Because of Cambodia’s generally flat countryside and large-scale deforestation, the country is not a major trekking destination, with far more rewarding opportunities to be found in its neighbours, Laos, Vietnam and Thailand.

However, if you are here for other reasons and want to get into what little wild country remains, there are a few areas worth exploring.

Virachey National Park, close to both Vietnam and Laos, is the focus of 2-8 day treks into the realm of the animist Tanop People, inhabiting an area of grasslands, ancient forest and upland trails. As with all Cambodian ‘eco’ destinations, despite its status as an ASEAN Heritage Park, illegal logging continues to threaten this ecosystem.

Although some of the larger species such as Tigers, Elephants, Leopards and Bears are very occasionally spotted, Gibbons, Hornbills and many other birds still make this an attractive trekking destination.

Also in this general region, there are trekking trails around Stung Treng, to visit the forested area of the Mekong River and the Silk Islands. Other hikes, from 1-3 days take in the hill tribes and Yam Lok Crater Lake in Ratanakiri.

The Cardamom Mountains is another of Cambodia’s cherished wilderness areas, but is likewise subject to illegal logging and poaching. The trekking here can be hard going, and accommodation Spartan, but it’s worth it if you enjoy relative remoteness and wildlife or bird spotting.

The Wildlife Alliance community project at Chi Phat is a good base of operations for trekking into the wilderness in the Cardamoms, and is a groundbreaking enterprise, successfully transforming the local economy towards ecotourism.

A range of treks to visit its wildlife, waterfalls, Jar Burial site and mangroves last from 1-4 days, and can also include activities such as kayaking and mountain biking.

A popular day trek is to Kulen Mountain from Siem Reap, which takes you to the River of a Thousand Lingas, a Khmer era stone-carved underwater river feature and a waterfall. In this area, treks around the temples of Angkor are also a healthy way to get around the great monuments.

In the south of Cambodia, the coastal Ream National Park is a good place to wander for a day’s hiking along its beaches and coastal fringes.