In 1921, Phnom Penh was an unsanitary city where the humidity and the heat mixed together
made life difficult for the french colonists, used to enjoy the pleasure of Paris.
As a result, the frenchs settlers, so exhausted by Phnom Penh, decided to set up a resort in the south of Cambodia.
This resort had shops, a post office (now reduced to dust), a church and a majestuous builing called "The Grand Bokor Palace Hotel and Casino".
Bokor Hill has been abandoned two times: first, in 1941 during the first indochina war where the anti-french
movement 'Khmer Issarak' led local insurrections and then in 1972 when Khmer Rouges took control of the town.
Later, in 1979, Bokor Hill Station was the strongholds of Khmer Rouge during the Vietnamese invasion.
They held the place and fight for months.
Now, Bokor Hill Station is like a ghost town with its unique atmosphere between the remains of the French era
and the clouds, flying so low that we could almost touch them.
After a 1h30 trip from Kampot to Bokor Hill (if you decide wisely to rent a motorbike) you will immediately see the Casino
and the old church.
The road ends a kilometer after you enter Bokor Hill, which means that you will have to make a U turn to go back to Kampot.
Make your first stop here in this old church. This is a very small place with wall covered with writings in different language.
You will be "welcomed" by an Altar placed at the center of the main room. Even If you really want to take a look at every details the chances
are you will not spend more than 15 minutes exploring this ruin.
Your next stop should be the Casino. Take your time to visit all the rooms, stories and enjoy the incredible view.
The structure is really robust so - theoritically - you should not face any stone fall.
After visiting the gran Casino, cross the road and take a look at the water tower.
Finally, before heading back to Kampot you can visit the surroundings after the end of the main road.
You should be able to find a way through the vegetation and open some doors in the old villas.
On your way back to Kampot, a traffic roundabout will lead you to Kampot or to the waterfalls. In less than 5 minutes
with a motor bike you can reach this beautiful place where you can easily enjoy a quick lunch (that you've brought with you) before
going back to Kampot.
The first and easiest option would be to rent a motor bike. Do not hesitate to refer to the section of this website for more
information on the process and the prices. Prior to leave Kampot to drive to Bokor make sure to have a full tank, you can manage
to find gas at the top of bokorhill (when shops are open) but the price is incredibly high!
Plan at least a full day is you want to reach bokor hill by walk, a map, a torchlight and a lot of motivation should lead you to the top.
Trips by bus could be organized by travel agencies, lots of hotel could set it up for you.
A bottle of water is also a must-have as the trip can be long and a small pic-nic bought in Kampot down town could be perfect especially if you plan to
enjoy it while watching the waterfalls.
Even in a warm summer, bring additionnal warm-clothes as it is really cold when
you reach the top of the moutain.