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Phnom Sambok

Phnom Sambok is a natural and historical site located in Thma Kre commune, Kratie district, about 11 kilometers north of Kratie provincial town. One of the main cultural and tourist attractions in Kratie, it was developed during the Sangkum Reastr Niyum regime of then-Prince Norodom Sihanouk. The site features beautiful landscape, including a huge pond west of the mountain foot. The pond is full of clear water and natural plants. The mountain has two peaks, one dull and the other pointed, and has a lush forest filled with birds. A concrete staircase makes the mountaintop accessible. Once at the top, visitors are rewarded with a beautiful panoramic view of the countryside, especially the Mekong River. There are also a number of places to relax.  

The mountain is steeped in legend. There once was a king named Chakrei Earsaravarman, who was a son of King Hathak Athireachvarman. After Chakrei Earsaravarman ascended to the throne, he asked his official to find a gold mine. The mine, which was very close to the foot of the mountain, turned out to be full of gold, so the people living nearby called the place Kanliang Sambo Meas. The name was later changed to Phnom Sambok Meas, and then changed again to Phnom Sambok, as it is known today.  

The legend said, in the early 15th century, there was a monk named Neak Voan, who was a classmate of Neak Sen, another monk and the teacher of Thon crocodile. Monk Neak Voan went to Sambok mountaintop to mediate. Because the monk knew much about ritual and magic, many people climbed the mountain to learn from him. Wat Phnom Sambok has stood there ever since.

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