Photo: Gem shopping in Pailin.


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As the number of visitors to Cambodia grows, it’s good to know that there are still plenty of places that are not just off the beaten track, but scarcely on the same map, and Pailin is one of them. Home of mountains, waterfalls, coffee and pepper plantations, and a real frontier feeling, this remote, under-serviced area is a rich, if quiet, reward for the adventurous, especially trekking and cycling fans.

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Keep reading to learn more about Pailin!

The smallest Cambodian province only formally came into existence by royal decree in 2008 before which it had been a separate municipality carved out of the side of Battambang in 1996 after Khmer Rouge leader Ieng Sary surrendered to the Cambodian government. In the 1970s Pailin was one of the first areas targeted by the Khmer Rouge who were drawn there by its rich mineral and gem deposits. They never really left, and a significant proportion of the population there are Khmer Rouge children. The gems though are now ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 800 words.)

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What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Pailin.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda
 Read up on where to eat on Pailin.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Pailin.
 Read up on how to get to Pailin, or book your transport online with BookMeBus.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Pailin? Please read this.
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