How to get from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh?

From Siem Reap to Phnom Penh: distance, travel time, prices

Yana Safina
author of the article

How to get from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh?

It is possible to get from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh by bus, plane, motorboat, and taxi. By bus and motorboat, travel time will be 7 hours. The flight will take only 50 minutes but wait time may take up to a day. By taxi, one can get to the capital in 5 hours. The cost of a bus ticket is on average 12 dollars, a motorboat ticket - 40 dollars, and an air ticket and a taxi trip cost 100 dollars. The distance between Siem Reap and Phnom Penh is 320 km.

As the railroad in Cambodia is not at its best state now, the most economical and relatively comfortable way to get from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh is the bus. The condition of the roads in the country is bad, and many parts are still unpaved. Be ready that at the end of the trip, your suitcases in a baggage compartment will be covered with a thick layer of dust. Think about a trip on a motorboat as an exotic entertainment - you will unlikely want to use this type of transport again: the conditions are too uncomfortable. The peculiar feature of a ground transport is its extreme unpunctuality. A 3-hour delay is almost a norm. The quickest way to travel across the country is by plane, but flights timetable is very unstable. As a result, the most convenient way to get round in Cambodia is the taxi.

Cambodia: risen from the ashes

The small Asian state of Cambodia suffered a lot, but the country survived and is now actively developing. The railway connection between Sihanoukville and Phnom Penh has already been restored, and the roads are being repaired. For tourists, the main attraction in the country is the world-known temple complex of Angkor Wat, located 5 km away from Siem Reap. In the capital, Phnom Penh, there are places worth visiting, too, as the city was once one of the most beautiful in colonial Asia. Take, for example, Silver Pagoda, where the greatest treasure of Cambodia is kept.

Plane from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh

Plane from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh
Cost

$100

Wait time

up to 1 day

Travel time

65min

Clients

Couple

Three air companies operate flights to Phnom Phen: Cambodia Angkor Air, Bayon Airlines, and Bassaka Air. An air ticket costs approximately 100 dollars but there often are sales and one can get a cheaper ticket. A flight duration is 50 minutes.
Air tickets can be bought at the offices of travel agencies or on special websites. In high season, it is almost impossible to buy tickets for the nearest dates.

Plane from Siem Reap to Phnom Phen:

Cambodia Angkor Air, Bayon Airlines, Bassaka Air

Timetable:

changes daily — it is better to get information on the official sites of airlines

Route:

Siem Reap International Airport — Phnom Penh International Airport

Travel time:

65 min

Wait time:

up to 1 day

Comfort level:

average: much space, baggage is included in the ticket cost, free water or cooled soft drinks onboard

Price:

∼100 dollars

Clients:

for businessmen and wealthy people; elderly people

How to get to Siem Reap Airport:

The airport is located 7 kilometers away from the city. It is possible to get there by tuk-tuk or taxi. Soon, the new terminal is planned to be opened for international flights, 60 km away from the city.

Bus from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh

Bus from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh
Cost

$4-18

Wait time

up to 4h

Travel time

7h

Clients

Couple

Many buses running on this route are operated by different companies and differ in price and comfort level. The price varies from 4 to 18 dollars. Travel time is around 7 hours, but in fact, one can spend en route much more. It depends on the roads congestion.
In Cambodia, there are not only regular and sleeper buses, but also a special bus type called hotel-bus. In the latter, there are 2 bunks of beds like on a train. Every bunk is designed for 2 people. If you travel alone, you will have to lie with a stranger.

Buses from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh:

private buses

Timetable:

from 5-30 to 24-00

Route:

Hotel/Office of a carrier company/ Siem Reap bus station - Office of a carrier company/Phnom Penh bus station
* In Cambodia, there is no developed bus connection - bus tickets are sold either at hotels or at multiple transport companies, so the bus either departs from the hotel or office of a carrier company. In addition, there are tuk-tuks running to the city bus station, where you can change to an intercity bus. This transfer is included in the ticket price. Buses, too, arrive either at the central bus station or at the company’s office.

Travel time:

7h

Wait time:

30 min — 4 h

Comfort level:

low — regular buses, as a rule, are shabby, make a lot of stops, picking up passengers on the way
average — buses of a higher comfort level with seats and semi-sleeping places
high — hotel-buses with bunks for two; blankets, pillows, and water are available; Wi-Fi
*the latter two bus types only make stops for the rest and a quick meal

Price:

$4-18

Clients:

not for solo travelers; those who are not heading to the airport; those traveling at night; for those who want to save or are afraid of flying

How to find the bus stop:

Chong Kov Sou bus station is located several kilometers to the west of the city center

Motorboat from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh

Motorboat from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh
Cost

$40

Wait time

1 day

Travel time

6,5-7,5 h

Clients

Ind.tourist

There is only one motorboat running from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh. A ticket cost is 40 dollars. Travel time is 6-7 hours.
Tickets can be bought at travel agencies or on the pier of Tonle Sap river, not far from Siem Reap. It is better to buy them 1-2 days in advance, otherwise, there will be no free places. Almost no boats follow the timetable and can arrive even 3 hours late. In a dry season, all navigation is ceased.

Motorboat from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh:

Siem Reap - Phnom Penh

Timetable:

07:00-08:00 (departure time varies)

Route:

Siem Reap river pier — Phnom Penh river pier

Travel time:

6,5-7,5 h

Wait time:

up to 1 day

Comfort level:

low: old boat, no seats

Price:

$40

Clients:

those who want to combine a trip to Phnom Penh with an excursion along the biggest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia — Tonle Sap (the eponymous river flows into it), on whose banks floating villages on piles is located

How to get to Siem Reap river pier:

The river pier is 19 kilometers away from the city. It is possible to get there by tuk-tuk or taxi. If you’ve bought a motorboat ticket at a travel agency, a transfer to the pier will be included in the price.

Transfer and taxi from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh

Transfer and taxi from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh
Cost

up to $100

Wait time

5min

Travel time

5h

Clients

Family

By taxi, one can get from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh in 5 hours and approximately for 100 dollars. Besides, you will not have to wait for a suitable transport. You depart at the time you need to. This is the quickest way to get to your destination. It is even faster than plane, taking into account the fact, that there might be only one flight a day.

Timetable:

24h

Route:

to the address in Phnom Penh

Travel time:

5h

Wait time:

taxi: no less than 5 minutes
transfer: arrives at the time specified when booking

Comfort level:

taxi — average: separate space for baggage; trip without stops and other passengers; old cars
transfer — high: guaranteed air conditioning; stops upon request; up to 2 child seats available (even a baby seat for the smallest passengers)

Price:

from 100 dollars

Clients:

families with children or bulky luggage; those who are afraid of flying or late for a flight

How to book a transfer or taxi from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh:

You should book a transfer on the website in advance, and taxi can be booked via online app or by phone.

How to get from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh?

By bus, you will get to Phnom Penh cheaply and rather uncomfortable. One can save money on excursions to floating villages on the river and lake Tonle Sap by buying a ticket on a motorboat to the capital. If you are not limited in budget - chose a plane. But if you are late for a flight, book a taxi or transfer.