What to do when you have 24 hours in Phnom Penh
Where: Places to visit
Genocide Museum-Tuol Sleng Museum
This museum is one of the kind. It is actually an old school building but turned into a torture house when it got taken over by I forgot his name. Some parts of the meseum spooked me, especially because I went there on my own. but this museum is definitely not to be missed. There is the burial ground called the killing fields about 20 minutes away, but I did not go as it was too expensive for me to get a tuk tuk alone.
This place the moment you walk in it gives you most eerie feeling. It was emotional knowing that thousands was killed here, and this was just 40 years ago, no one in the world know what was happening in Cambodia. You would actually go through the rooms they used to torture people, and the various kinds of ‘instruments’ used to torture people. I was walking alone on the second floor of the third block at the ‘individual cells’ made of wood. It was super scary I am not even kidding I literally RAN out because it was quiet, dark and no one was there. That area was not inviting if you know what I mean.
This is a stunning palace where the king stays (but do they really). Its place right smack in the city but I unfortunately couldn’t go in because I was wearing sleeveless top and had to pay USD20 to buy a shawl that would cover me up. Frustrated at the time but since I got two shawls in my hotel room so nop, didn’t go in. So take note, no shorts, no sleeveless.
What: Activities to do
Bicycle tour with Grasshopper adventures
I woke up on a public holiday at 6am and just googled what to do early am in Phnom Penh and came across this. I am not a biker but I thought what the heck. Took a tuk tuk to the middle of the town where the Grasshopper’s office are located. There was just me and three other Americans on the tour for that day.
It was a super nice bike ride into kampung. we ride out of town and into a ferry, yeap! was so stoked on the fact that I took a bike on a ferry. We ride across the kampung where we pretty much saw alot of the Cambodian life, cow farming, temples, monks going to school, children walking around, paddy fields-it was all so scenic and surprisingly breath taking. We even got served with fresh local fruits and seafood lunch at the end of the trip!
For a biking level of difficulty of 3/5 I think I did a pretty good job and highly recommend this if you’re up for a different kind of Cambodian experience although riding up the bridge can be tiring and some off roads can be slippery.
Need i say more? They might not be as good as the Thais, but one shall never pass on a good Cambodian massage.
Where: To grab the best coffee
Amatak Kettlebell Cafe
I went to Phnom Pehn twice, and since the first trip I’ve covered pretty much the touristy stuffs, the second time around I was up to hunt for coffee. Only had a day to discover 7 places, but only one was worthy to be written.
Quoting Phnom Penh Post, this is where you can “eat like a caveman and drink like a hipster”. Owned by an American, its actually a crossfit gym with a small little pop up cafe in the wall. Located near the Russian market, The Kettlebell Cafe
How: Best way to go around
There is no uber when I was there, and pretty sure there’s still ain’t any. Tuk tuk is the best way to get around (and cheapest), this is one of the best time to practice your bargaining skills. Mind you the city is super dusty with construction site almost everywhere so be sure to wear a mask!
Another form of transportation you can consider when alone in Phnom Penh-motorcycle, easy to find. Upon walking out of a tourist spot if walking by the road they will always be random people by the road to ask you whether you want a tuk tuk or bike. A cheaper alternative option. I opted for this one most of the time as I was travelling alone.
Have a good stay in Phnom Penh Xx