Just planning a trip through SEA and originally I was thinking I would skip over Cambodia but from what I have read here it is worth seeing and I plan on going Vietnam to Thailand so might as well add 10-14 days or so and do it by land.
Only real plans were to check out Phnom Penh, see the killing fields etc, then up to Angkor Wat and check out the temples for a few days before heading into Thailand.
Anything else along the way I should see? How long would you recommend to make this trip comfortable(10-14 days good)? Any recommended places to stay etc?
You can stay as long as you want, I stayed 2 x 2 weeks in Saigon, 1,5 months in Phnom Penh, so it's up to you. Don't miss Cambodia, it's really fantastic and these countries are different from each other. I would just go to Cambodia by land from Saigon, and take and Air Asia flight to Bangkok from Phnom Penh. There are numerous guest houses along the way, just look around a bit and you'll find something you like depending on how much you're willing to spend. (ie. 12 dollars or 15 or 18)
#2 forum2233 has been a member since 13/10/2012. Posts: 3
Great that you have the time to travel at a reasonable pace and not rush through three countries in a week.
That considered, I would suggest catching a boat from Vietnam (you can get a package in HCMC) to PP. It's an excellent slow-paced way to be introduced to Cambodia.
A few days in PP are worthwhile - there's plenty of interesting things to see aside from the Killing Fields and S21 museum. The Olympic Stadium exercise classes, a sunset boat trip, Wat Phnom, Central Market ...
It's easy to travel by bus from PP to Siem Reap, and I would advise at least four or five days, as you have the time.
Other than that, somewhere like Kampot , Battambang or Kompong Cham will give you a feel for Cambodian life by the river and away from the big cities. A motorbike tour around KC or Kampot is a great insight into country living and always has me grinning from ear to ear!
Try this place.You won't see any tourists and it's beautiful. It's called Ampe Phnom and is just an hour south on Highway 4. Just before Kampong Speu market.
Koh Kong: beautiful estuary, beaches and forest walks.
and especially :
This is the most spectacular place in Cambodia.A mountain with miles and miles of trails and a beautiful lake at the top.
Kampot is great for drinking lattes
#4 sayadian has been a member since 15/1/2008. Posts: 1,557
Two photos to tempt you to this beautiful place.
#5 sayadian has been a member since 15/1/2008. Posts: 1,557
don't know what you mean but sure it's cheek in tongue.
I just get surprised on here that 'the usual suspects' are mentioned over and over again by people who say they know Cambodia. You know what I mean.Battambang, Kampot etc etc.
There is a lot better out there believe me.
I challenge you to look at the photos of Kirirom. It's spectacular but never mentioned. I'd sure rather spend a couple of nights there than reading books and drinking latte on the front at Kampot.You see the pine trees-this is Cambodia!
great day out, swim, take beautiful walks, see the local Killing Fields, attractive Pagoda with fortune tellers.Lots of monkeys.
Have a look at the view from the top-unbelievably beautiful.
take a trip up the river, live on a houseboat.Trek through some of the most beautiful forest in Cambodia.
I get the impression that most of the stuff written by writers on here prove they have not been very far, prove me wrong by writing about a few other places than Kampot and Battambang.
All these places I've rarely seen a tourist. I'm just amazed.
Maybe I'll get into the North next. Stung Treng, a stopover point for Laos but you could spend a week here it's so beautiful.
#7 sayadian has been a member since 15/1/2008. Posts: 1,557
Thanks for some ideas sayadian.
My plans changed and I am actually going to be heading into Cambodia from Isaan Thailand. My rough plans now are to go through border crossing by Anlong Veng, skip over to Preah Vihear then down to Angkor Wat for a few days. Then take either the boat or bus down to Phnom Penh, spend a couple days in the area there and then spend a few days checking out that area you are recommending as I work my way to Kampot . From Kampot I will work my way into Vietnam down to Saigon via the Mekong Delta.
I think that will give me a good taste of Cambodia and should take just under 2 weeks. My schedule will be flexible as well so if I find a place I really like I can stay there a few extra days as well.
Which border crossing are you going to use coming from Vietnam into Cambodia? If you're in Ratanakiri you should spend some time in the highlander villages along the Sesan River or outside of Ban Lung. Check out the indigenous villages, and the jungles, if you're up for it -that's my 2 cents.
I don't think he's going that way but Banlung is worth a visit. Volcanic crater lake is beautiful. You need 4*4 to get out to see the villages.
Most of the hotels charge large commission for the trip so go and see the drivers personally at the market if you go. Much cheaper.
#10 sayadian has been a member since 15/1/2008. Posts: 1,557
If you get the chance visit Battambang then take a ride on the Bamboo train. It's an experience not to be missed! You can find out more about the Bamboo trainon this blog post. Hope my suggestion helps...http://www.dontworryjusttravel.com/index.php/en/asiapacific/cambodia/61-cambodia-top-5.html