Stung Treng

Travel Guide Asia Cambodia Stung Treng

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Introduction

Stung Treng is a sleepy small town on the Mekong River in the Ratanakiri Province. This untainted province is located at the tri-country area of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam and quite far away from tourist areas.

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Sights and Activities

Just north of the city you'll find the Stung Treng Women's Development Centre where the women from Stung Treng come to weave silk. When you purchase one of their products, you help them to build a better future for themselves. As a sign of their gratitude they'll give you a small gift made out of silk.

If you head out of Stung Treng and off of the beaten track, you can visit the hill tribes in the Banlung area. These are traditional mountain tribes in the middle of the jungle who live near refreshing waterfalls.

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Getting There

By Road

Hwy 7 to Kratie is fully paved, but heading north to the border with Laos it's in very bad condition (as of June 2019), alternating between stretches of pavement, stretches of gravel, and stretches of bumpy former pavement.

It's no problem to do the trip by bus/minibus in either direction. Every guesthouse will sell you a ticket. It can be quiet difficult to get public transport directly at the border, so it's worth considering buying a ticket to your final destination. The minibus to the border takes about 1½hr, while it's a 4-5 hr drive to Kratie (much more in the rainy season). Minibus drivers have been known to abandon their passengers at the border crossing at Dom Kralor.

The daily bus from Phnom Penh to Laos passes the town in the afternoon and is the safest option to get to Laos.

Travelling by truck from Kratie is also an option, and will cost 20-25,000 riel for riding in the back of the truck, and 25-30,000 riel to ride in the cabin. It is somewhat less safe than other modes of transport, and can take much longer, but puts you in much greater direct contact with the locals.

A new bridge was completed in August 2014 to the west side of the river. The road to Preah Vihear / Anlong Veng is unsealed for the road 64 part. After that it's very nicely sealed all the way. Be warned there are long stretches without gasoline so top up frequently.

By Boat

Fast boats used to be the best way to get here, but Chinese money has made the roads a joy compared to their old state. Regular boat services north and south no longer run, though small speedboats can be chartered for trips to non-standard destinations.

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Getting Around

Since the town is so small, there's no point in using anything other than your own two feet to get you anywhere within the town itself. If you decide to see any of the area's limited sights, simply hire one of the few motodops around for no more than a couple of thousand riel.

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Eat

Riverside Restaurant (Opposite the taxi parking lot). Offers good, early morning noodle soup. Dishes are USD1-3. The manager, Mr T, can help organise any transport or tour you might need. They also have rooms from USD6 with large comfortable beds and private bathrooms but no outside window.
Sophak Mukul Restaurant (Just east of the market). Very popular. The portions are unusually large for a restaurant serving Khmer food, and cost around 3,000 riel.

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Sleep

Most cheap guesthouses can be found at the river front or the street just behind it. Expect to pay US$3 for a small room, however for a few dollars more the hotels below offer much better value for money.

Sekong Restaurant, ☏ +855 74 973762. The most conveniently located place in town, being a short walk from the boat dock. Rooms are a bit dilapidated, but inexpensive on the lower end. USD5-7 (shared bath/private bath).
Sok Sambath Hotel, ☏ +855 74 973790. Well-tended rooms with fans and other comforts that the cheaper places don't have. USD7-15.
Stung Treng Hotel. Good rooms including private bath and TV. USD6+.
Tonle Guesthouse (Tourism Training Center), ☏ +855 92 674990, ✉ fieldco@tourismforhelp.org. A traditional Khmer house with four nicely decorated rooms equipped with fans and a terrace with a view of the Sekong River. Serves Western and local foods. USD6.

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet bars are starting to appear in most major towns in Cambodia. Connection speeds vary as does the quality of the computers. The best places to go online definately are Phnom Penh and Siem Reap and outside of these centers it's generally also more expensive. In general prices are not much more than US1-2 an hour. Remember to take off your shoes when you enter as a sign of respect and to watch out for small shrines that are on the ground.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

The country code of Cambodia is 855. To call out of Cambodia, dial 001 followed by the country code and telephone number of the other party. Many of the internet bars also have international calling options and you can also arrange calls at post offices. Services are usually run by the governmental telecommunication network Camintel. You can find telephone cards in many shops, starting from serveral US dollars to around US$50. Samart, Mobitel and Shinawrata are the main mobile phone providers, with Mobitel offering the best and most widespread services, although calling from outside towns (countryside) is still tricky.

Post

Cambodia's national postal service offers a wide range of services, though in general things go slowly and are not always very reliable. That said, things have been getting better over the years, and you can expect for your postcard or letter to finally arrive after 5-10, depending from where you send it (avoid small towns) and to where you send it. Prices are around 2000-2,500 Riel to countries in Europe, Asia, Australia and North America, and it's slightly more expensive sending it from more remote places in the provinces. Post offices in Cambodia generally are open from around 8:00am to 5:00pm, with some regional variations. Sendings parcels is only possible from the capital Phnom Penh and it's very expensive as well. You might be better to send it from Thailand, or otherwise check private companies like DHL, TNT or UPS, which are more reliable and might even be cheaper!

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This is version 10. Last edited at 8:59 on Oct 25, 19 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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