There are no golden sand beaches and shimmering suns, no hills and vast primitive forests, the capital of Phnom Penh is a noisy and crowded city with scars of peace in the past. Not a probable tourist city, but it is a great place for you to start exploring the Cambodian country. Referring Living Nomads for Phnom Penh self-sufficient travel experience and explore the land of the pagoda. Now, let’s discover the capital city of Cambodia through our Phnom Penh travel guide and Phnom Penh travel blog — The fullest guide for a budget trip to Phnom Penh of Cambodia with Living Nomads below.
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Phnom Penh travel blog: The cost of self-sufficient Phnom Penh trip
Cost of Moving
It is not hard to get to Phnom Penh. If you want to go by land, you can go to Pham Ngu Lao Street or Bui Vien Street (get from Ho Chi Minh City) and buy a bus ticket to get to Phnom Penh. The price of a ticket is about 9-10 dollars/ticket. You can go any hour of the day and only take 6 hours to go to the Cambodian capital. If you want to take a flight from Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh at a cost of 100-200 USD / ticket. However, if you want to save money when traveling self-sufficient Phnom Penh, the best way is to take the bus.
Many Phnom Penh’s tourist attractions are quite close together. You can walk up to just a few local trails, or if you want to be fast, you can use the tuk-tuk and … bargain. The price for these services is only 2-3usd / time/person.
Cost of stay
There are a variety of rooms for you to choose in Phnom Penh. Dorm rooms can be found in the West Sisowath Quay area and near the monument for prices ranging from 2-5usd. There are many other accommodation services such as homestay, hotel for less than 10usd with good quality.
Cost of eating
Cuisine in Phnom Penh is generally quite cheap and quite similar to Vietnamese cuisine. But most notably in Cambodia are insect dishes: puppies, spiders, scorpions, crickets … They look horrible but in fact, they contain very high nutrient content. You can eat at Phnom Penh at about 10 dollars per day.
Phnom Penh travel guide on a budget: Some tips on how to save cost of a self-sufficient trip to Phnom Penh
Moving by land
Instead of moving by airplane, experience for a self-sufficient Phnom Penh according to the “delicious – healthy – cheap” you should choose to go by road. Departure from District 1 center, it takes about 15 hours to move. You will arrive in Phnom Penh with only from 9 to 10 dollars.
Another route to savings and more fun that many visitors are choosing is riding a motorbike. Move through Moc Bai (Tay Ninh) border gate to get to Phnom Penh. All things you need to prepare are a good car, license, passport and gas money. Moving by motorbike, you do not have to rent a car when you arrive and you will not be bent on time.
Enjoy street food
Indeed, the cost of eating when traveling Phnom Penh is relatively cheap in Southeast Asia. The cost for a portion of just 2 – 3 dollars is enough. You can enjoy many famous dishes such as Nam Vang noodle soup, fried noodles, chrouk (grilled pork rice with thinly sliced cucumber), sandwiches (with papaya yarn). There really is not any advice for money saving tips in the way of eating when you visit here. Grilled skewers and fried insects are also one of the things you must try when visiting Phnom Penh.
Cost of drinking
Phnom Penh’s self-sufficient tourist experience shows that the cost of drinking in Phnom Penh is a bit more expensive. Every drink is usually a dollar, but alcoholic beverages sometimes cost about 3-4 dollars. Therefore, when going to the bar you should carefully consider avoiding spending too much.
Phnom Penh travel guide: Experiences you should not miss in Phnom Penh — Best places to visit and top things to do
Wat Phnom is one of the oldest temples in Phnom Penh. It is also considered the most sacred temple in Cambodia. Visiting this temple you can see the whole city of Phnom Penh because this is the highest point in the city. You can also learn about the history of the city and the legendary legends of Cambodia.
The monument and square are located at the intersection of Phnom Penh’s two largest roads, Sihanouk and Norodom. The monument is a traditional stupa, mimicking the architecture of Angkor Wat temple and other famous historical buildings of Cambodia.
Royal Palace of Cambodia
This is one of the symbols of the royal Cambodian. This is also the place where the king lived and worked and where ceremonies were held. It is a complex of primitive white and gold buildings, flower gardens and the famous Silver Pagoda. Today, you can come here to admire the magnificent, luxuriant and rich architecture of Phnom Penh.
It is one of the places that attract visitors to take pictures. Located near the palace, you can visit this place after visiting the palace. In addition, the most feature of this area is a very friendly and sociable
Silver Pagoda (original name: Wat Preah Morakat) is the most prominent temple in the Royal Palace of Cambodia. The pagoda is called the Silver Pagoda (also known as the Golden Pagoda-Silver Pagoda) by the legend of 5329 pieces of silver on the floor, each piece is handmade and has an accurate weight of 1.125 g. In addition, the temple also has thousands of statues of gold, silver, copper are carved finely.
Here in the past was the Khmer Rouge massacre many Cambodians. With killing trees, trees or paths with signboards “Do not step on the bones,” this place can give you a direct view of the brutal history of the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia, a regime that has caused one of the most devastating massacres of the human.
National Museum of Cambodia
This is the home to the archaeological, religious and artistic of the Khmer. You can see more than half a million specimens from the 4th to the 13th century. All show the wealth of culture of the ancient Khmer kingdom.
Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum
The heaviness in this place is largely attributed to the atmosphere of a dense atmosphere, S-21. At this place, you can experience space both in present and past. On the other side is the museum denounces the crimes of the Khmer Rouge. The last one is a notorious prison located in the capital. With its electric beds, stifling cells, walls with dry blood splotches, and the 10 pieces of advice S-21s, this place is a haunting place even if you visit it in the morning.
Markets in Phnom Penh
Go away from the sites filled with war memorabilia of Phnom Penh, you can catch tuk-tuk, visit and enjoy food at the markets here. From familiar dishes such as rice noodles, you can find very special and strange dishes of Cambodia such as fish sauce, fried insects, jelly wine … for only 5-8usd.
When eating full, do not forget to take a stroll around the market to buy souvenirs for your trip. You can find items made of silk, silver, and handbags … diverse with a variety of materials, designs, and prices.
Explore the nightlife
If you’ve been to Phnom Penh many years ago, you’ll probably notice a big change here. A few years ago, there was not much activity at night, people came home early and the visitors did not have much fun at night. As the second Bangkok of Indochina, Phnom Penh today has become a true nightlife hub.
Situated along the bank of the Mekong River, Sisowath Harbor is particularly beautiful at dawn. It is considered as the ideal to view sunrise of Phnom Penh. At night, you will feel the exciting atmosphere, along with restaurants, eateries, … Especially there is a night market for you to buy souvenirs.
It is one of the ideal destinations for anyone who loves shopping. In addition to souvenirs and food, you can come and try the best coffee in Cambodia.
Phnom Penh may not have magnificent temples like Angkor Wat, but it does not mean that there are no places to visit. Come here one time and experience the space that blends the modernity of a thriving urban with the hues of the past.
Are you finding more top things to do in Phnom Penh: Tours, activities, attractions and other things? Let’s check it out at here.