that sit on opposing hills facing each other.
Wat Nokor is located on the road from Kampong Cham in the direction of Phnom Penh on the N7 road.
The French Watchtower:
A relic of the French colonial period, the French Watchtower is one of the highlights in Kampong Cham. The tower was built to watch out over the river for any kinds of intruders and dates from the 1900s. We climbed to the top of the tower which includes walking up a small and cramped staircase, but the views from the top at sunset were absolutely breathtaking. You can also look over to the Governor’s House and take in the snaking river beneath you.
The French Watchtower is located just off the N7 road looking back over Kampong Cham.
Cheung Kok Ecotourism Village:
For a slice of Cambodian village life, head for the Cheung Kok Ecotourism Village. The village has partnered up with a French NGO named Amica and the aim is on sustainable practices that benefit the local community. You can either visit the village on your own or as part of a tour, and if you really want to get the most out of the experience then the guided tour can be the better choice. It takes about an hour and you will be shown different traditional arts such as silk making, palm weaving, sugar producing, and rice harvesting. You can also enjoy lunch with a local family for USD4 or stay in one of the rustic village huts for USD5.
If you are not ready to go that far, check other accommodation options available in Kampong Cham.
Cheung Kok Ecotourism Village is located on the N7 road towards Phnom Penh and is open Mon–Fri from 1.30pm–5.30pm or Sat–Sun 9am–11.30am and 2pm–5pm.
The Bamboo Bridge:
The Bamboo Bridge in Kampong Cham has the claim to fame of being the longest bamboo bridge in the world. We took around 15 minutes to walk the length of the bridge although it can be a slightly hair raising experience thanks to the noise it makes when cars and bikes cross over it.
The bridge is washed away every year when the heavy rains come and a new one constructed, and the end point is the charming island of Koh Pen on the other side from Kampong Cham. Once on the island you will find a clean beach and some charming little beach huts.
The Bamboo Bridge is located just off Sihanouk Road in Kampong Cham.