Explore Cambodian traditions and local crafts in a peaceful rural village.
The Village homestay Cheung Kok in Kampong Cham province is a community of farmers and artisans. It was established by French non-for-profit organisation AMICA whose mission is to build other realities for tomorrow through sustainable rural development. The Village homestay in Cheung Kok is peacefully nestled amongst rice fields and tall palm trees, seven kilometres from the centre of Kampong Cham. Once in the village, you can book one of their popular Village tours to learn about traditional handicrafts made by local women or if you have more time we would recommend to stay overnight in the family homestays to learn about the Khmer culture and enjoy the hospitality of local people.
Cheung Kok village in Kampong Cham is one of the few places where you can just slow down, stop and enjoy your surroundings with hospitable people. Not only that, but your visit also helps to support local women and their families.
From Aline, tourism manager, guide and English teacher at AMICA project: “I work as the tourism manager at the Village homestay Cheung Kok, Kampong Cham province. I also run tours around the village and teach English three times a day to local children. I am passionate about helping my community and every day I am able to see the benefits of AMICA and tourism in Cheung Kok.
Through the community store, we are able to support local artisan women. We purchase a huge range of products made by the ladies to sell in the store: silk krama weaving, cotton bags and purses, coconut bowls, jewellery and much, much more! The profits from the store directly support the ladies. Also, some of the money helps to support other future education, health, water and tourism projects.
Since the beginning of the project, we have seen many positive changes in our village. It has enabled us to provide English teaching for the children. We hope to see them as the future tour guides for visitors coming to the village. Also, more and more families are interested in hosting tourists through homestays and we now have thirty houses signed up!
Visitors staying in the Village homestay Cheung Kok can gain an authentic experience of Cambodian rural life. More importantly, it directly supports our community through education, water and health projects and helps to provide sustainable forms of income for local families. It’s a win-win!”
The Village homestay Cheung Kok (Kampong Cham) is a small community of farmers and artisans. Cheung Kok is a typical rural Cambodian village; traditional wooden Khmer houses, rice fields and the warmth of Khmer hospitality. From the main highway, five minutes down a dirt road winding through rice paddies and you will arrive at Cheung Kok. At the entrance is the village school and local handicraft store.
As families go about their daily life, visitors are invited to tour the village or stay overnight in one of the homestays. Local guide Aline will take you on a tour of the village and describe the local lifestyle. Information signs placed around Cheung Kok also give more information about traditional houses, rice production processes and handicrafts. Not to be missed is a visit to see ladies weaving traditional silk krama on large looms. Days of work go into one scarf, and all products can be purchased from the local store.
Cheung Kok village is supported through AMICA, which has helped to fund education, water and health projects for the community. The local school is just one example of the positive impact that tourism has had on the village. The local store stocks handmade products made by local women and all profits from the store go directly to the community and support ongoing projects.
The Village homestay Cheung Kok (Kampong Cham) is a small Cambodian village, easily explored by foot. Road access is from the main highway, near Phnom Pros/Phnom Srey mountains. A small Cheung Kok sign labels the dirt road to the village.
Parking is available next to the entrance for larger vehicles, motorbikes or bicycles. Bicycles can be hired as part of the homestay packages.
There is a small handicraft store selling goods handmade by local women. For drinks and snacks there are small stores in amongst the village (however opening hours and stock can be irregular). Sharing a meal with a local family at Cheung Kok must be arranged in advance, through a tour (link) or homestay(link).
The village offers overnight homestay packages with local families. Each house is raised and access is via wooden steps. Sleeping facilities are either a private room or shared space in a family home. A mattress, mosquito net, and all bedding materials are provided. Bathroom’s contain a Cambodian style squat toilet and bucket showers and each house has electricity and drinking water. Khmer-style meals are included with the option of western-style breakfast.
Only have a short time? A tour of the village is a must (approximately 1 hour). Wander through Cheung Kok’s inviting pathways and learn about local craft-making, rice production and the Cambodian way of life. Finish your tour in Cheung Kok’s store and support the local community through purchasing handmade artisanal products.
A full day tour, with a local guide, is for those wishing to experience hands-on what life is like in the Village homestay Cheung Kok. Tour the village, share Khmer style lunch with a local family before a hands-on crafting lesson. Spend the afternoon relaxing in the village or ride a bicycle to nearby Phnom Pros/Phnom Srey mountains.
Embrace the daily rituals of rural life to discover and learn about the reality of Cambodia through the eyes of local people. Immerse yourself and spend a night in one of the traditional houses perched on stilts. It is a great place to relax and enjoy the slow pace of village life with some amazing local Khmer food and lovely company. There are plenty of opportunities to observe local craft making and you will also be able to buy locally made products. You can also use a bicycle to travel to Phnom Pros/Phnom Srey mountains for sunset. Alternatively, extend your time for a 1 night/2 day experience (link) and head into Kampong Cham town. This way you can explore further afield to ancient temples or Koh Pen island for its natural beauty.
Walking in the village and relaxing in the rice fields
Ask Aline, the local guide, to show you to the bamboo shelter, a short walk from the village. This beautiful hand-made is a masterpiece in itself. The shelter is perched perfectly on the edge of rice fields and a historical lake – a perfect spot if you are spending more time in the village through a homestay.
Bicycles are available for hire and are included during extended stays (homestays) in the village. There are many places to explore close to the Village homestay in Cheung Kok or alternatively further into Kampong Cham. ‘Getting lost’ and having unplanned encounters with local people can be some of the best experiences you will have in Cambodia and cycling is a great way to do this! Alternatively, stick to the main roads and visit Phnom Pros/Phnom Srey and ancient temples in Kampong Cham.
Near Cheung Kok Village, there is a wide range of Wats. Wat Nokor is a Buddhist temple well worth a visit. The region also has several pagodas. One of the best known is the famous Vat Maha Leap, one of the last wats build in wood. The region also has several rubber plantations that can be visited.
The Village homestay Cheung Kok is located approximately 7 km west from the centre of Kampong Cham and approximately two and half hours from Phnom Penh.
To get to the village from Kampong Cham take national road 7 out of town (towards Phnom Penh). The turn off to the Village homestay Cheung Kok is located before Phnom Pros/Phnom Srey mountain. From the national road, stop when you reach Ampil Health Centre (look for a small wooden sign on your left hand-side indicating the way). Down a dirt road on the left, it is a 10-minute walk or 5-minute moto. If unsure – ask a local for the way to Cheung Kok, or AMICA and they can point you in the right direction.
A tuktuk from Kampong Cham will cost you around $5 USD. Hiring a moto for the day is between $5-7 and bicycle approximately $3, check with your guesthouse.
Sorya offers regular return buses from Phnom Penh to Kampong Cham which take around 2.5-3 hours and cost $7.50 one way. The bus goes all the way into Kampong Cham, however ask the driver to stop when you reach 7kms before Kampong Cham (close to Phnom Pros/Phnom Srey). This way you save on tuk-tuks from the town.
Alternatively, a private taxi costs $30 one way or $50 return from Phnom Penh.
Both can be booked, hassle-free via bookmebus.com.
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My visit to Amica project has been a good surprise and I would definitely recommend to go there and especially during the rainy season, you could admire the beautiful landscape of rice field. So what does it make special ?
In Cheung kok village, the site offers many experiences in term of local, tradition, culture, history and heritage. there are visisble signs of unique culture and tradition life in most Cambodian villages.
The members of the local community are very welcoming and friendly event they don't speak all good english. . We felt like being friends of them and it was one of the strongest points of the visit. People opened their home to us and enabled us to be part of their community for the few days we spent there. As the village is relatively small, after few hours visitors had the feeling that they knew local area.
You can spend a night there to see the famous bamboo bridge and and the Phnom Srey and Phnom Sros temples. You should rent a bike and look around, it is a nice experience.
Nobody speak English at the site, but it is beautiful.
Amica is a very nice project; so far It is one the best project I saw in terms of sustainability and eco tourism. It is a real community where you do feel like living as a resident. You eat with the host family who does cook very well, you play with the children… Every members of the village is pleased to welcome you. So far, there are not so many activities to do if you stay more than one day. However, I can real experienced the Cambodian rural life and see the work of the weavers and of the farmer working in the rice field. The NGO amica succeed to involve the village in the ecotourism project that I never saw it before! So I really recommend it to come and meet Aline, our fantastic local guide!
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