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Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
655 posts
60 reviews
Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

Hi there

We are thinking of taking a private taxi from PP to BB in December.

Will it save much time on the Mekong Express bus trip?

Is it practical to stop at the bamboo train along the way or is it the wrong direction?

Are there any other potential tourist stops along this route to break the journey as will have a whole day?

Thanks for your help.

Sydney
Level Contributor
821 posts
106 reviews
1. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

No to Bamboo Train and no to tourist stops. Just stop for lunch and a break and take in the countryside. You will save about an hour or so by taxi,rather than bus

Las Animas, Colorado
Level Contributor
2,341 posts
8 reviews
2. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

If you have the full day you might consider a stop in Kg. Chhnang. You can easily hire a boat and go out through the floating village for an hour, have lunch, and then continue on to Battambang. There are also a number of potters outside of the town itself, but that would involve more time than an hour or two.

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
655 posts
60 reviews
3. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

Thanks Lynn and Lisa.

I like your plan Lynn and think we will work with that.

Nan Province...
Level Contributor
536 posts
333 reviews
4. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

I agree with Lynn, Kampong Chhanng makes a great stop-over.

The Bamboo train is a bit of a tourist thing but still a funny experience. But do not stop on the way to Battambang for it, just do from Battambang (very close by).

Along the route you will also be passing Oudong with the "Royal Tombs" but that involves a bit walking of stairs to the hill with the Chedi. Although I must say .... I did both Kampong Channg and Oudong when traveling to Battambang. The road between PP and Battambang is good, at least a few months ago.

Gosport, United...
Level Contributor
6,320 posts
36 reviews
5. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

Yep, the Bamboo Train is basically on the outskirts of Battambang.

It's best done at the start of a day in the glorious National Geographic quality countryside surrounding Battambang.

The Bamboo Train is touristy, it's fun, it's inexpensive ($5), and it might not be there for much longer.

Quezon City...
Level Contributor
70 posts
69 reviews
6. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

As many here have suggested, Oudong is a good choice. I went there around 6 weeks ago. Fantastic day trip from PP.

Wrote about my trip here: iwandered.net/2013/…

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
15,277 posts
5 reviews
7. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

Hello April in VN.

Firstly, neither the Mekong Express Bus Co. nor the Giant Ibis Co. operate services on the route Phnom Penh to Battambang. Only the B, C and D rated bus companies service this route along RN 5.

Secondly, there are several interesting stopping points along the route but some local knowledge is need to get the best out of them.

Circa one hour ten minutes out from Phnom Penh are the mixed ethnicity copper and silver smithing villages of Kg Luong Commune. Then, a further six or so km on is the former royal capitol of Oudong with its mountain Temple and, again requiring local knowledge, the traditional Cambodian handicraft practitioners for cane basket weaving, palm leaf basket and gift box weaving and also the weaving of the traditional Cambodian sleeping mats.

Moving further along on the highway for about another hour to Kg Chhnang where you have the floating villages, mostly but not entirely of Vietnamese ethnicity. If you stop here to see the floating villages please be sure to take only the very small rowed boats and not the larger powered boats, as only the rowed boats take you inside the floating villages which is what most travellers/photographers want. The powered boats are only permitted to circle the perimeter of the floating villages so as not to disturb the occupants. The very small local wooden boats are rowed with a single oar by a woman standing upright to do so. And, of course, several traditional Cambodian pottery villages and from where those lovely ox carts and motorised contrivances laden with low-fired earthenware pots originate. Again, just driving in to these villages you will probably miss a lot of interesting potters as you will either not see them or know their whereabouts within the villages because the majority work in the undercroft of their own homes.

Then at Pursat is the gasping remnants of a once thriving soft stone carving industry but, sadly, now on its last legs. Pursat is also a very good place to stop for refreshments and toilets as there is an excellent Cambodian equivalent of a "Road House" where the food is very good and modestly priced. It is on the Battambang side of Pursat.

Between Pursat and Battambang there is little of general interest to the majority of tourists.

I hope that this is of some assistance.

Best regards. Ian

Edited: 08 December 2013, 05:39
Port Moody, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver, British Columbia
Level Contributor
13,725 posts
152 reviews
8. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

Angorlad..a, planning on doing this drive in early November and as I am an ex-potter would particularly like to stop/ find some local potters. Do you know of any guide/ driver we can hire in Phnom Penh who would have some of this knowledge? Would also like to stop and spend some time in the floating villages...have nothing confirmed right now but starting to do a serious plan.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
15,277 posts
5 reviews
9. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

Hello traveller47,

My original reply to you just vanished! So I try again.

The answer to your question is a resounding yes.

Two of the part-time, as available, English-speaking, Camboian female Tourist Assistants, Khom and Davy, have particularly strong connections with the potters. Khom because she spends a lot of time with the potters and Davy because she is a buyer of pots from them for her flower stall at the Phnom Penh Night Market on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.

If you would like details about the Tourist Assistants activity then please send me an email address by the Tripadvisor secure PM = Personal Message system and I shall send you full details and photos etc. Please do NOT post your email address to this open forum.

November is not the best of times for visiting because the potters are mostly out preparing and planting their fields and the new rice. But with a guide who really knows the potters personally then quite a lot can be seen.

But rather than just making a transit stop en route to BTB, I would suggest that you will get far more out of this region by making an overnight stop and then continuing to BTB after lunch the next day.

I note that you are from Canada?

Last night, Alan Lacovetsky, the foremost Canadian wood firing potter phoned me. Alan is briefly in Sydney and wishes to catch up with me again. Alan has spent time working alongside these potters and admires their throwing and wheel skills.

I shall be back with the potters of Kg Chhnang and the minorities potters of NE Cambodia end of April early May.

In addition, Bruce Fairman, an American potter from California who spends at least four months each year with his potters at the Khmer Artisans Project pottery (qv Google) will start up the project again in the last week of April.

Best regards. Ian

10. Re: Suggested stops for car trip Phnom Penh to Battambang?

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