Day 6 (Mondulkiri)
Nested in a hilly province, Sen Monorom boasts beautiful scenery and cool weather. The charming capital of Mondulkiri is very laid back and makes for a pleasant place to laze for a few days. And laze around I did. I took it easy and gave the usual attractions of waterfall and elephant trekking a miss. Energetic travelers can consider visiting Monorom Falls and Bou Sraa Waterfall, both of which were highly recommended by the locals.
I woke up at 7am and visited the morning market. The buzzing locals and sweet aroma of food filled my senses. In no time, my stomach started groaning. Expertly avoiding the zipping motorcycles whose views were blocked by overflowing baskets, I let my nose be my guide (hope it doesn’t remind you of the movie Perfume). I was richly rewarded with barbecued banana and glutinous rice wrapped in slightly charred banana leaves. This simple delicacy cost me 200R. Excellent value for money!
Day 5 (Ratanakiri – Mondulkiri)
I had a restless sleep, waking up a couple of times in the middle of the night. The staffs at Rattanak Hotel had told me that it’s easy riding to Mondulkiri and they had done it many times. They offered to be my guide. I declined, not so much because of my desire to ride alone, but because I didn’t want to spend the extra money. Yes, I am that tight. 🙂
By 6am, I was packed and ready to move off. I had difficulty finding the pier at Lumphat. Luckily, helpful locals directed me to the right track. The pier is not located along the main housing stretch but is located further down Tonle Srepok river, towards the south eastern direction. To get there, keep left when you reach the junction at N13 30.269 E106 58.621 (right brings you to the main town). Continue following the road until you see a small grocery and fuel shop at N13 28.670 E107 00.493. The ferry is located just further down the descending road. I paid 5000R to the boatman. The GPS coordinates across the river is N13 27.927 E107 00.399.
Tonle Srepok river of Apocalypse Now fame. The Death Highway awaits across the river.