Battambang as a tourist destination?

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timmydownawell
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Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by timmydownawell » Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:51 pm

I'm visiting Battambang for the first time, and it's like a country town (definitely hard to believe it's Cambodia's second largest city).

The thing that surprised me most is that the Riverside, with all its wonderful 2-storey colonial buildings, is effectively a string of mobile phone shops and similar, with virtually no bars, restaurants or any kind of tourist infrastructure. There's the night market but that's tiny and very limited. It's a huge wasted opportunity. I don't want it to turn into a PP-style seedy Riverside, but maybe the timing is right for someone to open a restaurant and bar or two. Especially with passenger trains from Bangkok-Phnom Penh resuming later in the year, I think people might be inclined to hop off for a couple of days in Battambang enroute to break up the journey (admittedly they're going to have to change trains at Poipet anyway).

Could it become the Kampot of the north?
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by cptrelentless » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:01 pm

As it's more of an O than an A in khmer, are the locals called Bottombangers?
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by Takmav » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:12 pm

Eden, the River and riverside are all good restaurants on the riverside. There is another bigger nightmarket near second bridge and there are some good Khmer restaurants south of there. Some upmarket restaurants on the east side of the River. Japanese place very popular. All the ngos go there.
Although not all on the River there are some very good restaurants in Battambang. Try the aircon veggie place for buffet lunch. They changed the name to Sen Monoram or something similar.
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by Takmav » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:15 pm

cptrelentless wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:01 pm
As it's more of an O than an A in khmer, are the locals called Bottombangers?
They translate it Badtambong
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by Duncan » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:28 pm

timmydownawell wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:51 pm
I'm visiting Battambang for the first time, and it's like a country town (definitely hard to believe it's Cambodia's second largest city).

The thing that surprised me most is that the Riverside, with all its wonderful 2-storey colonial buildings, is effectively a string of mobile phone shops and similar, with virtually no bars, restaurants or any kind of tourist infrastructure. There's the night market but that's tiny and very limited. It's a huge wasted opportunity. I don't want it to turn into a PP-style seedy Riverside, but maybe the timing is right for someone to open a restaurant and bar or two. Especially with passenger trains from Bangkok-Phnom Penh resuming later in the year, I think people might be inclined to hop off for a couple of days in Battambang enroute to break up the journey (admittedly they're going to have to change trains at Poipet anyway).

Could it become the Kampot of the north?


You have a few Chinese friends in Kampot you want to invite to Battam.
Cambodia,,,, Don't fall in love with her.
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by Bitte_Kein_Lexus » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:55 pm

I don't understand what you're getting at. Battambang has long been a stop off point for tourists (both domestic and foreign) as well as expats. Kampot is perhaps slightly more popular with expats for weekend retreats because of its proximity to Phnom Penh, but Battambang gets tons of tourists and voluntourists.
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by timmydownawell » Sun Jan 21, 2018 3:49 pm

Bitte_Kein_Lexus wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:55 pm
I don't understand what you're getting at. Battambang has long been a stop off point for tourists (both domestic and foreign) as well as expats. Kampot is perhaps slightly more popular with expats for weekend retreats because of its proximity to Phnom Penh, but Battambang gets tons of tourists and voluntourists.
Well, I'm seeing tourists and guesthouses around, but I feel it's a wasted opportunity - particularly the riverfront, which would be a very appealing destination for dinner and drinks. The tourist infrastructure seems to be eluding me.
Last edited by timmydownawell on Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by Sumac » Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:24 pm

Kinyei, just around the corner from the central market, is a great place for coffee and breakfast. And Jaan Bai in the same alley, which is a training restaurant, has some of the tastiest dishes and cocktails I've had anywhere in Cambodia. A few blocks away there's a little French restaurant which is great for sidewalk beers and people watching called Madison. You won't find many western style pubs in town but there are plenty of decent restaurants where you can enjoy some drinks. Let's hope Battambang never gets a pub street like Siem Reap.
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by phuketrichard » Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:38 pm

got a job there in 2012 with the Phare circus, after 10 days i told them i had to leave ( told them I had to return to the states) as the town was just to dam boring for the gf and me
its nice to stroll along the riverside in the evening, watch them do aerobics an have a cheap meal but after 7 pm....
you can only visit the caves once or twice, same goes for a picnic out on the lake..
there were a few ok western style places (of which i am sure there more) but..... its a country town billing itself as a city
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Re: Battambang as a tourist destination?

Post by that genius » Sun Jan 21, 2018 5:00 pm

Not sure I would call it a riverside, in the dry season you can literally jump across the river, more of a creek

Agree with richard, boring town, and expensive accommodation, thanks to a history of Korean/Japanese NGOs who gave their staff insane accommodation allowances

A Donald Trump town, imho
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