Go: Phnom Tamao Wildlife Sanctuary

It's taken me a long time to get around to visiting Phnom Tamao.  For a long time I wasn't sure whether I even wanted to go as I've had some bad experiences visiting zoos in Asia (visiting Phuket Zoo was one of the most depressing experiences I've had).  But I have also heard many good things about the wildlife centre, so, finally last weekend The Boy and I went out to take a look.

Phnom Tamao is 44 km south of Phnom Penh following National Road 2, we got slightly lost and so travelled a bit further (albeit through a very picturesque bit of Cambodian countryside near 'the other' Siem Reap).

A word of warning, I may have gotten slightly carried away with the photos here...sorry!

Phnom Tamao is an interesting zoo.  We began our visit in a walk-through exhibit where deer and monkeys roam free among some smaller enclosures.  There are children selling food to feed the animals, and, as a result, most of the animals are very friendly to visitors.  Although there was one angry bird (a word of caution, take your photo from a distance!)

Phnom Tamao is different from any other zoo or wildlife parks I've ever visited, in that it's a  'drive-through' zoo.   Basically you drive your car or moto from exhibit to exhibit.

The zoo not very well sign-posted, with directions to only the 'big name' exhibits.  Many enclosures have no lables or information at all.  This may annoy some, but for me it adds to the charm.  We enjoyed wandering down lanes and peering into enclosures never sure what we might spy.

I have to be honest the main reason I came to Phnom Tamao was these guys.  (In fact it was this video that really got me motivated to visit Phnom Tamao)

(I love the fact that the bears have hammocks!)

Our last stop was the elephants.  If you're visiting these guys make sure you stand back, we saw the elephants spray a few people!

Overall I was quite impressed with Phnom Tamao.  It's not as well marked and sign-posted as many other zoos and some of the exhibits are basic.  However, most of the animals appeared contented and reasonably well cared for.  

Entry to the zoo will cost you $5 per person.  We spent about 3 hours there but could have spent longer.  Alternatively there are a couple of tours you can do to Phnom Tamao that include extra tours and activities (check out or

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