Phnom SomBok is the second most popular tourist attraction in Kratie, Cambodia No mean feat right! OK, so Kratie might not be awash with tourists right now, but it is a pleasant small Cambodian town on the Mekong river.
The tourists will be back i’m sure.
Phnom Sam Bok Pagoda
Theres basically one hill in Kratie. It seems to be a thing in Buddhism to make pagodas with lots of stairs. I don’t like stairs, but at least they help you lose weight.
Want to know how to lose weight in Asia from a fat guy? Read here .
Phnom Sombok is about 10 km from Kratie Town, and is usually included in a deal with a Tuk-Tuk as part of dolphin watching.
To read about Dolphin Watching click here
Phnom Sam Bok Pagoda is actually pretty nice
Despite all of the stairs it is probably one of the most beautiful and interesting pagodas I have been to. Lots of artistic interpretations of things. Lot of statues and some interesting art work that shows Buddhism is definitely a religion. A particular favorite of mine being a painting showing dogs eating the arseholes of male and female adulterers. Another showing how the devil beer will also make you go to Buddhist hell.
Do not listen to western people that say “Buddhism isn’t a religion”. It is. You can read more about why this grinds my gears here
Meeting a 95 year old monk
I also got to meet a 95 year old monk. He was bang on up for having selfies with me. I’m gonna give him his own article, but I worked out that in his 95 years despite never leaving Cambodia he’d lived in 8 countries. Look at the history of Cambodia and do the math. French colonial Cambodia, Kingdom of Cambodia 1, Khmer Republic, Democratic Kampuchea , Peoples Republic of Kampuchea, State of Cambodia, UNTAC, and Kingdom of Cambodia part 2.
He wanted me to some how print a and send him his photo, something I am still thinking about the logistics of.
And of course they have Monkeys!
I love a monkey me, but my word are they naughty bastards. Unlike the monkeys of Koh Rong , these ones looked sinister and mean!!! I’m glad I did not have food to temp them.
Overall on Phnom Sombok Pagoda
There’s not a whole heap of stuff to do in Kratie, which makes this place worth the visit. I’m not personally a huge Pagoda fan, but as Pagodas go this one was pretty cool. Lots of cool statues and of course nothing says “god is great” more than a mural depicting adulterers having their assholes eaten.