This is the page dedicated to provide latest updates travel guide to Cambodia. You can find everything you wanted to know about Cambodia. If there’s anything you want to ask, feel free to drop a comment at the bottom of this page.
Prepare Your Trip
Important things you need to know in advance such as:
Before You Go
On this page, we will try to give you the information as much as we can to get yourself be prepared for your first trip to Cambodia.
First of all, to enter the country, you need a Visa. You can apply e-Visa online or you can apply it on your arrival. I would suggest that you apply for the Visa in advance. There’s a change has been made from the government to make sure the e-Visa application go smoothly.
Here are the few articles I wrote on the topic:
You might want to have an idea how you are going to organize your trip. I collected some of the best travel guides on Cambodia but some of them might be out of date. I keep looking for the new edition from time to time.
However, I am sure those books will give you an idea about best places to go. Pick up one of these books to get started: Top 10: Best Cambodia Travel Guide Books
Learn about the country
Cambodia had a glory time where the country reined almost the entire southeast Asia. Cambodia also had a very dark past, genocide, and war.
The only way to learn more about the country is to watch the movies and read books. Here are the best movies and fictions books about Cambodia:
Cambodian people used USA dollar everywhere. You don’t have to worry about getting local currency “riel”. There are a lot of ATM machines at the airport and in the city. You can withdraw your money almost anywhere. But bear in mind, there’s a fee for this. But as you travel anywhere, you have to pay the ATM fee.
You can pay by credit card or Visa in most of the restaurants in Phnom Penh but as a backup, you should keep some cash in your pocket, in case the post machine doesn’t work.
Most of the GSM providers offer Travel SIM card for free. It is easy and convenient to get a local SIM card during your travel. You can make the call and use the Internet in most of the area. When you arrive at the airport, you will find counters of telephone providers who offer travel SIM with a very reasonable price. You can choose the vadility for 1 week or 1 month. It’s up to how long you will stay in the country.
When to visit
There are two things that people are trying to avoid when they come to Cambodia: Hot or Raining. We have two seasons: Dry season and raining Season. The raining season starts from May to October and dry season takes the rest of the year. April is the hottest month (sometimes, it can go up to 38-40 degrees Celsius). The rains start to fall often from July to September. Those are not heavy and could take normally a half day or night expect there is influence from typhoon or storm from other countries.
If you wish to come to Cambodia for its good weather, consider planning your trip from November to February. During this period, there’s no more rain and the temperature starts to cold down. This is the perfect time for those who hate the heat or rain.
Cambodia is still in progress to improve public transportation. I would not recommend you to rent a car or a motorbike and drive by yourself.
Traffic in Cambodia is terribly bad. It is sad to say but people don’t respect the traffic lights. They can come to you from anywhere on the road.
I would recommend you to pick up any of recommended transportation here:
There is Taxi available to bring you from any airport to the town. The cost will be set as a fixed price which is varied by the airport.
In general, you would pay from $12 to $15 for a Taxi to get you from the airport to anywhere in town.
Those are the Airport Taxi community that well registered. They can take the Taxi straight away at the arrival area.
If you want to save money, you can try to request a pick up via these apps:
Phnom Penh city bus started their services to the public in 2014. There’s a bus station in front of the Phnom Penh International Airport. It will take you to town for less than $0.5.
The bus is popular transport if you want to move around from the capital to the provinces. The road in Cambodia is very busy. The people and animal cross the road without precaution.
It depends on how good the driver is to avoid the accident. So far Giant Ibis is the most recommend bus provider.
I also like to recommend the bus booking ticket: CamboTicket
A line of the train between Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville was opened for public in April 2016. It is a good opportunity to travel safe and enjoy the landscape of Cambodia countryside.
Visit their website for detail information and schedule: Royal Railways
In case an emergency or you want to go and explore Cambodia from the sky, there is a few helicopters provider in Cambodia.
Check out Helistar Cambodia.
Siem Reap Travel Guide
People go to visit Siem Reap because it is where the Angkor Wat complex located. It is the most visited city in Cambodia.
There are a lot of temples to discover. Each of them has their own story. You would need to speed a week or so if you want to visit all the temples. Typically, a 3 days stay would be enough if you want to visit the most famous temples.
Siem Reap is well prepared for welcome the tourists. They got many options for accommodation, restaurant, food.
Top things to do in Siem Reap
There are a lot of interesting things to do in Siem Reap. You can stay at your comfortable hotel, enjoy the beer or wine and read a few good books at the pool. You will not be disturbed.
But there are also a few things you can’t miss when you visit Siem Reap, below are my recommendation:
1. Visit Angkor Wat
Visit the temples is always the most priority one when you visit Siem Reap.
All those temples in the complex area were built since the 12th century.
People, after visiting the temples, always curious how those temples were built. Some said they were built by God. Some said they were built by the human.
It depends on what you believe.
2. Phare – Cambodian Circus Show
After visiting the temples, there is one particular show that people always recommend and you can’t miss it. It’s a circus run and performed by young talanted Cambodians. The show is suitable for all ages including kids.
You can book your ticket at your hotel reception or you can book it online with GetYourGuide.com
After a long day of visiting temples, all you want to do is relax. The spa is one of the right activities that will give you back the energy for the next morning.
There are a lot of good Spas in Siem Reap, even at the hotel you stay in. You can book it in advance with your hotel reception or you can go around the tourist area, they also propose a message with a cheaper price.
There are various options to choose: Car, Tuk Tuk, Motorcycle, or Bike. It depends on your preference. You can rent it the whole day with a fixed price.
Tuk Tuk is a good option. You can rent a Tuk Tuk for the whole with just $25 USD. To move around the city, for example, to go between your hotel and Pub street, you can download PassApp.
It is much cheaper than negotiate the price with traditional Tuk Tuk.
There are a lot of hotels in Siem Reap. A budget hostels can cost between $10-$20 USD per night. A luxury hotel can cost up to $200 USD per night. It really depends on your budget.
Check out our list of recommended hotels in Siem Reap.
You can eat at the hotel you stay but it will cost you higher than going out and eat outside. The most commune area to have nice food, with a lot of choices and cheap is Pub Street.
Phnom Penh Travel Guide
I moved to Phnom Penh when I was 15. My father asked me if I wanted to leave my hometown to pursue my study in the capital. I didn’t hesitate to say YES.
I am more than happy to introduce you the city that I’ve been living in for more than 20 years.
Phnom Penh is a developing city, a lot of new building constructions for business, restaurants, coffee shops etc. A lot of people started to move to the city because it is the place where they can find jobs and create new businesses.
The city is located very close to the Mekong river. Sisowath Quay is the tourist area where you can find a good and cheap place to stay and eat. It’s a very convenient location.
There are also a few interesting hotels and restaurants across the river, you just need to cross the bridge and discover them.
Top things to do in Phnom Penh
There are a lot of interesting things to do in Phnom Penh. You can go and relax in a nice hotel at the riverside. Or you can go shopping in the market. Or you can follow what people usually do to visit the genocide museum. I usually don’t recommend people to go there, unless this is what you really want to do.
Here are things I like to recommend:
1. Visit Royal Palace (Area)
Royal Palace would be a place you can’t miss during your visit to Phnom Penh. It’s a place where you can see the high class of Khmer architectures. There are 3 interesting places to visit when you arrive at the area.
The first one would be the Royal Palace itself, then the second one is the Silver Pagoda that located inside the Royal Palace.
After you finished visiting these 2 places, you can go and visit the National Museum that is located next to the Royal Palace.
2. Cruise at Mekong River
Spending an evening to see the sunset on a boat cruise down the Mekong river would give you an exceptional memory. There are many boats which you can rent for a few hours of a cruise with a very reasonable price. They can offer dinner included but the food would not be so good as you expected. However, it could be a good accompaniment to a beer or two.
3. Go shopping
You might find a cheap and good souvenir to bring home by visiting Phnom Penh local markets such as Phsar Thmey or Russian market (Toul Tum Poeun Market).
Phsar Thmey is located at city center. You can reach the market in just 5 or 10 minutes from your hotel.
Russian market is a very far from the center but you might find interesting stuff there.
Phnom Penh municipal started to encourage people taking the public bus to reduce traffic jam.
The fee is very cheap. You pay only 0.40 USD for a single ride. You need to have riel (Cambodian currency) to pay for the ticket. The sign of the bust stop is not very visible. To know the bus station near you, you can download Stops Near Me: Android – iOS.
PassApp: Android – iOS, This is the most popular App to call Tuk Tuk and Taxi in Cambodia. After downloading the App, you just ask for a pickup. Then wait for someone to come and pick you. They will track automatically your location. You will know how many minutes they will arrive. You can also cancel a pick up if you change your mind. It is cheap, safe, convenient and easy to use.
Phnom Penh offers good hotel options for you to select from based on your preference and budget. A budget hostels can cost between $10-$20 USD per night. A luxury hotel can cost up to $200 USD per night.
Check out our list of recommended best hotels in Phnom Penh.
There are a lot of interesting restaurants for tourists at Sisowath Quay, along the river. At a typical restaurant, a dish generally can cost you from $3-$5 USD.
I know a popular local restaurant where you can eat good food with cheaper price. It is called 126 The Noodle House Factory.
Koh Rong Travel Guide
Koh Rong is a name of Cambodia islands. There are two islands exactly. The first one called Koh Rong itself, and another one called Koh Rong Sanloem.
For backpackers, they prefer Koh Rong Sanloem because the hotel price is cheaper than Koh Rong. But both islands offer the same good beach and clear blue sea water.
To reach there, you need to go to Sihanoukville first. Then take the boat to the island.
Top things to do in Koh Rong
We all have the same purpose when we go to the beach: having a good relaxing time. You can swim, stay under the sun, have a few drinks or maybe read some books.
But there are also some interesting activities that you might want to consider:
1. Explore the island
Kong Rong has a very clear blue sea you might not yet see elsewhere. You can explore by yourself or book a day tour with Adventure Adam. They have different packages for you to choose from. You can choose to go a full day exploring the island with them or 3 hours of finishing.
They have western safety standard and years of experiences. They will make your stay more active and enjoyable.
2. Diving – See under sea world
Diving might be one of scaring things to do for some people. I myself never dive either. But if you are a kind of adventure guy, you can try the diving with Koh Rong Dive Center.
They are the professional divers that will provide you training and you will become a certified diver as well.
3. High Point Adventure
This is definitively not for everyone but if you are sportive and like to climb, jumping from one tree to another like monkeys, this is for you.
The service is offered by High Point Koh Rong Adventure park, built by professional climbers and always assure the safety of the customers. You will have a lot of fun for sure.
As it is an island, the boat is your only choice to move around. As I mentioned earlier, to reach Koh Rong, you need to go to Sihanoukville first, then you can take the speed boat from Sihanoukville to Koh Rong that would take about 40 minutes. This is the official duration. Please bear in mind, there’s a lot of chances the trip might take longer or you might be picked up a bit late.
This is because it’s a shared boat by many other tourists who will be picked up from different places and will be dropped off at the different part of the island, depending on the hotel they booked. You might be the one who will be picked up or dropped off first or you might be the last one. But don’t take it seriously, soon or later you will reach the destination.
Make sure you enjoy the journey!
I would recommend you book the smaller boat such as Buva Sea or Island Speed Boat Cambodia rather than a big boat like Speed Ferry Cambodia. But you need to know if you take a small boat, you might have more vibration by the wave of the sea. If you are comfortable with the wave, take the small one. If not, take the big one but you need to be aware of they will stop in many areas.
If you are on a budget or doing backpacking, you can afford any hotel at Koh Rong Sanloem. If you have enough budget, I would recommend Sok San Beach or The Royal Sand or if you want a luxury hotel, go for Song Saa Private Island.
All hotels and guest houses will offer food directly for your convenience. There’s no restaurant or market there. Just islands, jungle, hotels, sea and sun.
Enjoy your seafood there!