Mondulkiri is an eastern province of Cambodia, bordered by Ratanakiri to the north, Vietnam to the Refer to page 14 for its geographic location east and southeast, Kratie to the southwest and west, within Cambodia and shares a very small border with Stung Treng to the north. It is the largest province of Cambodia, but It is the most remote and sparely populated province with the total inhabitants of some 40,000, and 80 percent of them are made of ten different tribal minorities, with the majority of Phnorng. Variety of languages are being used: Khmer, hill tribe languages, Vietnamese and Lao. The remaining 20 percent are Khmer, Chinese and Muslim Cham. Most of the population lives off the land, planting rice, fruit trees and a variety of vegetables. Others grow, coffee, strawberries, rubber and cashew nuts. The province’s appeal lies on the perfect weather and the stunning view of long grassy hills, dense forests, wildlife and majestic waterfalls, which all help earn Mondulkiri the candidateship of Cambodia’s eco tourism. Despite the growing deforestation, especially due to the valuable minerals remaining in the deep red, fertile ground, Mondulkiri has still one of the biggest successional woodlands of Cambodia. Except being in Sen Monorom, you’ll find deep pure jungle, with a huge variety of flora and fauna. You may also find gigantic and beautiful waterfalls, where you can take an empowering shower, such as the impressive Bou Sraa.
Sen Monorom is the provincial capital and doesn’t show up as a typical Cambodian town, while it is the only town the province has to speak of. With approx. 7500 inhabitants, 20 guesthouses, 12 restaurants, 3 bars and no post office it is often compared to American Wild West frontier towns. Concerning the quietness and beauty of Sen Monorom people from other parts of the country move here and therefore the land price doubled from 2006 to 2007.
The town of Sen Monorom is the best base camp for travellers who want to explore the surrounding areas. A quiet but beautiful town nestled into the hills; it has a lot of potential to develop into a centre for non-intrusive eco-tourism. At present, it’s very undeveloped, which gives you a feeling of going somewhere off the beaten tourist trail. Add to that the communities of hill tribe people, who are not affected by mass-tourism. You have an area that is very attractive to the adventure traveller.
Although more and more houses are built in 'Khmer style', you still can find the traditional Phnong houses. In the houses you'll find big jars, which are said to be more than a thousand years old, and traditional gongs. There are various sorts of gongs used at different occasions. Jars and gongs are among the most valuable possessions of indigenous communities both in traditional and spiritual as well as material terms. During the times of Pol Pot those objects were buried in hidden places in the jungle and in many cases they still wait in the ground.
The vast majority of the indigenous peoples living in Mondulkiri are subsistence farmers, who are planting some rice and other vegetables, more or less to feet themselves. There is also a quite common production of the famous rice wine here, which is one of the best in the country. Additionally the indigenous people are selling handmade products such as bracelets, necklaces, scarfs, Kramas etc. to the few visiting tourists.
Mondulkiri province is situated on the South - East plateau (approx. altitude around 200-1000 metres), it’s capital Sen Monorom is about 375 Km from Phnom Penh. It is bordering Vietnam to the East and South, Ratanakiri to the North, and Kratie province to the West. Beside a bunch of smaller rivers, which grow quite big during the rainy season, there are two bigger rivers crossing the province ( the Preaek Chhbaar and the Preaek Te River ). The total area of Mondulkiri is about 14,288 square kilometres.
Busra waterfall is located in Pich Chenda district about 43 kilometers northeast of Mondulkiri provincial town, Sen Monorom. Busra is considered by many to be the most beautiful waterfall in Mondulkiri. The waterfall is divided into three stages:
.. First Stage: The waterfall fall is 8 to 12 meters high and 15 meters wide in rainy season and 10 to 15 meters wide in dry season.
.. Second Stage: The waterfall fall is 15 to 20 meters high and 20 meters wide in rainy season and 18 to 25 meters high and 13 meters wide in dry season. The second stage is 150 meters from the first stage.
.. Third Stage: The speed of waterfall is faster than the second stage. This stage cannot be reached because it is in the thick forest. There are no marked paths and dangerous wildlife inhabits the area.
The double-drop waterfall is very popular with the locals who use it as a bathing and picnic spot. Its top level is around 10m in height, and the lower level drops down 25m to the gorge. It is in a scenic and pristine setting and offers great photo ops. Nearby is the ethnic Phnorng village called Pichchenda which has a small guesthouse.
Chrey Thom Waterfall is located at Sen Monorum District in 43kilometer distance from the provincial town. During the dry season, the waterfall has 15 meters height and 2 meters diameter, and during the rainy season, the waterfall has 11 meters height and 8 meters diameter. The waterfall fall us near a plantation of Srolao trees and a big, branchy Chrey tree.
The provincial tourist service is working with the local authority to prepare this site as a tourist destination in place of Busra waterfall, which is inaccessible during rainy season.The Chrey Thom Waterfall is situated in Poules and Pouchhob Villages, Dakdam Commune, Oreang District; 20 km away from the provincial town. It can be accessed by the red pebble path. There are more than 208 families living in the Chrey Thom area of 303.555 ha, whose main occupations are farming. The resort provides plenty of opportunities for picnicking, hiking, swimming, especially for visiting an ethnic village and purchasing some souvenirs beautifully produced by ethnic groups. Its main points of interest are a spectacular waterfall, dramatic mountainous forest, impressive undulating hills, and fresh air. Chrey Thom Waterfall is one of the loveliest Tourist Attractions in Mondulkiri. Tourists love spending a day at the site of this beautiful waterfall only for its natural beauty. Chrey Thom Waterfall, Mondulkiri is a natural waterfall and is surrounded by lush green woods.
O Taing Laing Waterfall O Taing Laing Waterfall is 60 km (4h) From Provincial Town.Description: Natures & Wildlife Preserves. Location: Memorng Commune, Keo Seyma District.
On the highlands in Sen Monorom district, about 6 kilometers from the provincial town, is a large pine tree plantation where hundreds of towering pine tree, planted before 1970, are growing in rows. Fallen needles from the trees turn the ground into a golden carpet. The needles are so numerous that visitors can lie on the ground without disturbing them.
Pine trees are believed to have been planted before then Prince Norodom Sihanouk founded his Sangkum Reastr Niyum regime, at which time the province was created. In addition, according to hunters in the province, there are more than 60 waterfalls, both big and small, making Mondulkiri province a potential source for hydro electric power.
Sen Monorum Waterfall is located at Sen Monorum District in five-kilometer distance from the provincial town by red soil trail, Along either sides of the trail, there are industrial plantations like rubber, coffee and cashew as well. The local people usually meet each other at Sen Monorum waterfall during the holidays and national festivals because it closed to the provincial town. Sen Monorum waterfall has three stages: -First stage: The waterfall has slow speed, one-meter height and 2-4 meter diameter. - Second stage: During the rainy season, the waterfall has strong speed, 6-7 meter height and 8-meter diameter. During the dry season, the waterfall has 7-9 meter height and 4-5 meter diameter. At the waterfall, there is a large space of resting and enjoying. - Third stage: Locates at one-kilometer distance from the second stage. The waterfall has 1.5-meter height only.Getting to Sen Monorom is difficult, adding to its off-thebeaten-path allure. From Phnom Penh, it takes about 10 hours.