BanteayMeanchey in Cambodia is a praiseworthy destination that you might not want to miss in this mysterious Indochina country. Meaning “Fortress of Victory” in the Khmer language, this province is a suitable choice for nature lovers and history enthusiasts. Provided that you’re setting foot in this laid-back country and want to find an off-the-beaten-track site to see, consider BanteayMeanchey! Explore the beauty of northwest Cambodia with: Indochina travel Cambodia
Located in the far northwest of Cambodia, BanteayMeanchey Province shares its border with OddarMeancheyto the north, Siem Reap to the east, Battambang Province to the south, and Thailand to the west. The capital and also the largest city of this destination is SereiSaophoan. It has the two major rivers: MongkolBorei River and Sisophon River. Sharing the international border with Thailand results in the cross-cultural communication and trading among the residents of the two countries. Geographically, this province belongs to the set of nine provinces which are components of Tonle Sap Biosphere Reserve. The area protects the diverse aquatic life that makes it a primitively green venue. Besides the quiet and charming beauty, BanteayMeanchey is famous for the friendly locals who happily welcome the foreign guests to step into their homeland.
What to See in BanteayMeanchey
As one of the most religious local masterpieces, BanteayChhmar Temple is famous for the exceptional bas-relief which depicts the Khmer’s War against Champa. The history of this temple could be dated back to the 12th-13th century, during the reign of King Jayavarman VII. Together with the impressive religious architecture, this temple owns the significant history to tell the visitors. Nonetheless, this site is not well-conserved as much as many other Angkorian temples. It’s worth pointing out that BanteayChhmar Temple is put on Cambodia’s tentative list for UNESCO World Heritage sites. The purpose is to increase the locals’ and the foreigners’ awareness.
Approximately 100km from Siem Reap, the green land of AngTrapeangThmor is an exceptional wetland ecosystem. This is a friendly home to more than 200 bird species, and the most special one is the endangered Sarus Crane. There are various attempts to protect this threatened bird species in this conservative area. Bird watching is ideal here, and the best to watch the Sarus Crane is reported to be from February to May. The wetland and forest in this place of interest teach you to cherish the ecosystem and stay friendly to nature. Don’t forget to bring a camera to capture the moments you see the rare Sarus Crane!
If you like to see the gray cranes in BanteayChhmar, then fulfill your interest right in TrapiangTma! But the distance from the provincial town to this attraction is quite far, up to 56km to the east. The natural site owns the scenic and green settings for various nature-friendly activities, from trekking through the jungle to bird watching. Remarkably, the endangered gray cranes are the keys in this wild site. The scientists find that these cranes migrate to Ratanakiri to lay their eggs every year. But when their offsprings are mature enough, the cranes will fly back to TrapiangTmar to find more food. Crane watching here is often ideal from March to May. The pristine and gorgeous scenery in this place of interest lets you stay harmony with nature. What could be more enjoyable than watching flocks of cranes flying over the blue sky or finding food? During the moment, you can believe that the scenery of the cranes in the folktales might be real. Just use your camera and take the great shots! Otherwise, your eyes are the best lens.
Phnom Bak and Phnom Chenh Chiang
Around 5km to the west of BanteayMeanchey, this natural and cultural attraction calls for the travelers’ interest in relaxing and resting. While this venue brings the pleasant feeling, the nearby mountains serve as the hard walls that protect the whole area. Every wild component makes up the authentic picture of nature. You surely find various flattering corners to photograph or draw. The vertical faces of the mountain inspire you to be an artist. Furthermore, remember to look for the interesting well and the stone statues in which lots of sculptures have been left there. As a symbol of luck, the tourists can buy stone sculpturesfrom many local vendors.
How to Get to BanteayMeanchey
You might need to know about the nearest airports to Sisophon. List of the international airports includes Siem Reap-Angkor International Airport, Phnom Penh International Airport, Suvarnabhumi Airport and Don Mueang International Airport (in Bangkok). And, the convenient local airport of Battambang Airport is a good choice for you to land on; after that, take a taxi transfer to BanteayMeanchey!
As BanteayMeanchey shares the international border with Thailand, it’s feasible to drive from Bangkok to this destination via Poipet border. Though there are not many choices to reach this province, the motorcycle and share taxi are the two most favorites means of transport. So, from your location (Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, or Battambang, for instance), decide if you can experience a motorcycle tour or tax a share taxi to this remote province! It is the scenic drive along the beautiful stretches to reach the site. For your reference, know that it takes 8 hours driving from Phnom Penh to Sisophon; 2 hours from Siem Reap; and 1 hour from Poipet.
Though the train journey might take longer than taxi or motorcycle, it might be a choice for some travelers. Notice that the train from Battambang is likely to reach Sisophon between 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM! But you have to understand that this is a long-hour trip, which can even double the time in comparison with the taxi journey.
When to Visit BanteayMeanchey
BanteayMeanchey has the tropical climate like some other provinces of Cambodia. With the predominantly warm and humid atmosphere, this green destination should be ideal for traveling throughout the year. Anyhow, it’s possible to divide the local weather into the three separate seasons.
- June – October: These months are grouped into the rainy season. With the average temperature of 24-27 Celsius degrees and the high humidity of up to 90%, the weather condition of this period might be unpleasant to some guests. The unexpected rain might ruin your outdoor play; therefore, do remember to bring the umbrella. For the smooth experience, make sure you check the weather forecast online beforehand!
- November – February: These months feature the average temperature of over 27 Celsius degrees, the cool and breezy wind. Notice that it gets very cold at night, and might be hard for somebody to sleep.But if you accept the cold, this period is not a bad time to see BanteayMeanchey at all. “The Fortress of Victory” remains unspoiled and picturesque.
- March – May: These are the hot and dry months not only in Cambodia but also in BanteayMeanchey. For the majority of travelers, this seems to be the best period to see the site, with no rain and no cold. The average temperature at the time is from 27 to 34 Celsius degrees. Though it is sweaty during the daytime, the outdoor exploration is fantastic, enjoyable, and convenient. Make sure you have sunscreen to protect the skin from the sunlight!