to the provinces of Cambodia
updated January 2006
Kandal is the suburban extension of Phnom Penh municipality as it completely
envelops the capital city. It's not a province you make a destination
out of, but within the boundaries are a number of excursions to make from
the big city.
Aside from surrounding Phnom Penh, Kandal is bordered clockwise from
the north by Kompong Cham, Prey Veng, Vietnam, Takeo, Kompong Speu, and
Choeung Ek (the killing fields)
The clay temple
Fifteen kilometers southwest of Phnom Penh this is the most famous of
the dozens of killing fields memorials that are scattered around the country.
One large stupa housing thousands of skulls fronts a series of depressions
in the earth - the opened mass graves - each sign-posted as to what was
removed twenty-odd years ago. Every motodriver knows where it is or you
can easily find it on your own, head out Monireth Blvd, go over the small
bridge passing through Stung Meanchey district (the noisy dirty industrial
neighborhood) and turn left at the fork. Choeung Ek is a few more kilometers
down on the left. Usually seen in combination with a trip to the Tuol
Sleng Museum. The attraction was recently privatized to a Japanese company.
Also known as Koki Beach, this a popular Khmer picnic area on the weekends.
The gig is you rent by the hour some space in a bamboo hut over the Mekong,
purchase some local eats (some rather unusual), and sit around eating.
With hundreds of other people it's hardly a peaceful setting and you'll
realize this as soon as you arrive when touts for the various picnic areas
run after your motorbike, surround it and almost physically drag you to
their respective offerings. Bargain hard and agree to your price before
renting. Or just skip the whole experience. This is not a talesofasia
recommended attraction. Jet ski rental is available. This place can be
quite deserted during the week.
The clay temple
About halfway to Kien Svay in the village of Koh Slaket is a temple built
entirely of clay and completed in 2000. It was nameless at the time but
should be Wat One-thing-or-another by now. It's really weird, trust me.
You can read more about it
Also known as Mekong Island and partially within Phnom Penh municipality,
this is a fairly touristy place, but nonetheless is a tranquil rural attraction.
Agriculture and silk weaving are the offerings and you can see it all
up close and personal. Good place to wander around on a moto. It's north
of the city, over the Japanese Bridge.
Two shooting ranges and a go-cart track are located beyond the Phnom Penh
International Airport. Easily found by any motodriver.
The Rough Guide Cambodia mentions several other temples and pagodas within
the province which I'm not familiar with. See the Phnom Penh section of
that book for more information.
All text and photographs ©
1998 - 2006 Gordon Sharpless. Commercial or editorial usage without written
permission of the copyright holder is prohibited.