Situated in a suburb of Khemarak Phoumin city is a 20m waterfall, which runs down into a huge pond filled with fish as swimmers hurtle into the water from a rope swing tied to a tree.
But what attracts many people to Ta Chat waterfall is the unique mode of transportation offered at the site – a modestly built funicular train to bring you to the top of the waterfall.
Though funiculars are very common in many countries around the world, Ta Chat waterfall’s is the only one in Cambodia. The journey takes three minutes or so.
“This was the initiative of our big boss to construct the mountain elevator in order to ease the walk to the top, especially for older people,” says Darng Deam, manager of the resort.
The big boss Deam is referring to is Tea Vinh, a navy commander in the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces, who developed the area under the name Tourist Community Area of Ta Chat.
“Tea Vinh aims to help the community to earn a living from the tourism sector around the city. Importantly, he has helped develop the town’s leisure places in order to attract more people to come,” Deam says.
The resort has a 20m waterfall, a 5m waterfall, as well as shallow water rapids for those who wish to bathe in quieter surroundings.
“During the dry season, the waterfall flows very little water into the pool. April and May, the very hot months, have the least water and are the lowest season for tourists,”34-year-old Deam says.
“But with the recent rains, the resort is looking fresh and the water has started flowing into the pool and swimmers will start to come gradually. In the rainy season we see a lot of water flow from June to January, we normally welcome at least 300 to 500 people per day.”
Though the resort’s onsite restaurant recently closed as they are looking for a chef, some 3km from the waterfall is the Bopha Chantrea Restaurant and Guesthouse to welcome visitors who want to eat and spend the night in the community.
“We have a guesthouse with prices from $20 to $25 per night and bungalows for $35 per night,” says Phem Chanthol, Bopha Chantrea’s manager.
“People can hire a speedboat for $30 per hour to visit the mangrove forest, community houses and see mountain views,” he adds.
Ta Chat waterfall is located in Mondul Seima district’s Ta Chat village, about 20km from Khemarak Phoumin city, Koh Kong province.
A ticket to visit Ta Chat waterfall costs 2,000 riel ($0.50) per person, with the funicular costing the same price. Parking is 3,000 riel for a car and 1,000 riel for a motorbike.
For more information and to book accommodation, you can call 097 258 85 22.