The amazing 3,300ft-long bamboo bridge containing 50,000 sticks that is taken down and REBUILT every year

  • The crossing links Kampong Cham with Koh Paen across the Mekong River – and is built during the dry season
  • Just before the dry season ends locals dismantle the bridge and store all of the bamboo before the river floods
  • The building and dismantling of the bridge takes place annually and attracts thousands of visitors to the area
  • But a concrete bridge has been built nearby and there are fears the bamboo bridge tradition will die out

This is the incredible 3,300 foot bamboo bridge in Cambodia that is taken down and rebuilt every single year.

The crossing contains 50,000 sticks of bamboo and is built during the dry season to link the town of Kampong Cham with 1,000 families on Koh Paen island across the Mekong River.

However, just before the rainy season (May to November), locals dismantle the bridge and store all of the bamboo before the river floods.

The incredible 3,300ft bamboo bridge in Cambodia that is taken down and rebuilt every single year using 50,000 sticks of bamboo 

The amazing bridge links the town of Kampong Cham with 1,000 families on Koh Paen across the Mekong River

The building of the bamboo bridge has taken place annually for decades and was only missed during the civil war

The constant building and dismantling of the bamboo bridge has taken place annually for decades and was only missed several times during the civil war in Cambodia.

And not only does it take pedestrians across the river, the bridge is strong enough to accommodate bicycles, motorbikes, cars and trucks.


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Locals wanting to cross the bridge are charged 100 riel, which is only a few cents or one penny in sterling.

Foreign tourists are charged up to 40 times more.

Not only does it take pedestrians across the river, the bridge is normally strong enough to accommodate bicycles, motorbikes, cars and trucks

Just before the rainy season, locals dismantle the bridge and store all of the bamboo before the river becomes flooded

Once the dry season comes to an end, the bridge must be dismantled because the currents of the Mekong are too strong for the crossing to survive

Once the dry season comes to an end, the bridge must be dismantled and stored as the strong currents of the Mekong are too strong for the crossing to survive.

When the bridge isn’t up, a ferry then takes people across the river.

However, it is unclear for how much longer the tradition of building and dismantling the bridge will continue.

Last year, a permanent concrete bridge was built by the Cambodian government further up stream, leading to fears the bamboo crossing would not return.

The first part of a narrower bamboo bridge being constructed in Cambodia that will only take pedestrians and cyclists 

Last year, a permanent concrete bridge was built by the Cambodian government further up stream, leading to fears the bamboo crossing would not return

One traveller who visited Kampong Cham in April confirmed that the bridge was still there and still going strong – but is narrower than before.

Giles W wrote on Tripadvisor last week: ‘The bridge is rather less substantial than before, now carrying foot traffic only (well, I suspect they let motos across as well, but I didn’t see that – maybe it’s banned).’ 

Another Tripadvisor user, ‘aroundthenextcorner4’, explained that it costs $1 US to cross and that it costs a further $1 to walk a bicycle across.

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