Phnom Penh Area Guides
Everything you Need to Know about Phnom Penh Areas
Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia since 1434, is not only the biggest but also the wealthiest city in the country. It is located in the south-central part of the country and offers beautiful and historical architecture and attractions such as the Royal Palace, and vintage colonial buildings as well as temples.
Some major parts of the city are divided up by grand boulevards including Monivong and Norodom boulevards going north to south and Pochentong and Sihanouk boulevards going east to west.
Wat Phnom and Northern Part of the City
The area around Wat Phnom and the northern part of Phnom Penh is where many people considered the city centre. There is lovely vintage colonial architecture around as well as a good number of up-market dining venues. Visitors will find a variety of accommodation, from three-star to luxury hotels in the area including River 108, Sunway Hotel Phnom Penh and Raffles Hotel Le Royal.
The soon-to-be-gone Boeng Kak Lake is also in this area. Once known as a backpacker centre with cheap guesthouses and restaurants as well as internet shops, this natural lake is to be replaced with a huge and controversial development project.
Central District and Psar Thmei Market
It is easy to spot Phnom Penh’s biggest market Psar Thmei with its interesting art-deco dome and central location. Shoppers will enjoy strolling around and checking out the goods on offer. It has everything, from fresh food to gold and cheap electronic gadgets to animals, you name it! There are food stands, restaurants (many are Chinese), café and bars around the market.
The city’s most modern department store called Sorya Mall is also a short walking distant away. This area is a major landmark of the city therefore you can easily find many choices of accommodation around.
Boeung Keng Kang 1 Area
Boeung Keng Kang 1 (or BKK1in short) is located southeast of the Independence Monument. It is known as the foreigner or NGO or UN land/neighborhood as this is where you’ll find embassies, UN and NGO offices on top of many stylish restaurants, café, boutiques, spas and travel agents as well as modern apartments. The area is considered the most charming in Phnom Penh.
There’s a local market by the name Boeung Keng Kang Market worth having a look at. This is where many goods, including clothes and second-hand products are for sale. Also if you fancy ‘real’ local food, stop by at the stalls just south of the monument. Here they have food available until very late at night. Hotel options are plenty in this area such as The Governor's House Colonial Hotel and Frangipani Villa 90s.
Sisowath Quay is a striking three-kilometre-long boulevard, located along the intersection of the Tonle Sap and Mekong rivers. This is perhaps the most bustling area in the city, with a row of boutiques, bars, cafes, restaurants and luxury hotels (including the FCC Phnom Penh Boutique Hotel and The Quay Boutique Hotel).
Nevertheless, Sisowath Quay has a cool, relaxing atmosphere allowing both Cambodians and tourists to enjoy a delightful getaway there. On the western side of the Sisowath Quay is the Royal Palace that is still the residence of Cambodia’s king. Another major landmark that is easily accessible from Sisowath Quay is the National Museum – a great place to explore one of the world’s largest collections of Khmer cultural and historical artifacts. Read More...
Street 51, BKK1 Area
Street 51 in BKK 1 Area is the place to go after dark, especially when you feel lonely and need someone to talk to or if you are simply looking for late night entertainment.
Most places along this location open early evening and carry on until late or in some cases until the sunrise but there are a few hostess bars that are open 24/7 and never close their doors. Among the most popular clubs and bars on Street 51 to check out are the Heart of Darkness, Shanghai and Walkabout.
Prek Leap District
Prek Leap is outside Phnom Penh and is very popular among locals as a dining and nightlife district. You will know that you are in the right place once you start to see the restaurant signs, one after another, all in Khmer. Most of the venues here offer authentic Khmer and/or Khmer –Chinese food.
As for the entertainment scene, expect to see many karaoke, comedy shows and other stage shows. To get there, simply cross the Cambodian-Japanese Friendship Bridge and follow Route 6. It’s safest to get there by taxi.