Chi Phat is a village southwest of Phnom Penh and close to the Cardamom mountains. It’s a good base camp for jungle treks, kayaking, mountainbiking and bird watching. In a few years time, it turned into a pretty good organized eco tourism community. Former pouchers are now jungle trek guides, farmer families in the village offer homestays and guesthouse accomodation, boatmen take visitors up and down the river from the main national route to the village, young men are now employed as motor taxi drivers who transport visitors and goods to the remote village. Chi Phat sees a steadily growing amount of visitors and as far as I was able to see, everyone benefits equally and seems happy with the flourishing economy in the village.
Our jungle trek was surely unforgettable: due to high temperatures and humidity I’ve never sweated that much in my life before. But the swim in a remote waterfall lake definitely made up for it. The jungle cooks who dragged cooking pots and groceries all the way into the jungle prepared us a good Kjmer dinner, and the evening we spent singing songs since there was no light apart from moonlight :). Sleeping in a hammock in the jungle was surprisingly comfortable!