Cambodia’s Cardamom Mountains

There are two things that I love to do when I travel: trekking and community-based tourism. So when I was planning my trip to Cambodia a few years ago, I was thrilled to find Chi Phat.

I was of course planning a visit to the Angkor Wat Historical Park and wasn’t going to pass up history in Phnom Penh. But I wanted something a little more special and off-the-beaten-path. When I found out about Cambodia’s Cardamom Mountains, I knew that was where I wanted to go. Chi Phat is a community-based eco-tourism initiative there.

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Theravada & Mahayana Buddhism: Safe Diff?

When people think of Asia and religion, Buddhism is usually what comes to the forefront of most people’s minds. What many don’t always realize is that there are a different schools of thought within Buddhism. Zen Buddhism is pretty widely known, but the two sects that I’ve become familiar with through my travels are a bit less widely known. So, I’d like to explore some of the similarities and differences between Theraveda and Mahayana Buddhism.

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Cambodia’s Past Blurring into the Present

Just a few days ago, “First They Killed My Father” began streaming on Netflix. The movie, based on the book with the same name, follows the story of a girl who is forced to become a child solider while her family is sent to labor camps under the rule of the Khmer Rouge. The other famous film about this time in Cambodian history is “The Killing Fields,” that tells the true story of a journalist and his interpreter. While the genocide in Cambodia that occurred from 1975 to 1979 under the rule of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge may be generally known, the legacy of that time that stretches into the present is much less so.

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Glimpses of a Week in Cambodia

In order to use up the last of my allotted vacation days, and to take advantage of living in Southeast Asia, I took a trip to Cambodia. I made the absolute most of the week I was there and went to Siem Reap, Phnom Penh and the Cardamom Mountains. Check out my video recap!