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Mountain of the Lychees

By Linda Tancs

Phnom Kulen (translated as “mountain of the lychees”) is a popular tourist destination in Cambodia and a spot favored by locals because it is a holy mountain. The birthplace of the ancient Khmer empire, its historical (and environmental) value led to its protection as a national park. Located in Siem Reap Province, it features two waterfalls that form the basis for most tours of the area. It’s also rich in archaeological sites, one of the most popular being the “river of a thousand lingas,” boasting lingas (representations of the Hindu god Shiva) and other stone carvings. The area comprises one of the few remaining tropical forests in northwest Cambodia.


To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

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