But Southeast Asia has so many incredible places to climb and boulder at beyond these 2 hot spots, and today I am going to share with you a bit more about this little city located in the southern region of Cambodia near the Preaek Tuek Chuu River – called Kampot.
Many people flock to Cambodia to check out Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, the UNESCO World Heritage site. But did you know that there is so much more to experience in Cambodia beyond that. Phnom Pehn, Kep and Kampot are some of the other cities that has so much to offer, from historical sites, delicious cuisine, culture and more. Today, I am going to zoom in a lot more into specifically Kampot and some of the best activities to do there.
Outdoor Rock Climbing in Cambodia
There are only 2 known outdoor rock climbing place in Cambodia, one located nearby Phnom Penh, and the other is in none other than Kampot.
Kampot’s climbing area is managed by the folks from Climbodia, who help to maintain the area, set up routes and also offer day climbing tour and climbing classes to the locals and travelers coming to this region.
So before you get too excited about checking out the incredible routes and cave located there, here are some things to note:
Register at Climbodia Office in Kampot
Upon arrival in Kampot, do swing by Climbodia office to register and collect some information before heading to the routes. Located very near the durian roundabout in the central area of Kampot city, it’s quite easy to find, or you can always google Climbodia Office on Google Maps.
The Climbodia staff there were very friendly and will help you with guides, info and tips about the city as well. Do note in order to climb in the Climbodia Outdoor area, which is maintained by them, there will be a little fee of US$10 for every new person who visits to climb. This goes to the maintenance of the area and the costs to change the bolts and anchors. If you would like to donate more to further their cause, you can do so as well.
Best season to climb in Kampot
The rainy season in Cambodia is between the months of Jul-Sep. There are even occasional floodings too. So try to avoid these monsoon seasons and visit in their drier months.
Best timings to climb at the different spots
There is 2 main areas you can climb at – around the cave or in the cave. The bulk of the routes are around, where you can warm up on some nice 5As and 6As routes called Window Licker, DenE40 and Primadonna before attempting the scary but popular ones called Sunset Boulevard, or the nickname ‘The Chimney’.
For these segments, you should try to visit as early as possible at around 8 am onwards to avoid the heat and direct sun. By noontime, most of the wall would have the sun shining on it, and that’s when its best to head inside to the cave.
Looking for recommendations of the Best Climbing Gear and Brands to go for?
Check out my personal picks.
Kampot Cave Rock Climbing
Welcome to the caves of Kampot!
It’s really breezy and cool in the cave, and we did some really nice chill routes in the grades of 5C (Upgrade) and 6a+(April). This place reminded us a lot of Crazy Horse over in Chiang Mai, which unfortunately has closed down now.
Here in this cave, you can also bring a nice mat and just lie down and chill in between your climbs. The cave is truly beautiful and spectacular with the light shining in from the top, and you can also hear the bats/ birds chirping away around the cave.
Just take note to always keep the place clean and not leave any residue/ trash behind.
How long should you stay
My recommendation: Spend a good 4 Days in Kampot…
Kampot is not as bustling and crowded an area like Phnom Penh, but there are definitely plenty of things to do, and ways to wind down, relax and enjoy some really good meals. Here are some great suggestions to keep you and your friends busy:
Interesting List of Things to Do in Kampot
1. Check out the Kampot Pepper Farms, Plantations and Fields
Did you know that Kampot is best known for 2 agriculture produce – pepper and coffee. Yes you heard it right, pepper! From black and white pepper ( the more common ones) to red pepper, a premium level pepper that is commonly used among gourmet chefs. So if you need a souvenir unique to Cambodia, Kampot pepper is the best gift to buy for your friends of family members who cook.
2. Kayak along the river through the green cathedral
If you like a little river ride and enjoy some flora and fauna as well, then kayaking here is a must-do. Start off from Champa Lodge which is approximately 20 mins on bike/ tuk tuk from the centre of the city.
I heard friends talking a lot about how beautiful and enjoyable this river ride is going through these palm lis, though you do need to work hard and kayak!:) Note you will be interacting with the local villages/ communities there, so be aware of how you dress that is respectable and not over revealing.
3. Take a motorbike ride up to Bokor National Park
If you can ride a motorbike, this is one attraction and day trip that we strongly recommend you to try. There are heaps of scenic points along the ride up this 140,000 hectare national park to enjoy the view and snap away on your camera. There are some interesting stop points on the mountain that is worth exploring like waterfalls, the Black Palace of King Norodom Sihanouk and an abandoned old resort/ casino.
4. 6 Other interesting things to do in Kampot
- Salt Fields
- Khmer Cooking Class
- Supping by the river
- Handicraft shop visits made by locals
- Yoga class and retreat
How to get from Phnom Penh to Kampot – Transport
We took Giant Ibis bus from Phnom Penh to Kampot, which took us approximately 5 hours to get there when we took the morning 8am bus. There is also an afternoon bus available.
However, the road conditions can be quite unpredictable hence it is better to catch the morning bus versus the afternoon bus which might get stuck with the commuters/ workers getting home.
Hence concluding the incredible things you can do here in Kampot Cambodia. So if you are backpacking or visiting Southeast Asia coming from Thailand, Myanmar or others, consider swinging by Kampot in Cambodia.
You will not be disappointed with Kampot!