Phnom Penh - city with rich and beautiful history
To the capital city of Cambodia – Phnom Penh we went from Mekong Delta in Vietnam. Bus from Can Tho to Phnom Penh costs 16 USD. Bus leaves Can Tho from the stop next to the bus station, exactly from this house. The ride was again really crazy as anywhere else in Asia. At the border everything went smoothly until they tried to convince us to pay more than 30 USD for visa. We denied paying more and gave them exactly 60 USD for 2 persons. Always have exact amount otherwise they will refuse to give you a change! We witnessed that. After filling several forms and letting the officer know he is not getting anything extra to his pocket, we followed in our journey and already were in Cambodia. After a short time we also reached Phnom Penh metropolis.
Accommodation and managing things in Phnom Penh
After our arrival we had to find hotel. Getting accommodation downtown is easy for 8 USD/night but without air-con. We tried to switch it on the telephone with infraport (as a remote control) but did not succeed they had it all fixed. 🙂 When we found our accommodation we went to search for street food. Food was cheap, on the streets they usually say prices in RIEL – another currency. During our stay it was 4000 riels = 1 USD. It is possible to pay with both currencies but you can withdraw only USD from ATM. We became vegetarians in Cambodia because local cuisine was not so delicious but we always loved to have noodles with fresh vegetables and egg on the street. After a good meal we needed to buy local sim card with fast internet, LTE is a common thing but make sure you know what frequencies your phone supports! For 4 USD we bought a sim card by SMAR with 1,5 GB internet, unlimited texts and had 4 USD for calls we never used at all. And on the next day we were able to start exploring the city and Cambodia!
We soon found out that city is very compact and everything is in walkable distance therefore not necessary to use public transport. We did not miss Wat Phnom, Buddhist temple with beautiful stupa on the top and at the entrance there are interesting natural clock. Our next stop was Central Market, where you can buy literally everything. And it was also possible to haggle with locals. Cambodians have the natural sense for haggling and we were happy because everyone is satisfied then. 🙂 Top attraction of the city is Royal palace. Entrance fee to the complex costs 6,50 USD/foreigner which is quite a lot of money for Cambodia but it is worth the money! Complex is giant so make sure you have at least 2-3 hours for exploring. And do not forget that the palace is open 7:30 – 11:00 and then opens again at 14:00 – 17:00. Try to avoid this area while it is closed because there are many tuk tuk drivers trying to offer you an overpriced ride. There are many beautiful temples in the palace are and the most famous is Silver Pagoda for its Emerald Buddha and floor made of silver. The entire palace is a display of gems and beautiful architecture we haven’t seen before.
Curiosity is that the palace is inhabited by present king Sihamoni who used to study in former Czechoslovakia! 😉 If you want to know more about history of Cambodia and also dominance of Khmer Rouge then we definitely recommend you to visit Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum. The visit should be mandatory for all presidents and monarchs. Entrance fee is 3 USD/person. We do not suggest visiting this museum with small kids as it is very emotional experience.
And because we like adventure we decided to go from Phnom Penh to Battambang.
Tento příspěvek je také k dispozici v jazyce: Czech