Phnom Penh Free and Easy Trip ~ Through TCW's eye

Before landing to Phonm Penh International Airport

Beautiful scenery of Mekong River
My first impression of Cambodia people is fierce and some are so poor. The tuk tuk driver face is fierce and very aggressive asking around for business. There are a lot of beggars at street and kids sleeping beside the road. Phnom Penh is a noisy and dusty city as you can hear car and tuk tuk horns blasting everywhere to alert all the driver.We need to hold on the rail of the tuk tuk tightly and be careful all the time to see left and right before crossing the road. But we are lucky enough that we have pre-arrangement help on this trip and thanks to Jacob the boss of Harvest Inn and Boran our tour guide. Boran is a university student and currently working as part time for Harvest Inn. We have a pleasant and relax trip! For those who is going Phnom Penh, I will truly suggest that you should contact Harvest Inn.
Our tour guide : Boran!

Hotel :

We have a enjoyable stay at the River 108 which is near the Mekong river and night market. This hotel is consider mid range but is pricey. It cost about USD90 per night for river view. It is strategically located near the river, Royal Palace, Museum, Pagoda and Central Market. The hotel staff is friendly and helpful. You able to get the free map at the hotel or during the arrival at airport.


First day when we arrive, we tried the fast food restaurant for pizza near the Mekong river.
It cost us about $11 for two person with a medium pizza, refill coke and 6pcs chicken wings.
We have great American breakfast at the Fish Restaurant.

We enjoy the Illy's coffee very much near the Mekong river.
Feel so good of the aroma coffee and taking the first sip really make me feel fresh.

Beef noodle soup ($2.50) is one of my favourite Cambodian local food.

Beside, the Phnom Penh delicious coconut ice cream ($2) and loaf bread with beef curry ($2) is tasty and surprisingly it is open by Chinese Cambodian which can speak mandarin well.

The fried banana is also crispy and is only $0.25 per piece which you can find it at Russian market. At the nearby stall, we have also tried the fresh orange juice and iced coffee which cost only $1 each. We have also tried the spring roll which is in Vietnamese style at night market.

Then we proceed to the FCC (Foreign Correspondence Club) restaurant to enjoy our dinner at the roof top. We have order the grilled pork chop and Cambodian local food fried beef with oyster sauce and rice, and not to forget the Angkor beer. The total bill cost us $27 which is reasonable. Angkor beer is really cheap and you can get it at $0.60 during happy hour from 5-7pm.

You can also get cheap Swensen ice cream ($5 for 4 scoops) full of variety at the Sorya Mall.
The currency used at Phnom Penh is mostly USD and for small change it will be in Riel. You can always change the big note at fast food restaurant or hotels.

Tourist location:

Wat Phnom - It is a temple for the Cambodian and located uphill and we can see the statue and huge clock. Entrance fees is $1.00 per person.

Royal Palace - This place is closed during lunch and open at 2.oopm, so make sure to schedule your time.

TuolSleng Genocide Museum - The entrance fees is $2 per person. This is a prison museum which converted from primary high school. This place is the crime scenes of inhuman killing by the 'Khmer rouge' during the 70's. We felt uneasy and the atmosphere causes goosebump sensation. We can't really imagine this is just happen 35 years ago. The torture machine, the cells make of brick & wood to separate each prisoners, the photo of each prisoners with their tagging numbers, the skeleton and the story behind is so cruel.

Russian Market - You can find variety things here from clothes (you can name all the branded clothes here i.e GAP,Levis, Guess), bags, hardware, food market, CDs and souvenirs here. I am not able to differentiate whether is pirated or those are rejected clothes, so make sure you make a wise purchase if you going to Russian market.

Central Market - This place is also compact with a lot of small stalls and each selling different items. You can also find Iphone and all type of jewelry.

Night Market - Is situated near Street 108 which is just in front of our hotel. The night market have a stage that have people dancing and singing to entertain the locals.

Massage - We have try the Khmer massage at the Island Massage shop which is located at the Sisowath Quay which have good Cambodian skill for full massage with oil or powder which cost only $7/hr. The pedicure and manicure only cost $4. Please prepare some tips for the ladies on their skillful hand massage.

Naga World - This is a 5 star hotel which have casino. All sort of games can be found and you can try your luck but remember all game is in USD currency and minimum play is USD5.

The standard of living at Phnom Penh is high. There is a big gap between the rich and poor.
I found there is a lot of Chinese Cambodian which doing well on their trading business. I really wonder what is the pay for the fresh graduate at Phnom Penh as their standard of living is high and expenses in USD. We felt the airport taxes charge is high compare to others country like Thailand. We need to fork out additional USD 25 per person for airport taxes. You will need to pay this when departure at airport and right after check in. It is compulsory to all foreigners. So please prepare the $$$$.
The only photo of me and my pretty wife ....
Thank you for viewing!


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Anonymous said…
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- Kris
TCWPhotography said…
HI Cyrus,

Thanks for viewing my post!

Hi Kris,

What issue you mentioned?
Anonymous said…
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Yvonne said…
very nice pics of phnom penh. been there recently and your pics really bring back sweet memories. keep up the good work. may God bless your work
Michelle said…

My name is Michelle, the cambodian chinese girl who opened the noodle shop which you have visited 3 years ago.

I am very appreciate for the pic that you took of my noodle soup.
Hope you see you visit our shop again.

TCWPhotography said…
Hey Michelle,

I think I remembered you. Nice to meet you here and you are most welcome :)
You got facebook acc so that we can catch up more?