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Bonn Visak Bochea - Mid May, one day
This nationwide festival commemorates the day of the Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and death. Held during the sixth full moon of the lunar calendar, it involves chanting, sermons and a candlelit procession to the wat.
Traditional festivals
There follows a list of the more important national and regional festivals in the Khmer calendar:
Victory Day
7 January
Lunar new yearThis national holiday commemorates the fall of Pol Pot’s regime on 7 January 1979.
Lunar New Year
Lunar New Year is celebrated widely around the country by Cambodia’s Chinese and Vietnamese communities. Although it is not a public holiday in Cambodia, many businesses are closed at this time.
Women’s Day
8 March
This national holiday is marked by colourful parades.
Bonn Chaul Chhnam – Khmer New Year
Mid April, three days (14-16 April)
Khmer New Year (PP Munic Govt)Bonn chaul chhnam is the Khmer equivalent of songkran in Thailand and phimai in Laos. Marking the end of the harvest season, it generally lasts for three days, during which time Cambodians clean and decorate their houses, make offerings at the local temple and throw water at each other as a form of blessing. City streets are decorated and brightly lit in the evenings and special cultural, entertainment and sporting events are organised especially for the occasion.
A new destination - Mondulkiri
so make sure you carry something warm. It is the most sparsely populated province in the country and almost half the 30,000 inhabitants come from the Pnong minority group. The capital town, Sen Monorom, have a population of about 21% of total population.

This is the land of mountains and primary rainforest, and home to several hill tribes. Mondukiri is Cambodia’s largest province, Eighty percent of the population belongs to tribal minorities with the majority of them being Phnong. In their own language, Phnong means “ people of the mountains” Ten different ethnic groups, all with varying languages and traditions, make up the tribal minorities.

The remaining 20 percent of Mondukiri’s population are a mixture of Khmer, Chinese & Muslim Chams. The people live mainly off the land, planting dry rice, fruit trees, and a variety of vegetables. Mondukiri’s high elevation ensures a cool climate and equitable rain. The government is encouraging the planting of strawberries, coffee, rubber trees, and cashew nuts.

Bou Sra Waterfall is located at Pich Chinda district in 43Km from the provincial town by red soil road. Boo Sra is the most beautiful waterfall in Mondokiri and shared into three stages. This double drop waterfall is an unforgiving journey of 37Km from Sen Monorom, but it quite impressive, the upper tire dropping some 20m and the lower tier 40Km. To get to the bottom of the lower tier, you have to cross the river and take a left further down the track. There is a Pnong village of Pichinda where you can pick up some very basic food.

Source: Destination Cambodia (International for the hospitality industry in Cambodia Newsletter No. 005 – July- September 2005)

Bike Fest 2012, a new feature in tourists'eye in Cambodia
At a time when big bikes are gaining popularity in Cambodia, bikers eager to show off their wheels will have a chance next weekend at the first-ever NagaWorld Cambodia Bike Fest, set to take place in Phnom Penh from July 6 to 8. The festival, whose highlights will include live music concerts, raffles and special dinners, marks the first collaboration between NagaWorld and the Kingdom’s Ministry of Tourism – a partnership launched with the goal of increasing foreign tourism to Cambodia. A motorcycle exhibit will be open to the public from 10am until late at night each day. Bike enthusiasts will be able to admire the big bike showcase, as well as accessories and apparel from popular brands such as Harley-Davidson, Ducati, Yamaha, Suzuki, BMW and Kawasaki. The last day of the festival will include tattoo artists, fire dancers, a fashion show, a custom bike contest, a cultural dance show and a charity campaign focusing on road safety in Phnom Penh. Also on that day, international riders from the Iron Butt Association, a world-wide organisation of big-bike enthusiasts, will arrive in the capital after attempting to set a Guinness World Record by riding about 2,500 kilometres non-stop from Johor Bahru, in Malaysia, to Phnom Penh within 36 hours. The ride is set to be one of the biggest in the region. Ho Saron, Under-Secretary of State of the Ministry of Tourism, said he expected approximately 60,000 people to attend Cambodia Bike Fest 2012, including around 400 to 500 international bikers from Malaysia, Thailand, Brunei and Singapore. NagaWorld has spent US$300,000 in organising the event, according to Rajesh Kumar, vice-president of events, promotions and entertainment at NagaWorld. Kumar said admission to the festival and exhibit were free, but that bikers who wanted to join the show and display their own bikes must register ahead of time and purchase a festival package. A $30 package includes a VIP dinner, VIP access pass, Bike Festival and Iron Butt ride T-shirts, while a $25 package includes the dinner, pass and the Iron Butt T-shirt. Kumar said 149 Cambodian and 350 international bikers had already registered.
Khmer New Year

They all had promised to cut the head of the person who failed the exam “THORM BAL” have no way to find the solution, he felled very hopeless, fortunately, there were two eagles which had spoken about these questions to make “THORM BAL” could find the way to settle the problems. The time of gambling arrived “THORM BAL ” had spoken that:

1. In the morning, the happiness is on the face that is why all people have to wash their face.

2. In the afternoon, the happiness is on the breath to make the people take water to wash the breath.

3. In the evening, the happiness is on the foot to make the people wash their food in the evening.

The result had broken out “KABEL MORHAPROHM” had to cut his head to give to the oldest had take it go around PRAS SOMERU mountain about 60 minutes after they all bring it to put in the center of KUHA KUNTH MALAY of KAILA mountain. In the end of the year the 7 females angles had changed their turn to take the head and go around the mountain every year till the present. This is the reason to cause “SANG KRAN” or changing the old year into the New Year.

Cambodian people are playing the Chaul Choung Game

Some people have believed that for a period of one year the people always face the problems like diseases or serious obstacles to make them unhappy. When the one of the year they all had celebrated a great festival called “HAPPY NEW YEAR” and the people always prepare them-self, clean the house, and take food to offer the monks.

They wear new clothes and play popular games.

The festival usually is in 3 days period. The first day is  “MOHA SANGKRAN” the second day is “VORNBORTH” and the third day is  “THNGAI LIENG SAK”. For that time they start to change the old year when the angle comes to get the duties from the former angle were schedule clearly.


Since the period of Norkor Thom, the Khmer people used the Lunar calendar (The revolution of the moon), that why they dated Mekseh (name of the first lunar month, from mid-November to mid-December) as the Khmer New Year’s month, and is the first month of the year. And Kadek (name of the last Lunar month) is the second one.

After that, they turned to use the Solar calendar (The revolution of the sun) as the most, and they dated the Chetr (5th Lunar month) is the New Year’s month, when the sun gets to the Mes Reasey. The Khmer New Year’s day is often celebrated on the 13th April (Chetr), but sometime it is celebrated on the 14th April, because of the Solar calendar. The almanac which is base on the Solar calendar is called “Simple arrival or Sangkran Thormada.

And the almanac which is based on the Lunar calendar, because the Lunar calendar is relevant to the Buddha’s speeches.

Buddhist devotees pour water over the statueBuddhist devotees pour water over the statue of a revered Buddhist monk during the New Year Celebrations.

Beside, the Khmer New Year’s day that is base on the Lunar calendar isn’t regular, because we sometimes celebrate it in the night of the waxing moon (Khneut), or in the night of the waning moon. However, we usually celebrate it around one month.

It means that we don’t do it before 4th Keut of Khe Pisak (name of the Solar day) of Khe Chetr and not after 4th Keut of Khe Pisak (name of the 6th Lunar month), so that some of the Khmer people celebrate their New Year’s day in Khe Chetr, such as the documents written by Mr. Chio-Takran, Khmer people celebrate this celebration with playing the hand-scarf-throwing game and they gather the statues of Buddha from everywhere to bath. In the other hand, the inscription in stone at Preah Khan is also stated this.

Talking about there celebrations in this New Year’s Day. The Khmer people celebrate them traditionally as below.

A few days before the Khmer New Year’s day, they prepared some food, clean their house, bought some news and so on. When the New Year’s Day comes, they prepare something such as 5 candles, 5 incenses, a pair of 5 Baysey, a pair of Baysey Baklam, a pair of Slathor (a ceremonial ornament made with a banana tree trunk bake), a tray of cigarettes, some flowers and some fruits to sacrifice to the new heaven. When every is ready, they sit together near that place and light the candles to pray for happiness from the new heaven and start to pray before breaking each other. On the other hand, we have different celebrations during these 3 days of New Year’s Day.

On the first day, they take some food to offer the monks at the monastery in the evening, they gather the sand to build up a sandal mountain around the pagoda or around the bany tree in the early evening, and they some drink to the monks and invite them to bany.

On the second day, children give some new clothes and money to their parents and grandparents. They also give some gift to their maids and poor people. In the evening, they go to build up the sandal mountain and start to bany that they consider it a Cholamony Chedey and ask the monks to bony and offer them the food to dedicate this sin to the spirit of the ancestor.

In the morning of the third day, they also invite the monks to bany for the sandal mountain. And in the evening, they bath the monks and statue of Buddha. During this third day, the people also play some traditional games such as the hand-scarf-throwing game, they kick the nuts game, the tug of war game, trot dancing (Battambang, Siem Reap). They also dance some traditional dancing such as Rorm Vong, Rorm Khbach…. etc.

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