Kampot City is the capital of Cambodia's Kampot Province (southeastern Cambodia) with population around 50,000. This is actually a riverside town located on Praek Tuek Chhu River. The distance from downtown to the cruise ship terminal (at Kampot Container Port on the Gulf of Thailand) is approx 5 km (3 mi).
Large-sized cruise ships dock at Kampot Container Port and their passengers are transported to downtown via buses. Among the best-known tourist attractions are Bokor National Park (Bokor Mountain), Kampot Mangroves (longtail boat tours), pepper farms, Durian plantations, Salt Fields, Cham Fishing Village, Colonial Railway Station, Old Prison, Old Bridge, Tada Waterfall.
Port Kampot was established in 1840 by King Ang Duong (who constructed a road linking the port to the capital Oudong) as the country's only international seaport. Back then, it served mainly the shipping trade conducted by Anglo-Chinese merchants from Singapore.
When Cambodia was ruled by France (1863-1953) as part of French Indochina, Kampot was the protectorate's largest and most important seaport - before Port Sihanoukville (aka Kampong Som) was developed. Downtown Kampot, unlike most Cambodian provincial capitals, is dominated by 19th-century colonial buildings. The main export is high-quality Kampot pepper. The city is also the gateway to Preah Monivong Bokor National Park (1993-established, total area ~1423 km2 / 550 mi2). By road, Kampot is linked directly to Cambodia's capital Phnom Penh (distance ~150 km / 92 mi via highway NR41) with drive time ~3,5 to 5 hours (depending on road conditions and traffic). A railway also links Kampot with Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville.
As cruise port, Kampot is included in the schedules of mainly luxury brand lines - like Crystal, Oceania, Silversea. Construction works on Kampot International Port (new cruise port terminal) officially started on August 9, 2018. The ceremony was attended by Thong Khon (Cambodia's Minister of Tourism) and Cheav Tay (Kampot Province's Governor).
For the project, the Cambodian government received from ADB (Asian Development Bank) concessional loans for investments in tourism infrastructure in three coastal provinces for improving their inland waterway transportation and interconnectivity.
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