Stoeung Mean Chey & Phnom Penh: 7 Sep 2003


Unlikely Tourist Attraction

Ask a typical resident of Phnom Penh where the garbage trucks go to dump their load and it is likely that he/she doesn't know the answer. While exploring Tompun Lake in the southwestern corner of Phnom Penh, I drove right into the city dump to find a photographic goldmine there.


Gold Mine

An unlikely place to have such a crowd. Loads of people, young and old were going through the garbage like looking for gold in a gold rush. Once a garbage truck empties, loads of people will jump upon the newly dumped goodies fighting for their loot.


Food Glorious Food

Where there are people, there will be food for sale. It is amazing to see food vendors in the middle of a rubbish dump, with flies all about and a stench that can wake the dead.


Very Appetizing

Imagine eating a meal here. Very amppetizing indeed.



The crowds of people in the dump are looking for recyclable items in the trash. This is really money from trash as they sieve through the garbage for plastics, tin and aluminum cans, old batteries, metal scrapes. Oddly, glass has no value here. The salvaged items are then weighed by merchants who pay cash for them.


Big Bags

The recycled trash is then compressed and packed into bags like those above to become useful items again.


Streets of Phnom Penh

Back in the city of Phnom Penh. Chaos is the norm. With vehicles going in all directions find a space to squeeze through the narrow streets. Makeshift stalls with colourful umbrellas as shelter makes a narrow street narrower and livelier.


Land of Motorcycles

A land of motorcycles,a cheap means of personal transport for the common. Motorcycle parking gives interesting patterns.



Looking like a scene from the Genocide Museum, these chopped out feet are found in the Orussey Market. A modern multistorey market that has everything from live chickens to luxury toiletries, machine spare parts to brooms.


Children's Toys ?

No child's play, these are brand new ice shaving machines on sale. Their brightly coloured appearance with swan motifs, turning wheels and knobs make them look like toys for kids.



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