Published: January 29th 2011January 29th 2011
From Battembang, we had a long bus journey to Kompong Cham, which is in the east of Cambodia. We only had one day stopover as we wanted to see the Bamboo Bridge and also go on a bike ride around a rural village. At the beginning of the dry season, a bridge made entirely out of bamboo is constructed to allow villagers from the island access to the mainland. At the end of the dry season, it is destroyed as boats can be used to cross the Mekong River. This happens every year! We hired out some bikes and went across the bridge which made quite a noise but was extremely sturdy. We loved cycling around the small village (and having to say Hello to passersby about a billion times!) We saw traditional Horse & Cart being used to transfer hay and herds of cows and other animal being navigated through the small roads. We spent a while just watching the people in fields working on their crops and it was very tranquil. Here, there was some of the most idyllic scenes of the countryside that we have ever seen. When we passed a school, we were swamped by young boys
joking with us and two even climbed on the back of Adam's bike for a short lift.
With our visa running out of time and knowing we had to get to Vietnam soon, we moved on to Kratie. We tried the famous dish of sticky rice and red beans cooked in bamboo tubes which you have to peel as we watched the sunset on the Mekong river. Just outside of Kratie, you are able to charter a boat to go on the river to spot the rare and endangered Irrawaddy Dolphins. We got a Tuk-tuk and then transferred onto a small long boat. Our driver took us to a great spot and we saw lots of the them poking their heads and backs out of the water to get air. They have strange bulbous heads unlike normal dolphins but they were very graceful gliding through the water. Afterwards, we got taken to the rapids, where there are sandy 'islands' dotted in the middle of the river and the water rushes around them. We went in the river and chatted to our driver about his life in Kratie.
We were really impressed with Cambodia. We found the people to
be the friendliest that we have met so far. It is a beautiful country that is very unspoilt from westernization as most people still live very traditional lives.
There are more photos below