This is the most sacred of all Khmer Pilgrimage sites situated in a picturesque location just over 1 hour drive from Siem Reap. Approached by a scenic mountain road it gives some of the best landscape views in the Area. The falls are a popular bathing place for local families. At festival times the Wats and Reclining Buddha are a place of great atmosphere. There is an area of Hindu lingas on the riverbed; though nothing as extensive as Kbal Spean. Above the falls there are a number of temple sites and carved animal figures scattered around on the hill. The upper falls are easy to see; the water thunders over the edge down a couple of steps to the main falls which are spectacular. At the base of the falls is a large pool used for swimming. Kulen is a great place for people watching and for photographing the river and waterfalls all year round.
Phnom Kulen is an Important place for Buddhist Pilgrims from all,over Cambodia. At Festival times the mountain has many hundreds of visitors who pay homage to Buddha by praying and take park in ritual ablutions. There are dozens of shrines and figures up here at the main site plus many more scattered over the hillsides. At other times Phnom Kulen is a place where Cambodians get together in family groups to pray, dine and bathe in the cool waters. It is good place to meet locals as relatively few foreigners go here. Those who do are warmly welcomed!
To get to Phnom Kulen you have to drive via Banteay Srey and take a road north for about half an hour to the base of the hill. A steep toll road takes you 15kms to the site. It is a narrow road in places with only room for one vehicle to pass; so it is one way road until 12 pm. After this time, the only way is down!