Phnom Penh is certainly not a green city. However, it is possible to see monkeys, squirrels and hornbills roaming the tall trees surrounding Wat Phnom. Just opposite, the gardens of the Council for the Development of Cambodia are home to the only tree in the city where hundreds of bats are nesting. They fly away at dusk to feed on fruit.
From the thrumming activity of Cambodia’s cosmopolitan capital, you’re always within close reach of secluded stretches of nature and wildlife.
It’s an easy journey from Phnom Penh to the Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre, and when you book a tour your guide will even stop at a local market to pick up some fruit for the animals you’re about to encounter. With more than 1,200 rescued animals residing here, you’ll have the chance to meet elephants, tigers, macaque monkeys, gibbons and many more native tropical creatures.
Nature thrives on Koh Dach Island, a short tuk-tuk drive and ferry ride away from Phnom Penh. In this Mekong River village, locals weave textiles from natural silks and specialise in other handicrafts including pottery and woodcarving. Explore tranquil rural life by bicycle and gaze upon rolling rice paddies and fruit orchards that abound on these fertile lands.
Just venture a few kilometres from vibrant Phnom Penh to create a deeper connection with nature.