Located in the eastern region of Cambodia, with the capital name of Sen Monorom, Mondulkiri is the most sparsely populated province in the country despite covering the largest land area. It is well known for its thickly forested hills with a huge variety of flora and fauna; powerful and beautiful gigantic waterfalls; and the lush green rolling hills of the western side, which together contribute to the ecotourism in Mondulkiri.
Minorities/Hill Tribes of Mondulkiri
Approximately 80 percent of the Mondulkiri’s population is made up of ten tribal minorities, with the majority being Phnong. The remaining 20 percent includes Khmer, Chinese and Muslim Cham. The population primarily lives off the land by planting rice, fruit trees and a variety of vegetables. The remaining population grows strawberries, coffee, rubber and cashew nuts. Although more and more houses are built in “Khmer style”, visitors may still find the traditional Phnong houses. Inside the houses, visitors may find big jars (which are said to be more than a thousand years old) and traditional gongs. There are a variety of gongs used for different occasions. Jars and gongs are amongst the most valuable possessions of indigenous communities in terms of tradition, spiritual and material. During the times of Pol Pot, those objects were buried in hidden places in the jungle and some remained hidden until this day.