Kampong Cham Bamboo Bridge Bike Ride
On the morning of Saturday, February 20th, we made the 6 hour journey to Kampong Cham via bus. There were 2 stops along the way and I mostly slept and read.
We arrived and went to our local guide’s house for lunch in the afternoon. The food was fantastic and we gobbled it down since were all very hungry by then. For us vegetarians there was vegetable curry, vegetable fried noodles (they were pink noodles… yummy, though weird looking), fried mushrooms, and a really good sauteed vegetable dish. For desert we had those mini bananas, the only kind I will eat. It was all $5.
In the afternoon our group walked to the market so a few people could buy traditional scarves, like the one on this lady’s head:
The rest of the afternoon was spent on our bike ride over the bamboo bridge to a 20km long, 4km wide island with 100,000 inhabitants in the Mekong River. Every year in the dry season they build a bridge out of bamboo strong and big enough to hold a single car.
The people on the island grow tobacco, sesame, and peanuts, among other things. They take their goods over the bridge via horsecart to sell in markets.
Once again there were lots of adorable little kids running out and waving at us, yelling “hello!!!” and high fiving us as we rode by.
Our first stop was at a tobacco plantation. We looked around, talked to some cute kids, then went across the street to check out a temple. The kids followed us around and a lady in our group taught one of the little girls to shake hands and say “How do you do?”
We rode on to a house where they gave us some of the local fruit and baked sweet potatoes to eat. I played volley ball and jump rope with the little kids living there. I’m way out of practice with my jump rope, though…. One kid had a new toy: a battery-operated shiny gold buffalo that walked, moo’d, and had red evil eyes. They loved it.
After the bike ride we had dinner at a charity restaurant and turned in early. We were only in Kampong Cham for 1 day so I can’t say much about the town, other than I liked it alright. Tomorrow is a loooong travel day to Kampot via Phnom Penh.