Oddor Meanchey is a small province in Cambodia situated in the northwest of the country and bordered by Thailand. The provincial capital is called Samraong and makes a worthwhile place to visit on the Indochina tour packages.
Most of the local countryside is covered by the Dangrek Mountains, which made a great shelter for the last of the Khmer Rouge who made their last stand here. This very remote province has plenty of leftover Khmer Rouge sites that attract a lot of travellers interested in the modern history of Cambodia's brutal past. Plus, there are two border crossings with Thailand - O Smach-Chong Chom and Choam-Chong Sa Ngam - that are more frequently use with the improvement in the road surface in recent years.
The warm and humid tropical climate in Cambodia makes it a perfect environment to travel year round. Travellers can enjoy the very pleasant weather throughout the course of the year with average temperatures in the region of 27°C; though this can fall to about 16°C in the cooler months. The cool season (November to March) is the best time to travel to this country, while April can be the hottest month, which is best avoided by those travellers that prefer to avoid the intense heat. The rainy season runs from May to October and for those enjoying the Cambodian travel package during this time it is worth packing the extra supplies such as a lightweight and waterproof jacket.
The province of Oddor Meanchey is in the region of 6158 km² in size. It is in a remote area of north-west Cambodia and bordered by Siem Reap to the south, to the west with Banteay Meanchey, to the east with Preah Vihear, and to the north with Thailand. The province includes the Dangkrek Mountains in the north, in the southeast is a very attractive wildlife sanctuary called Kulen Promtep, while most other areas are used for agriculture.
How to get there
For those planning to travel to Oddor Meanchey this is easily achieved via Anlong Veng from Siem Reap with a travel distance of approx. 140 km. The preferred form of transport is a shared taxi which can take in the region of 4 to 6 hours to complete (travel time depends on the season) and can cost in the region of $4-$5.
Where to stay
The capital city of Samraong has never been established as a major tourist destination, so only has the basic guesthouse accommodation that is clustered near the market and within a short distance of the taxi station.
A stay at the Rikreay Guest House on the Cambodia tour package offers a simple, yet clean place to stay with a shared bathroom, a bed, fan and mosquito net. Electricity may only be available for certain hours as this may shut down at night. The cost for this guest house is in the region of $2.50.
A visit to the nearby Meanchey Guest House is relatively similar to Rikreay, but there is more chance of the electricity staying on 24 hours a day. The cost is between $4 and $10 per night. This ranges from rooms with a shared bathroom or the double room with an attached, yet simple bathroom.
The Chouen Prakkap is a pretty decent hotel for travellers planning to explore rural northern Cambodia. It has spacious and clean rooms – 35 in total – with a choice of single or twin rooms. Plus, there are plenty of amenities such as air-con, satellite TV and mini-bar.
Eat and drink
With Samraong not being a big scene for the tourist there are only several food stalls in the central market that offer a varied range of dishes (Chinese noodle and typical Khmer dishes) in precooked saucepans that cost in the region of 2000 to 3000 Riel. But, make sure the serving is piping hot before agreeing to purchase.
For the traveller interested in the more sophisticated food, it may be worth visiting the Santepheap restaurant that has a great menu of authentic dishes, but you shouldn't expect any Western cuisine.
Similar to most small towns in Cambodia there is at least one market area that is worth a visit. A visit to the busy Samraong centre makes it possible to explore the market and local shops that trade in a variety of packet products, meats, vegetables, fruits and fish. Most of the shops that trade in food and drink are within a very short distance of the market.
Things to see and do
A visit to the O'Smach resort includes luxury hotels, good-quality restaurants and several casinos. It is easily located near the Cambodian/Thailand border and is approx. 41 km from the provincial town of Oddar Meanchey.
Champei waterfall (also referred to as Laang Ta Thong waterfall) is about 35 km from the provincial town of Odda Meanchey. This beautiful site includes a mountain valley that is rich in plant life including orchids, as well as a large boulder that measures close to 500 m².
Close to the waterfall is a cultural and natural site that is organized by the local monks to give a place of meditation. This area is referred to as Ruot Champei and includes plenty of wildlife and religious statues that relate to the life process from birth to death.
The Cultural Site of Khmer Rouge (Tamok House)
A visit to the cultural site of the Khmer Rouge on the Cambodia Package Holiday makes it possible to see statues that depict the troop arrangement and lifestyle of the Khmer Rouge during the period of struggle (1979 to 1997) with the government. This site is located in the An Lung Veng Districial which is about 100 km from Oddor Meanchey.
Plus the local tourism office is developing and organizing other attractions in the Oddar Meanchey province, including the site of a Khmer Rouge prison, a killing field during the Khmer Rouge regime, Toul Kruoy, Tumnub Thmei, Beung Snor, Kuy Plantation, Por Temple, Tropiang Baray, Sneung temple, O'Angkrong site and Tonle Sar site.