My friends and I will be travelling in Cambodia for 2 weeks towards the beginning of December. We're all 19 so we'd like a mix of everything not only the backpackers scene. I've found on this amazing website a suggested itinerary but what I'm really after are suggestions of how long to spend in places or maybe some are just day trips? I would really appreciate some advice on how long to spend in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and suggested places like Battambang, Sihanoukville, Kep, Kompong Cham and Kratie (or feel free to tell me whether some are not necessary)
#1 scahn has been a member since 10/6/2010. Posts: 10
since you only have 2 weeks it's gonna be short but just enough for cambodia.
Phnom Penh: 4 days(toulsleng museum, killing fields, russian markets, ... ) as it's a really big city you need to take your time to go around and do the stuff you wanna do.
Siem reap 3 days (1 day at the temple is enough), 1 day at the lake : this is a really beautifull place to do a boat trip and 1 day of sightseeing in Siem reap).
battambang : no idea.
Sihanoukville : 2 days of chilling probably, maybe a boat trip
Kampot , maybe skip from Sihanoukville to Kampot for a day as well.
Kratie : 1 day
that's about it for the trip as you need to include busrides as wel you're almost at 2 weeks then.
busses: phnom penh - kratie : 5h
phnom penh - siem reap : 5h
phnom penh - sihanoukville : 3-4 h
phnom penh - stung treng : 8-10h
I personally don't think you can do all of these places in 2 weeks.
You will need 2-3 days in both Battambang and Kampot. Both are great places with a lot less tourists than the other destinations.
Also, unless you want to see all of the gruesome Khmer Rouge sites you can easily see Phenom Pehn in 2 days.
If you will be hitting other beach destinations in SE Asia than I would skip Sihanoukville.
#3 yogakhaolak has been a member since 1/4/2010. Posts: 45
Thank you so much for the advice! I only mentioned all the other places (not Siem Reap and Luang Prabang) because on travelfish it's got a suggested 2 week itinerary with those places, just no suggested time to spend there.
We'll actually be volunteering in a school near Siem Reap for 5 days. However, volunteering will only start in the afternoon so do you think if we're only volunteering from say 2pm-5pm we'll have enough time to see Siem Reap over those 5 days? Or do you suggest we stay for a day or two longer, so we have some extra full days to see things we may not have yet?
What's there to see in Battambang and Kampot? Are they similar places?
Could Sihanoukville be a day trip out of Phneom Penh? Or do you think maybe it's too far for just a day trip? Perhaps one night is sufficient? (after all we will be spending 10 days in Koh Phangan)
Really appreciate all your help!!
#5 scahn has been a member since 10/6/2010. Posts: 10
I didn't care for Phnomn Penh much; partly, I think, because there were a lot of very seedy characters around (western ones, that is) and partly because both my wife & I went down with food poisoning less than 24 hours after arrival. First and only time we had this in 4 months of travelling in the region. The Killing Fields museums are a must, of course, though are harrowing, to say the least, but its important you go. But I agree that much more than 2 nights in the city seems excessive.
Seam Riep, however, we loved. It is true there are A LOT of tourists there, but we really liked it. There is a lot to do both in and around the town. We spent 5 nights there and had a 3 day pass for the Angkor temples. We weren't sure whether scrabbling around temples was our thing, but we absolutely loved it. Getting up at dawn to beat the crowds to some lovely places to watch sunrise, talking with the kids who sell postcards or books, travelling by tuk tuk through the countryside, seeing temples away from the main ones, going to the Landmine museum, visiting an orphanage. We actually ran out of time there and could happily have stayed longer.
The town itself was a surprise, also. Didn't expect much, but it has some very nice colonial architecture, some very good restaurants (all those tourists) and bars and a very good market in town.
I can't comment on anywhere else in Cambodia, I'm afraid, as we didn't go.
What your opinions on spending 1 full day (2 nights) in Sihanoukville, Kampot and Battambang in order to see it all and get it all in or would you rather suggest we get rid of one and spend more time in another? Or alternatively, is there a more interesting place to see in stead of one of those? I hope I'm making sense! Basically, we don't have THAT much time but I feel as though we should see as much as possible. Keeping in mind we're 19 yr olds and pretty much want a taste of everything!
#8 scahn has been a member since 10/6/2010. Posts: 10
Really wouldn't bother with Sihanoukville considering you say you're going to Koh Phangan as well. Beaches arnt great and there just seems to be an underlying feeling of seediness to the whole place. Just think there are better places to see in Cambodia, unless you're desperate for a beach
I ended up spending a large portion of my time in Sihanouk ville because of the party and backpacker scene. If you are young and into that kind of stuff, then I would advice you to allocate more time to Sihanouk ville.
I only did two days in Siem reap (one for the temple, one for the sightseeing), two in Phnom Penh and then a week in Sihanouk ville for snorkeling, visiting the islands, parties etc
I know from my holidays you could never do all of these places in 2 weeks and really enjoy your trip.
You will need 3 days in both Battambang and Kampot. Both are exciting places with few tourists compared to the other destinations.
Also, if you want to see all of the Khmer Rouge sites you can easily see Phnom Penh in 5 days.
If you will be enjoying beach destinations in SE Asia than I would certainly go to Sihanoukville. Eidoos77.