When the Khmer Rouge seized power in 1975, the population of Cambodia was in the neighborhood of seven-and-a-half million people. The number of people who died over the next four years, until the Vietnamese invaded Cambodia and ended the Khmer Rouge genocide, varies from study to study; but most estimates point to the death of a quarter of the population. […]
Of all the places we have been, the small city of Battambang in northwestern Cambodia may be our favorite. It is certainly near the top of the list.
Our first stay in Battambang lasted nine days, which was the longest we had stayed put in one place to that point in our travels. Later, when we needed a place to spend a month rehabilitating Jen’s ankle injury, we returned to Battambang, choosing it over all other places on the globe.
The town has all the ingredients for our ideal destination: good accommodations, good restaurants, friendly locals, an interesting culture and history, things to see and do in the area, few tourists, and low cost.
On this page, we have gathered our main stories about Battambang. For restaurant and hotel reviews, look under the “Eat in Cambodia” and “Sleep in Cambodia” categories.
Jen and I are exercise people. After months on the road without anything resembling an exercise program, both of us were feeling out of shape. Added to this was Jen’s ankle injury, which was two months old and still far from being healed. We needed a place to park for a while, rehabilitate the ankle, and get back some of […]
As I write this, we are in Andalusia, Spain; in a house in a rural area with no close neighbors; and the nearest village a small thing about a kilometer away, down a narrow, dirt road. At night, it is pitch black in the house. During the day, it is sunny. There are few, if any, cars that go past […]
One thing we have learned in our travels through Southeast Asia is that you really need you own wheels. That means renting a motorbike. In Cambodia, everyone and their sister owns a motorbike. They run from 100cc to 125cc in engine size, and lie somewhere between a moped and a dirt bike on the motorcycle spectrum. The degree to which […]
Our Khmer language tutor, Khena, invited us to a Bon Katen at a Wat located a little over an hour’s motorbike ride east of Battambang. A Bon Katen is a celebration that raises donations for the Wat, or Buddhist temple complex. As we would discover, it’s a bit more than just that. Khena met us at our hotel at 8:00am […]
The Buddhist temple complex of Wat Somrong Knong is located just a few kilometers north of Battamabang, and a little east of the Sangkar River. Part of the history of the Wat is that it was used by the Khmer Rouge as a prison; a place where people were interrogated, tortured, and executed during the Pol Pot regime. It is […]
We spent several days in Battambang. It is a pleasant city, that is small enough to be called a town, yet big enough to have a wide selection of accommodations and places to eat. It is an easy town to get into and through, and the people are nice – as has been the case throughout our travels in Cambodia. […]
There is a vineyard near Battambang, the Prasat Banan Winery. It is located south of Battambang, around kilometer marker 10 on Route 155, which is the road that travels along the west bank of the Stung Sangker River. We had a sampler of four of their products: a rose wine, a brandy, a non-alcoholic grape juice, and a non-alcoholic ginger […]