Week Sixteen: 11/13 – 11/20

On Sunday, we took a 3 hours bus to visit a small village called Chambok outside of a Kirirom national park.

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The bus to Chombak.

The village was 20 km off the main road, so we had to hop on two motos to get there. It was a fun ride :)

We arrived in the late afternoon and walked around the edge of the park until dinner.

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This little guy scared me during my first visit to the latrine. It was dark and he started buzzing really loudly.

On Monday, we decided to go for a longer hike up to a waterfall. They offered guiding services that were pretty expensive $15-20 a day. The trail seemed very well marked during our walk the day before so we decided to head off ourselves.

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A view from the main building on the edge of the park.
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Our first river crossing

Things started to get more intense after the first river crossing. At times the trail was overgrown by grass, but generally, we were able to follow it rather easily.

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Getting closer to the top
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What an explorer!

We got to a place that we thought would be the end of the trail, but there was supposed to be a big waterfall there. They hadn’t given us a map, which was unfortunate, so we waded up and down the river to see if we could find the waterfall.

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Walking down the river.

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We didn’t have much success finding the waterfall, so decided to head back.

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Looks like a scorpion!
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Centipedes are gross…
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Crossing back through the river.

The sun was still pretty high in the sky, so we decided to head up the shorter, better marked trail to see the big waterfall. We figured we would have better luck with this one.

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There are spirits in the woods.
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That’s not a spirit.
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An ox-cart carrying bamboo. Not sure how they can cut down bamboo in a national park, but it is Cambodia.
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Our first glimpse of the big falls.
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Up close and personal.

The waterfall was by far the most powerful falls I’ve ever been to. It was really fun to feel the water droplets splash against your face.

We saw a beetle on the way back.

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Almost home.

In the evening, some children from the village performed a traditional dance for us.

 

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The performers

 

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A selfie with our guide and two other American visitors.

The next morning we were greeted by a puppy!

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Visiting a microgrid: what better way to start the day!

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We rode around the village for a little bit.

 

 

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Many houses also had stand-alone solar systems.

 

In the afternoon, we biked to a swimming pond. I snapped a few videos along the way there and back.

 

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The sunset

 

On Thursday, we headed back to Phnom Penh. The rest of Thursday and Friday were pretty low-key.

On Sunday, a few friends invited me to go with them to Cambodian kickboxing match. In Cambodia, the sport is called Kuh Khmer and is the most popular sport in the country.

The opening match wasn’t particularly eventful, though they did play the macarena during the time between rounds, which I found funny.

They had entertainment between the rounds.

This is a part of the second match.

The entrance of the final and best match.

It was definitely at times hard to watch. I don’t wholeheartedly agree with the violence of it, but still enjoyed watching the matches. In the videos of the third match, it was fun to hear how vocal the crowd got.

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