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Phnom Penh is one of the most accessible places in Cambodia. Here’s the ultimate transportation guide to Phnom Penh to help you get around.
Giant Ibis is one of the best bus companies in Southeast Asia. Here’s my review of my experience getting from Kampot to Phnom Penh with them.
The minivan from Sihanoukville to Kampot is incredibly quick and convenient. Here’s what to expect when traveling with CTT Transport.
The 131 km journey from Kampot to Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s lively capital, takes between 3.5 and 4 hours. You can choose from a variety of options to cover this distance - air-conditioned tourist buses, minivans or private cars.
For those on a backpacking trip through Cambodia, we recommend the tourist buses or minivans. With convenient timings, comfortable seating, and affordable prices, they provide value-for-money for budget travelers. Some of the service providers even offer hotel pick up. The tourist bus even offers a light snack and bottled water. You can also choose to book a private minivan for your trip if you are traveling with a large group. Buses and minivans are a popular choice for those traveling from Kampot to Phnom Penh, so we recommend you book ahead if you are planning to opt for one.
If you want flexibility in terms of timings, have extra luggage to carry, or want privacy, then renting a car may be the best thing to do. Depending on the size of your group, you can choose between a standard size car or SUV for your journey from Kampot to Phnom Penh.
Buses and minivans take closer to 4 hours to cover the distance while private taxis take about three and a half hours.
Idyllic countryside scenes await you on your trip from Kampot to Phnom Penh. Whether you are traveling by bus or minivan or taxi, sit back and take in the peaceful sights of locals going about their daily chores, green paddy fields, coconut and sugar palm trees dotting the landscape and the Bokor Mountains in the distance.
If you have booked a minivan for your group or are traveling by taxi, you can stopover at a fruit stall for a bite of watermelon or local fruit. If you are visiting the region after the monsoons, you are in for a visual treat as the entire countryside is decked in shades of green.
Once you get closer to Phnom Penh, you might have to deal with heavy traffic and traffic jams. Phnom Penh is a busy city, and you will get to see bikes, buses, taxis and tuk-tuks jostling for space. Do note that road conditions deteriorate during and immediately following the monsoons.
Kampot, like most of Cambodia, sees warm temperatures throughout the year. Day time highs fall in the range of 30°C - 34°C ( 86°F- 93°F) while nighttime lows rarely fall below 20°C.
Cambodia experiences primarily two seasons - a dry season that runs from October to April and a wet season that starts in the second half of May and goes all the way till September. With day time temperatures in the range of low 30s (86°F - 89°F), clear, blue skies, and little to no rain, the months from December to March are the best times to visit Kampot.
Rainfall levels start to increase by April and May, but they are usually in the form of short downpours. Though hot and humid, these months are a good time to visit Kampot if you don't mind the occasional shower. It is also a good time to score deals. To escape the heat, hire a scooter and ride up to the Phnom Bokor National Park. Breathtaking views of the Kampot countryside, ruins of the Black Palace, and the Old Catholic Church make this a must-do day trip from Kampot.
By June, the monsoon sets in firmly. Rainfall levels and the number of rainy days keep increasing through September. 75% of the rain received by the region is between the months of July and September, with September being the wettest month. Day time temperatures are usually around 31°C (88°F)
By the second half of October, the rains begin to subside, leaving behind a lush and green countryside. Rainfall levels continue to fall in November, making it another good month to visit Kampot before the crowds arrive. With temperatures now around 30°C (85°F), it's an excellent time to head out to the Kampot Salt Fields for a fascinating insight into the salt-making process. We also recommend a tour of the pepper plantations in the region. December brings with it cool winds, great weather, and big crowds. It's a popular month to visit the region, so make sure you book ahead.
Cambodia's capital city, Phnom Penh, experiences warm weather throughout the year with temperatures ranging from 29°C (84°F) during the dry season to 35°C (95°F) during the rainy season. The wet months see a rise not only in temperatures but also humidity levels. The best time to visit Phnom Penh is the period from December to February. These months see clear skies and pleasant temperatures in the range of 30°C - 33°C (86°F - 91°F), providing the right conditions to visit the Royal Palace and the Wat Phnom Buddhist temple. It is also a good time to sightsee the region’s outdoor attractions such as The Killing Fields and the S21 prison, a reminder of the country’s tragic past.
Mercury levels rise to around 35°C (95°F) during March-May making it the hottest months of the year. Humidity levels also rise, making temperatures seem higher than they are. If you are visiting Phnom Penh during these months, visit the National Museum and Genocide Museum for some respite from the day time heat and during the night, head to the Phnom Penh Night Market to sample some of Cambodia's best street food! We recommend a night cruise on the Mekong River, the perfect end to a hectic day of sightseeing.
July is wet and rainy, and the showers get more frequent and intense as the month’s progress. September and October are the rainiest months of the year. By November, the rains begin to subside. The beautiful green surroundings, full lakes and rivers, and the Cambodian Water Festival make November one of the best times to visit Phnom Penh. Boat races, fireworks, and music concerts are all part of the Cambodian Water Festival that marks the end of the monsoon season.