Battambang: A relaxing contrast to Siem Reap and a place that you’ll end up staying for more than just 1 day. This place has friendly Cambodians and expats that give this place a perfectly combined fusion. Although a small city the food and drinks here are great and the vibe is very laid back so if you need to catch up on some work like I did than this is the place for you. Just like places in Laos the architecture reflects back to history and you’ll also find a lot of French people working and living here.
Must Eat 1
Kinyei: Dangerously addictive, this coffee house is pronounced to serve Cambodia’s award-winning coffee and it sure is good. We ended up staying here two days in a row… the whole day. In the morning we would start with a brunch afterwards a cheesecake snack and close off with a late lunch (it opens at 11:00 am until 4:00 pm).The place has not only the most amazing bagel with cream cheese and lox but, also the yummiest carrot cake muffins with yoghurt. Plus WiFi is so good that I was able to get some soul searching done (ok and a little bit of Facebook).
Must Eat 2
Jaan Bai: One word of advice is to book in advance as this place is packed often weeks ahead and it would be a shame to miss this food haven. The restaurant not only provides training and employment for youth but will give your taste buds an ultimate climax.
We choose the tasting menu for $15 with 7 courses and a wine, definitely worth the while. We ended up rolling outside after our dinner. Another piece of advice, if you choose to sit outside make sure you have a fan pointed straight at you cause otherwise protein is sure to fly into your mouth.
Must Do 1
Shopping: Bric a Brac and La Fabrik both have a Frenchy vibe yet owned by different incredibly artistic people. Bric a Brac is great place to stash up on some hand made espresso cups, bowls and plates. Or, get your hands on their vintage cushions imported from Myanmar they are absolutely beautiful.
However remember to bring your credit card cause you’ll need it here. A little further you’ll find La Fabrik which has a beautiful interior that shows off perfectly their jewelry, accessories and home made oils. Both boutiques are worth your visit and time.
Must Do 2
Bus Ticket: Don’t buy your bus ticket to Sihanoukville anywhere else expect for at TSS Transport Co Ltd. We only had to pay $10 for the entire journey instead of $25 elsewhere. We were so surprised that it was so cheap and so was the owner of our guesthouse when we told him the price. He says it might be a special offer but we didn’t hear anything about that when we bought it so for those of you going down south, make sure to book your tickets here.
Must Drink 1
Bric a Brac: Having been on the road for a few months now I’ve noticed that my boyfriend and I sometimes crave for some comfort food from back home (although we’re loving the Asian cuisine). In Amsterdam we were champs in sipping deep full dark red wines in combo with a smelly mouldy old cheese.So you can imagine the surprise yet also the love that we felt to enjoying a platter of cheese with a red wine in the middle of Asia. When the sunsets the candles are lit and the shadows dance friendly across the tropical plants and French shutters. However, it is a bit expensive as everything is imported but trust me it’s worth your while.
Must Drink 2
The Kitchen: a cozy place to finish the day. Located near the river and Night Market (which is nice to briefly stroll through as it’s really small), The Kitchen offers yummy tacos for only $1 during its happy hours which is perfect for a pre-dinner snack.
Must Drink 3
Sugar Cane: On the corners of the streets you’ll find men pushing bamboo like sticks through a juicer and serving up cold glasses of this stuff. What eventually revealed the true nature of this drink was the fact that hundreds of bees were swarming around the wooden like sticks. Then someone explained to us that it was Sugar Cane so we immediately stepped up to the plate to order a batch ourselves. The taste is sweet (Duuhh) and also a bit orangey, yum yum!
Seasons Guesthouse: Although the location is a small walk away from the center it’s worth the while. We first wanted to go to Ganesha Family Guesthouse or Tomato but both were already full so we ended up here and were quite happy. The rooms are enormously spacious, you have cable tv (woop woop got to see Maleficent again) and the owners are super friendly. Plus we paid $12 which is $6 per person, until now we haven’t had anything this clean and nice for that price before. They also have some cheaper rooms but we were too lazy to walk up an extra flight of stairs.
Cambodian Ladies in pajamas: A real trend here in Cambodia is for the women to wear matching top and bottom pajama sets during the day. Florar print or with a cartoon on it these suits are the hot item here. Wonder when this trend will kick in back home.
That’s all folks, next stop: Koh Rong Sanloem Cambodia
For tips on other places I’ve visited check my older posts such as: Bali,Malaysia, Thailand & More.
Keep you updated and posted, until then: orkun!