Deep in the South Cardamom Mountains in Cambodia you can jump on the back of a motorbike with an armed ranger and help protect the rainforest and local wildlife. The initiative is a partnership between luxury tented camp experience Shinta Mani Wild and not-for-profit conservation organisation Wildlife Alliance. The camp was built with the sole purpose of protecting the rainforest, and a stay here means you can head out with rangers daily – but it’s not for the faint hearted, they carry AK-47 rifles and large knives, and there’s a very real chance you’ll come across poachers.
Shinta Mani Wild has committed a lifetime of financial assistance to the cause and funds eight rangers, equating to the protection of 2,000 hectares of forest and 500 animals each year. Stay in one of 15 luxury tents perched above a cascading river with king-size beds, living areas and claw-foot verandah baths.
Fly to Phnom Pehn Airport, and from there it is a four-hour drive to Shinta Mani Wild. Helicopter arrival can also be arranged from the airport.
US$950 per person per night (based on twin or double occupancy), plus applicable service charge and government taxes.
When riding on the back of a motorbike in the rainforest, there’s a chance you may encounter poachers or illegal loggers. If it’s considered too unsafe, however, guests are returned to the camp.