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PREAH KO TEMPLE

Preah Ko was the first temple to be built in the ancient and now defunct city of Hariharalaya (in the area that today is called Roluos), some 15 kilometers south-east of the main group of temples at Angkor, Cambodia. The temple was built under the Khmer King Indravarman I in 879 to honor members of the king's family, whom it places in relation with the Hindu deity Shiva.

After the Khmer king Jayavarman II founded the Khmer empire in 802 A.D., he finally established his capital at Hariharalaya. Indravarman I was the nephew of Jayavarman II. When he ascended to the throne, he ordered the construction first of Preah Ko, which was dedicated in 879, and later of the temple-mountain known as the Bakong. It is likely that this building program was made possible by the king's peaceful reign and his ability to draw income from the expanding empire. A restoration of the towers took place in early 1990s, financed by German government.

Preah Ko consists of six brick towers arranged in two rows of three towers each perched on a sandstone platform. The towers face east, and the front central tower is the tallest. The sanctuaries are dedicated to three divinized forefathers of Indravarman and their respective wives. The front central tower is dedicated to Jayavarman II, the founder of the Khmer empire.[1] The tower to the left is dedicated to Prithivindreshvara, King Indravarman's father; the tower to the right to Rudreshvara, his grandfather. The three rear towers are dedicated to the wives of these three men.The central towers all bear images of the Hindu god Shiva.

Preah Ko, which means 'the sacred bull' (Shiva's vehicle Nandi), was built by Indravarman I in 879. It is part of the Roluos group of monuments about 13 kilometers east of Siem Riep. The temple is distinguished from others in the area by the unusual arrangement of its six central towers, which stand in two rows facing east. 

The three towers on the east side are staggered so that the central tower is slightly further to the west. This tower is dedicated to Shiva, the Hindu god closely associated with the rule of Jayavarman II, the founder of the Khmer Empire. The tower to the north was dedicated to the founder of Preah Ko, and the tower to the south was dedicated to the King's father. Each of these shrines once contained a statue, but they were removed at some time in the past.


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WILDLIFE

Cambodia is home to some of the most significant populations of mammalian wildlife in Asia. Endangered species such as leopards, tigers, bantams, gaur, barking deer and the near-extinct Kouprey the Kingdom's national animal and the world's rarest large mammal have been sighted off the beaten path. In addition, wild elephants still roam remote pristine forests and monkeys and snakes abound in mountainous areas. While the international market for endangered species poses a great threat to the preservation of the Kingdom?s wildlife, conservationists strive to research, document and preserve them.


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FRESH WATER DOLPHIN

Nowadays the dolphins live mainly in the rivers and waterways of Kratie and Stung Treng provinces. The number of these mammals is estimated to be between 40 and 60 and they are often seen travelling in small groups of 6 to 10 individuals. The females usually give birth to young once every two years most often during the months of June to August. The young dolphins are about 1m in length at birth and suckle milk. By adulthood the dolphins can attain a length of over 2.5m and weigh up to 180kg. Their diet consists mainly of small fish, shellfish and snails. The dolphins can swim at speeds up to 40km per hour and stay submerged for periods between five and ten minutes.


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MEKONG RIVER TRIP TO LAOS

The Mekong River between Stung Treng and the Laos border is very light on population and heavy on beautiful scenery. Boulder outcroppings, numerous sets of rapids, swirling pothole currents, wide sweeping stretches of river and forested landscape along the banks all await the boat traveler. It makes for a great trip, either for the traveler that wants to continue on to Laos or for those wanting to enjoy a wild stretch of the Mekong in Cambodia. 

The trip is difficult to downright impossible to make on this shallow stretch of the Mekong during the dry season, with cont less sunken islands and a virtual forest of trees growing right in the middle of the river. The trip becomes an obstacle course for the boat drivers this time of the year, as they carefully try to choose the best way to guide their craft through the maze that nature has created without losing a propeller to the river. The best time of the year to take this trip is from May to November when sufficient upstream rains have raised the river to a level that allows the boats to pass through carefully.

There is not a whole lot to do once you get to the border area, but travelers can leave their passport with Cambodian immigration (at the small checkpoint on the west bank of the river) and cross to the Laos side to eat at a riverside restaurant and look at the tiny market in the Laos village of Geedahn. Cambodian immigration officers may ask you see them, but it is not a fee set by the central government so you don?t have to pay it. There is also a guesthouse to stay at near this village (on the Laos side of the river, but a couple of hundred meters south along the riverbank where it is still Cambodia). 

Which was built here for border traders that lose the day light hours and need a place to spend the night. It?s a nice enough place, but overpriced, with a room that includes two big beds and a fan going for US$ 8 a night. Electricity is running between dusk and midnight. To take the trip, head down to the riverbank area (near the small bullet boats just east of the pier) in Stung Treng town before 8:30 am and talk to one of the operators of the small freight boats. The fare is 15,000 riel (one way) and the trip to the border area takes about 5 ? hours, but is cut down to just over three hours on the trip back south as the swift current on this stretch of the Mekong pushes the boats right along. <

If you want a faster journey, approach one of the small fiberglass boat operators, the ones that have the 40-hp outboard motors-they want US$ 20-$25 (one-way) to make the trip- but if you are looking for a quick trip or fast fun, the trip time going upriver is cut down to only 1 ? hours. The slow boats are fast enough coming back downstream so you could save money by grabbing one of those on the return trip. For those wanting to cross into Laos using this route you will need a Laos?s visa in your possession and you also need to stop at the main police station in Stung Treng town (see map) to get a letter of permission to cross the border at this point. This is shown to Cambodian immigration will not let you stamp out of the country without this letter.


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PHNOM PREAH THEAT

Phnom Preah Theat is located in Thmey Village and Commune, Stung Treng District, about 2 kilometes (5mn) from Provincial Town. It is a Nature Wildlife and Preserves.

The Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng is one of the natural sanctuaries of Cambodia and happens to be one of the chief tourist attractions in Stung Treng. The Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng is situated in the quaint realms of the hamlet better known as Thmey. Tourists flock to the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng to get a glimpse of the dense forests of the reserve as well as its unique and rare wildlife.

In fact, some of the grounds of the Phnom Preah Theat in Stung Treng in Cambodia are so thickly filled with vegetation that it is impossible for the sun's rays to penetrate them. There are some pathways that run across the entire length of the Phnom Preah Theat in Stung Treng. These pathways have been constructed so that tourists can walk through them comfortably as the terrains of the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng are quite 'jungly'. However, tourists are not permitted to walk by themselves. The professional guides of the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng escort them through the jungles. This they do to prevent the tourists from encountering wild beasts or getting entangled with some branch of a tree. 

So don't start at the slightest rustle of a leaf under your feet because you can be rest assured that your guide won't take you anywhere near a zone that snakes haunt. The conservationists and zoologists of Cambodia and the globe take active measures in the form of breeding programs and feeding programs to prevent the beasts of the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng from reaching the brinks of extinction. The environmentalists and botanists, on the other hand, always look for opportunities so that they can carry out their afforestation measures in the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng. Some of the species of wildlife that the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng is home to are extremely rare and have no chance of survival on this planet unless they avail of the growth and development measures practiced in the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng. For the Phnom Preah Theat, Stung Treng is full of ecosystems and ecological niches that make its environment perfectly compatible for animals to exist.

Nearly six years after my previous visit, just off National Road 2 on the way from Phnom Penh to Tonle Bati, I called into Wat Preah Theat. There's a new vihara under construction and if you didn't know it was there, you'd miss the remains of Prasat Preah Theat, as its tucked away at the back of the pagoda compound. The monks were meditating so no-one was around to pump for details, which was a similar story six years ago, so I'm still no further forward in understanding the history behind this temple. Can anyone shine a light on Prasat Preah Theat, located in the Bati district? There's a couple of prasats that go under the same name, so make sure its the Bati one.


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HANG KHO BA PAGODA

Hang Kho Ba Pagoda is the cultural and historical site, located at Hang Kho Ba Village, Hang Kho Commune, Steung Treng District in Six-Kilometer distance from the provincial town by the road to the airport, then turning left across the river of Se Kong. The pagoda of Hang Kho Ba is over 300 years. The local people there speak Lao majorly. Steung Treng province has been recognized in two special characteristics:
- The province riches in sweet tamarind fruit. 
- The province riches in Pa Si Yi fish .
- Pava fish.Hang Kho Ba Pagoda, Stung Treng is one of the most beautiful pagodas in this Cambodian town. Pagodas are basically temples that were built to worship Buddha. These pagodas are synonymous to Buddhism. In Cambodia most of the population is Buddhist. This temple is also known for the design that is etched on its walls. Hang Kho Ba Pagoda, Stung Treng is located in the Hang Kho Commune. 

While exploring the various Tourist Attractions in Stung Treng travelers cannot miss the Hang Kho Ba Pagoda, Stung Treng. It is, in fact, an important part of the cultural history of the city. This place was built 300 years ago. Despite its age the place is still pretty strong and you will be able to appreciate the beauty of its design. 

Apart from the aestheticism that it reflects, the Hang Kho Ba Pagoda, Stung Treng has a very nice location. Travelers find the surroundings really enchanting. You can easily access this spot of sightseeing in Stung Treng from the nearest airport. It is just six kilometers from the airfield. The Mekong River is quite near to the structure making its location even more hypnotizing. If you come to Hang Kho Ba Pagoda, Stung Treng you will see various Buddhist artifacts. These temples are not only places of worship but also act as museums by providing information to the curious souls. After sightseeing if you feel tired and hungry then you can have Pava fish in lunch. It is the special menu that can be tasted in this part of the country.


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KANTUY KO

Kantuy Ko, Stung Treng is a place that works as a sanctuary to plants and animal here. If you want to take the pleasure of fresh air and greenery then this is the place to visit. In fact that is the reason why travelers love to come here year after year. In fact it is one of the most visited sightseeing spots in Stung Treng. Kantuy Ko, Stung Treng is quite near to the Samki Village. 

That is why you can access Kantuy Ko, Stung Treng from the village. This serves two purposes. One is you will be able to interact with the village people and the other of course is to explore the sanctuary. The collection here is a very good one. You will find all kinds of animals here. 

Travelers will be able to reach Kantuy Ko, Stung Treng very easily from the center of the city. The animals that are available here include many endangered species as well. You will find tigers and other mammals. There are various kinds of reptiles here too. 

As far as the plants are concerned, you will find a number of varieties of them here. Kantuy Ko, Stung Treng is definitely one of the perfect Tourist Attractions in Stung Treng that provides a combination of knowledge and thrill. The Indochinese Tiger is one of the main attractions here. It is one of the endangered species in the world. 

Like other attractions in Stung Treng, this one too promises a few wonderful moments. You can capture those moments in your camera so you can refer to them later.


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OU PONG MOAN RESORT

Ou Pong Moan Resort is the natural and man-made resort which locates at Pong Moan village, Ou Pong Moan Commune, Steung Treng District in nine-Kilomter distance from the provincial town. The resort locates at the turning point to the provinces of Ratanakiri, Kratie and Steugh treng. At Ou Pong Moan resort, tourists are usually interested in: 
- Ou Pong Moan has water source from the ground. The water source locates at 80-kilometer distance from the recreational site and flows all seasons. The water is suitable for swimming. - At the riverside, there are small Kho Chos for leisure and resting. - 10 Kwh electricity dam which is favorable for tourist development activities.


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