This is not a standard city guide you can find anywhere else. GoWonder travellers share their favourite spots from their hometown to create the most authentic guide. Discover the best things to do in the world’s greatest cities.
Wonderer Elise will be your local guide today to make the best out of your visit to Battambang, the capital city of Battambang province in northwestern Cambodia! For a full experience, make your plans for two days in the area.
The best way to get around is via tuk-tuk. There is an abundance of them around, you should just be able to walk out of your guesthouse and negotiate a deal! It’s also quite a walkable city – you can easily spend a day on foot seeing the local sites, and hiring a Tuk Tuk to take you to sites outside the city.
Eat & Drink
- There is a really authentic Chinese noodle restaurant (Ian Chov Khorko) which does the most wonderful duck noodle soup and veg & pork dumplings (very similar to Japanese Gyoza.) Everything is around $2, delicious and homemade!
- Also, Jaan Bai is probably the best food in town it’s a local social enterprise serving Asian fusion food. Would highly recommend!
- Battambang is well-known for its street stalls. Wander around the river & the central market and try whatever takes your fancy! A local favourite is the whole roast chickens, turning on the spit.
Day and night
- Battambang is a sleepy town with both Asian and colonial influences. The whole town could be seen in one day. Explore the outskirts of the city and the temples on the second day.
- Absolutely visit the Sampeou Mountain. It is a fascinating historical site, once being used as a Khmer Rouge prison and execution site. It’s also a beautiful walk, filled with monkeys and birds and one of the most impressive natural spectacles I’ve ever witnessed! After walking to the top, arrive at the base in time to get a couple of ice cold beers and watch 10 million (!) bats leave the cave at dusk. Unmissable!
- There are many temples surrounding the town which are well worth visiting, including Wat Banan and Wat Ek Phnom which are Angkor in style (although not as fast as in Siem Reap!).
- The city itself is filled with interesting colonial architecture. Try a circuit incorporating walking along the river, the central market and some authentic Cambodian coffee.
- Do not miss the Bamboo Railway! You speed down an old train track, disembarking only to let other carriages pass. A really unique experience, highly recommended! You can visit Phnom Sampeu or some of the nearby Wats in one day, comfortably. Two days is ideal in Battambang.
- Battambang has a very sedate nightlife! There are a couple of bars but not much that is open after midnight. I would recommend taking time here to unwind and get up early for a fresh start while it’s still cool out.
Top Female Traveler Safety Tips
As per usual in South East Asia, watch out of bag snatching. Battambang is much safer compared to Phnom Penh/Siem Reap.
The Cambodian circus operates in Siem Reap and a quieter, better value version in Battambang. The performers are all people (no animal cruelty here!) who put on amazing gymnastic performances. An excellent social enterprise, well worth supporting. Book in advance.
The Seng Hout hotel. Very good value with a pool on the roof! An ideal way to cool down after a day in the dust and the heat.
Thank you, Elise, for the tips!
You can read more from Elise at her blog.
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From Wonderers to Wonderers, with love and care.
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