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Ultimate Guide: Top 8 Definitely Things to Do in Kratie

Nestled along the banks of the Mekong River in northeastern Cambodia. Known for its tranquil atmosphere and stunning river views, Kratie offers travelers a peaceful escape from the bustling cities. The town is famous for being one of the best places to spot the endangered Irrawaddy dolphins, as boat trips on the Mekong allow you to observe these gentle creatures in their natural habitat.

Kratie is a great place to stop and unwind in the middle between bustling Phnom Penh Capital and the northwest jungles of Mondulkiri and Ratanakiri. Are you curious about Kratie? Hanoi Voyages will introduce you in this article. Let’s plan your trip!

Kratie Travel Guide 
Things to do in Kratie 
The Irrawaddy Dolphin: Dolphin Watching In Kratie 
Koh Rong Island 
Wat Roka Kandal – Serene Sanctuary in Kratie 
Kampi River Rapids 
100 Pillar Pagoda 
Mekong Turtle Conservation Center (MTCC) 
Wat Phnom Sombok
Wander around Katie’s central market 
The best time to visit Kratie – Kratie weather 
Where to stay in Kratie – Hotels in Kratie 
Where to eat and drink – Kratie Restaurants 
How to travel in Kratie
Phnom Penh to Kratie 
Siem reap to Kratie 
Some tips before going

Things to do in Kratie

The Irrawaddy Dolphin: Dolphin Watching In Kratie

Rare Irrawaddy dolphins in Kratie

Dolphin watching in Kratie is a unique and captivating experience that draws visitors to this charming town on the banks of the Mekong River in Cambodia. The star of the show is the Irrawaddy dolphin, a rare and endangered species known for its friendly demeanor and distinctive appearance.

These dolphins are often seen in the deep pools of the Mekong River near Kratie, where they gracefully break the surface, revealing their rounded foreheads and playful behavior. Observing them in their natural habitat is a mesmerizing and humbling encounter.

To witness these gentle creatures, visitors can embark on boat tours that take them to the heart of the Irrawaddy dolphin’s habitat. Local guides and boat operators, well-versed in the dolphins’ habits and the area’s geography, ensure a safe and educational experience. While watching the dolphins, visitors also have the opportunity to soak in the scenic beauty of the Mekong River and the lush countryside that surrounds Kratie.

Koh Rong Island

Nestled in the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Rong Island has earned its reputation as a tropical paradise, luring travelers with its pristine beaches, lush jungles, and crystal-clear waters. This Cambodian gem, often dubbed the “Maldives of Southeast Asia,” offers a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Koh Rong is a popular destination for families, couples, and groups of travelers.

Take a short boat ride to Koh Trong Island, a peaceful island in the Mekong River. Rent a bicycle to explore the island’s rural landscapes and visit local communities. Otherwise, Exploring the underwater wonders is one of the best things to do, as Koh Rong offers excellent snorkeling and diving opportunities. Coral reefs teeming with colorful marine life await beneath the surface.

Wat Roka Kandal - Serene Sanctuary in Kratie

Nestled along the serene banks of the Mekong River in Kratie, Cambodia, Wat Roka Kandal stands as a testament to the country’s rich spiritual and cultural heritage.

Explore the historic Buddhist temple of Wat Roka Kandal, known for its picturesque location on the riverbank and beautiful architecture. This unusual ancient wooden pagoda has been renovated and converted into a tiny local handicraft center, where tourists can discover a nice souvenir to take home with them. Despite its modest form, it is worth a visit to observe the magnificent stenciled inside pillars and an intricate timber roof, as well as the surrounding traditional wooden houses.

Kampi River Rapids

Kampi River Rapids is a seasonal tourist attraction in Kratie, located just a few kilometers north of Kampi Village’s dolphin watching site. Locals picnic here on weekends and public holidays throughout the dry season, which lasts from January to May. When the water level in this section of the Mekong lowers significantly during the dry season, several sandbars arise, and wooden platforms with cool shady roofs are swiftly erected over these lands. Renting hammocks and mats by the hour is possible. Wooden bridges are also installed to facilitate access to floating cottages.

The Kampi River Rapids not only offer a chance to observe these endangered dolphins but also provide a peaceful escape into the heart of Cambodia’s countryside. The scenic beauty of the surrounding landscape, with its lush greenery and tranquil waters, adds to the enchantment of the experience.

100 Pillar Pagoda

The 100 Pillar Pagoda, known locally as Wat Banan, is a remarkable historical and cultural landmark situated near the town of Battambang in Cambodia. This ancient temple complex is celebrated for its distinctive architectural design and its significant role in Cambodia’s rich heritage.

Visiting the 100 Pillar Pagoda allows travelers to immerse themselves in Cambodia’s cultural and spiritual heritage while enjoying the beauty of its natural surroundings. It’s a place where history, religion, and scenic beauty harmoniously converge, leaving a lasting impression on all who venture to explore its wonders.

Mekong Turtle Conservation Center (MTCC)

The Mekong Turtle Conservation Center (MTCC) is a vital institution dedicated to the preservation and protection of endangered freshwater turtles and tortoises, located in the Kratie Province of Cambodia. Established to address the critical plight of these species, the center plays a pivotal role in conservation efforts within the Mekong River Basin.

The MTCC offers an educational and interactive experience for visitors. Tourists can learn about the various turtle species, the challenges they face, and the efforts being made to ensure their survival.

Wat Phnom Sombok

Phnom Sombok is a rather nifty temple north of town. Situated on the only hill to be found anywhere near Kratie,

A Buddhist temple perched atop a hill. Not particularly peculiar to Southeast Asia. To get to the temple, you must climb 300 steps. Still not one-of-a-kind. What distinguishes Wat Phnom Sombok is the escort of monk statues you’ll receive while ascending the steps. Furthermore, no other hilltop temple can compete with the vistas across the Mekong landscape.

Wat Phnom Sombok stands as a tranquil oasis amid the natural beauty of Kratie, offering a blend of spirituality, culture, and breathtaking scenery. Whether you’re seeking a spiritual experience or simply a serene escape, this hilltop temple is one of the best things to do in Cambodia.

Wander around Katie's central market

Just back from the waterfront are side streets, which lead to the central market. Despite being the largest market in town, travelers should not expect to buy gifts here because it mostly serves people with everyday domestic trading activities. The ideal time to visit the market is early in the morning, when there is an abundance of freshly caught seafood and baskets of vivid fruit and vegetables.

When you’re in the market, don’t forget to try Kralan, a local delicacy in Kratie. It’s created with sticky rice, coconut milk, and red bean, steamed, and served in bamboo stems. Gourmets peel back the bamboo and begin biting on the firm yet sticky rice from the top to appreciate it.

The best time to visit Kratie - Kratie weather

There are three main seasons in Kratie: Cool and dry, hot and rainy.

  • Cool and Dry Season (November to February): This is considered the peak tourist season in Kratie. During these months, the weather is pleasantly cool, with daytime temperatures ranging from 22°C to 30°C (72°F to 86°F). Nights can be cooler, so it’s a good idea to bring a light jacket. The skies are generally clear, and rainfall is minimal, making it an excellent time for outdoor activities and sightseeing.
  • Hot Season (March to May): From March to May, Kratie experiences its hot season. Daytime temperatures can soar above 35°C (95°F), and the humidity levels can be high. This season can be less comfortable for outdoor activities, but it’s still manageable for those who can handle the heat.
  • Rainy Season (June to October): The rainy season in Kratie spans from June to October, with the heaviest rainfall occurring from July to September. During this time, the Kratie weather is hot and humid, and daily rain showers are common. The countryside is lush and green, but road conditions can deteriorate due to flooding. While it’s possible to visit during this season, be prepared for wet weather and occasional travel disruptions.

The best time to visit Kratie is the dry season, which lasts from November to March. During these months, the weather is pleasant with mild temperatures and minimal rainfall, allowing visitors to freely explore the city ​​and surrounding attractions.

Where to stay in Kratie - Hotels in Kratie

Kratie offers a range of accommodation options to suit various preferences and budgets. Here are some suggested accommodations in Kratie, Cambodia:

  • River Dolphin hotel: One of the hotel’s highlights is its rooftop terrace, which provides picturesque views of the Mekong River. It’s a great spot to relax, take in the scenery, and watch the sunset. Room categories typically include standard, superior, and deluxe rooms, each equipped with essential amenities such as air conditioning, private bathrooms, and Wi-Fi access.
  • Rajabori Villas Resort: This upscale resort is located along the banks of the Mekong River, offering guests a serene and luxurious retreat. The resort features spacious villas, a swimming pool, and a restaurant with river views.
  • Mekong Dolphin Hotel: Situated in the heart of Kratie town, this hotel provides comfortable rooms with modern amenities. It’s a convenient base for exploring the town and nearby attractions.
  • Oudom Sambath Hotel: This mid-range hotel offers well-appointed rooms, a swimming pool, and a restaurant. It’s a good option for travelers seeking comfort without breaking the bank.
  • Sorya Guesthouse: For budget-conscious travelers, Sorya Guesthouse offers affordable rooms in a convenient location. It’s a no-frills option for those looking for basic amenities.
  • Phnom Sambok Pagoda Homestay: For a unique experience, consider staying in a traditional homestay at Phnom Sambok Pagoda. This option allows you to immerse yourself in Cambodian culture and interact with local families.

Where to eat and drink - Kratie Restaurants

  • Red Sun Falling: This popular restaurant offers a mix of Western and Asian dishes with a focus on fresh ingredients. The riverside setting provides a relaxed atmosphere, and it’s a great place to enjoy sunset views.
  • Phsar Reatrey Restaurant: Located along the Mekong River, this restaurant offers a range of Khmer and Western dishes. It’s known for its seafood options, and the riverfront seating is a highlight.
  • Kratie Happy Special Pizza: If you’re in the mood for pizza, this spot is known for its delicious wood-fired pizzas. It’s a unique find in Kratie, and they also offer other Western dishes.
  • Leng Sengna: A popular local Khmer restaurant, Leng Sengna serves authentic Cambodian dishes at reasonable prices. It’s a great place to try local specialties.
  • Sorya Cafe and Restaurant: This restaurant is known for its fresh and tasty Cambodian food. It’s a local favorite, and the staff is known for their friendly service.
  • Smile De’ Cafe: If you’re looking for a cozy coffee shop, Smile De’ Cafe offers a selection of coffee and baked goods. It’s a nice place to relax and unwind.

*Some restaurants may have limited English menus, so be prepared for some language barriers when ordering.

How to travel in Kratie

Phnom Penh to Kratie

Traveling from Phnom Penh to Kratie, Cambodia, can be done by several means, and the choice often depends on your budget and preferences.

  • Bus: Taking a bus is one of the most common ways to get from Phnom Penh to Kratie. Several bus companies operate daily services between the two cities. The journey typically takes around 5 to 7 hours, depending on road conditions and stops along the way. Some buses are more comfortable and offer air conditioning, while others are more basic. Mekong Express and Giant Ibis are reputable bus companies with good safety records.
  • Private Taxi or Shuttle: You can hire a private taxi or shuttle service to take you from Phnom Penh to Kratie. This option is more expensive but offers greater comfort and flexibility. It’s a good choice if you’re traveling with a group or have a lot of luggage.
  • Domestic Flight: While not as common, there are occasional domestic flights between Phnom Penh and Kratie. This option is the fastest but tends to be more expensive. Flight schedules may vary, so it’s essential to check with local airlines for availability.

Siem reap to Kratie

The distance between Kratie and Siem Reap is 158 miles, or approximately 252 kilometers. There are 2 ways to get from Kratie to Siem Reap, including van and car. The fastest way to travel is by car, which takes approximately 6 hours.

  • By van: There are 2 travel classes for this journey, including: Standard and Comfort.
  • By car: Cars include a driver and room for up to 4 passengers to fulfill basic passenger necessities. This option is more comfortable and the pickup and dropoff locations are flexible. Conditions and amenities vary by provider. It has 14 departures a day, or 98 departures a week. And There are 3 travel classes for this journey, including: Standard, SUV and Comfort.

Some tips before going

  • It’s recommended to have cash on hand, as ATMs and credit card acceptance can be limited.
  • Avoid touching or disturbing the Irrawaddy dolphins to ensure their well-being.
  • Respect local customs and traditions, such as dressing modestly when visiting temples and removing shoes when entering sacred sites.


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