Welcome to the Cardamom Mountains, part of Southeast Asia’s largest rainforest. This largely unexplored tangle of jungle, wetlands and mangroves rolls over hump-backed mountains that steam with early-morning mist. Once teeming with Khmer Rouge guerrillas, its dense forests are now home only to rare wildlife and tiny villages where ethnic minority groups like the Por people live. The jungles here are well patrolled by Wildlife Alliance rangers who are engaged in an endless battle against illegal poachers and loggers.
Stay at a remote, tented eco-camp by the river to spot monkeys and otters on a kayaking trip, then join the Wildlife Alliance rangers on a conservation trek to plant indigenous trees and camera traps. Hikes will take you through forests of rosewood trees and exotic fauna, where endangered species like Asian elephants, clouded leopards and pangolins tread. Rivers snake like muddy ribbons through the landscape, where near-extinct Irrawaddy dolphins play in the currents and the prehistoric heads of Siamese crocodiles occasionally break the water’s surface.
Want to explore the mystical Cardamom Mountains? Talk to our Cambodia experts who can arrange eco-lodge stays and ethical, ranger-led treks.