‘Spirit Houses’ Pich Nil Mountain Pass

Primary School Sianoukville

Primary School visit

Early morning start, our first stop is a visit  to a primary school. The classroom for the younger children is nicely decorated, the youngsters in the next grade using slates and chalk (which is not a bad thing, think of the paper they save?) The teacher had the young children sing a song for us; so lovely to listen to the sweet young voices of the primary school children.


Primary School – Pupils and teacher ready to sing for us.

The children dressed in clean white shirts,  black pants or skirts, all looked very smart. Our tour group opted to give donation towards a water fountain and wash basin for the primary school. Most of the class rooms we looked into were pretty drab and in need of a fresh coat of paint. It was quite a large primary school, grounds really muddy after heavy rain, no pathways.


Spirit Houses and Shrines at Pich Nil Mountain Pass

Spirit Houses Pich Nil mountain pass

A point of interest along the highway, dozens of spirit houses at the crest of the Pich Nil mountain pass on National Route #4. Many of the spirit houses or shrines maintained for Ya-Mao, the deity who oversees the southern coastal region of Cambodia.


Yao-Mao (black Lady) Spirit houses at Pich Nil Mountain Pass

Ya-Mao means ‘Black Lady’.

Travelers, especially truck and taxi drivers on highway route #4 make offerings of bananas and incense, and sometimes a little money, with their prayers to Ya-Mao for safe travel. Ya-Mao means ‘Black Lady’.


Other Deities Spirit houses at Pich Nil Mountain Pass

Spirit houses at Pich Nil Mountain Pass

Spirit houses at Pich Nil Mountain Pass

There are many legends that have grown up over the years about Ya-Mao,who was the wife of a village chief in the area. Like the legends, the shrines and spirit houses are very interesting and colorful.

Lone Pilgrim Pich Nil Mountain Pass

Lone Pilgrim Pich Nil Mountain Pass

Pich Nil is also a convenient toilet stop, and has a number of clean toilets available. Bottled water, fruit and snacks may also be purchased. 

Highway Route #4 ,the 230km highway from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville is in excellent condition, as always however, watch out for the other driver.


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