Today, an urban buzz has started to catch on in Battambang, thanks to its popular art galleries, quirky cafes and boutique hotels.
Enjoy these as well as great street food, vibrant tuk tuks and the rest of what the colourful centre has to offer during your stay here. Or if you are feeling more in need of a serene atmosphere, simply explore the authentic rural village life that surrounds this city and pass local farmers and artisans going about their daily business. Set upon on the banks of the Sangker River, Battambang is one of Cambodia’s largest towns – its graceful architecture built in colonial times has given it its right to currently be up for UNESCO World Heritage status. Despite its attractions, this town does not feature on the usual tourist beaten track so retains a peaceful feel and a distinct lack of crowds – a huge plus. Our favourite spot to visit here is the hilltop Angkorian temple of Wat Banan, which consists of five towers, leading some ambitious Battambang residents to claim it may have been the inspiration behind Angkor Wat. For sunset views, we recommend the
sacred mountain of Phnom Sampeau, which is dotted with interesting pagodas and stupas. Battambang is also home to Wat Ek Phnom and its giant Buddha statue; along with the popular ‘bamboo train’, a delightfully uncomplicated invention consisting of bamboo platforms with wheels that fly along the rail tracks!