Looking for a unique and adventurous travel experience? Look no further than Bokor Hill Station. Perched atop Bokor Mountain in Kompot Province, Cambodia, this historical site offers breathtaking views, fascinating attractions, and a chance to step back in time. In this article, we will explore the must-visit attractions, essential travel guides, things to do, and how to get to this hidden gem.
Bokor Hill Station: A Step into History
Bokor Hill Station has a rich history that dates back to the early 1920s when it was established as a French colonial resort. It served as a retreat for the French elite and offered respite from the hot and humid climate of the lowlands. The hill station was later abandoned during Cambodia’s turbulent times but has since been revived as a popular tourist destination.
Must-Visit Attractions at Bokor Hill Station
- Bokor Palace Hotel and Casino: This grand hotel and casino were once a symbol of luxury and decadence. Today, it stands as a hauntingly beautiful ruin, offering visitors a glimpse into Cambodia’s past. Explore the eerie halls and corridors, and imagine the stories of glamour and intrigue that unfolded here.
- Wat Sampov Pram: This picturesque hilltop pagoda offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside at Wat Sampov Pram. Admire the intricate architecture, ornate statues, and serene atmosphere. Don’t forget your camera, as this is the perfect spot for capturing stunning photographs.
- Popokvil Waterfall: Take a refreshing break from exploring and cool off at Popokvil Waterfall. The crystal-clear waters cascading down the rocks create a tranquil oasis. Enjoy a picnic by the water’s edge or take a dip in the inviting pools.
- The Black Palace: Delve into the dark side of Bokor Hill Station with a visit to the Black Palace. This abandoned royal residence was once home to King Sihanouk. The decaying mansion is shrouded in mystery and offers a unique blend of eerie beauty and historical significance.
Travel Guides: Making the Most of Your Visit
To ensure a memorable and enjoyable trip to Bokor Hill Station, here are some essential travel guides that you should keep in mind:
- Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit Bokor Hill Station is during the dry season, from November to March. The weather is pleasant, and you are less likely to encounter heavy rain showers.
- Safety Precautions: As Bokor Hill Station is located at a higher altitude, it is important to dress in layers and bring warm clothing. The temperatures can be cooler compared to the lowlands. It is also advisable to wear comfortable shoes, as there is a fair amount of walking involved.
- Transportation: To get to Bokor Hill Station, you can hire a private car or join a guided tour. The journey from Kampot takes approximately two hours, and the scenic route offers spectacular views of the countryside.
Things to Do at Bokor Hill Station
Bokor Hill Station offers a variety of activities for adventurous travelers. Here are some suggestions on how to make the most of your visit:
- Explore the Abandoned Buildings: Take a stroll through the abandoned buildings and relish in the sense of solitude and history. From the church to the casino, each structure has its own unique story to tell.
- Hike the Trails: Bokor Hill Station is surrounded by lush forests and stunning landscapes. Lace up your hiking boots and embark on a scenic hike through the trails. Discover hidden waterfalls, spot exotic wildlife, and immerse yourself in nature’s beauty.
- Capture the Sunset: Witness a mesmerizing sunset from one of the many viewpoints at Bokor Hill Station. As the sun dips below the horizon, the sky comes alive with an array of vibrant colors, creating a picture-perfect moment.
How to Get to Bokor Hill Station
There are several ways to reach Bokor Hill Station:
- From Phnom Penh: If you’re starting your journey from Phnom Penh, you can take a bus or hire a private car to Kampot. From there, arrange transportation to Bokor Hill Station.
- From Sihanoukville: If you’re visiting Sihanoukville, you can also take a bus or hire a private car to Kampot and continue your journey to Bokor Hill Station.
Bokor Hill Station offers a unique travel experience for those seeking adventure and historical charm. With its hauntingly beautiful ruins, stunning natural landscapes, and captivating history, it is a destination that should not be missed. So pack your bags, plan your trip, and get ready to explore this hidden gem in Cambodia.