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most beautiful places to visit in Cambodia and things to do there itinerary backpacking travel guide Asia

Trying to pick where to visit during your Cambodia trip? Make sure these 5 beautiful places in Cambodia are on your itinerary!

Home to charming towns, beautiful nature and welcoming locals; there’s a reason Cambodia is a favourite on the South East Asia backpacking trails. Whether you want to dive into ancient history, soak up the sun on a tropical beach, or explore the culture and charm of riverside towns, there’s a place to visit in Cambodia for you! This guide shares 5 places we fell in love with in Cambodia, and I’m sure you’ll love them too!

most beautiful places to visit in Cambodia and things to do there itinerary backpacking travel guide Asia tips

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➡️ Must visit places in Cambodia

1️⃣ Kampot
2️⃣ Koh Rong
3️⃣ Kep
4️⃣ Angkor Wat
5️⃣ Battambang

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, all marked with * Booking through these links generates a small commission for me at no extra cost to you.

Beautiful Places to Visit in Cambodia

Whether you’re looking to unwind or have an unforgettable adventure, there’s somewhere in Cambodia for you! The country is bursting with culture, nature, and history, so it’s not surprising that the best places to visit in Cambodia encompass these facets of the country.

In no particular order, these are my picks for the most beautiful places to visit in Cambodia. Add them to your Cambodia itinerary!

1️⃣ Kampot

I had no expectations of Kampot, but it fast became one of my favourite places in Cambodia! Surrounded by mountains and lush countryside, Kampot embraces the slow pace of river life. The town has a rustic charm, with old colonial buildings lining its streets, and jungle resorts lining the river.

If you’re looking to escape the hustle and bustle of Cambodian cities, Kampot is a great place to go!

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What to do in Kampot:

First up, I recommend staying near the riverside to soak up the slow pace of life here and make the most out of the lush jungles. We stayed at Eden Ecovillage* and it was the perfect spot to recharge in nature. You can read more about the experience here.

With the river giving life to Kampot, it’s unsurprising that many of the best things to do in Kampot evolve around the water. From kayaking and waterparks to sunset boat cruises there is a way for everyone to experience the peaceful river life in Kampot. If you love cooking, be sure to visit La Plantation for their free tour and to sample the world-famous pepper from Kampot.

✍️ Top 10 Things to do in Kampot

2️⃣ Koh Rong

If you’re looking for a paradise island to include on your travels in South East Asia, Koh Rong is the one. The powdery white sand beaches, crystal clear waters and lush jungle, combined with the small island vibe, is a match made in heaven. It’s the perfect place to unwind during your travels in Cambodia, with a healthy mix of adventure and relaxation.

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Things to do on Koh Rong:

Unsurprisingly, Koh Rong is the perfect place to soak up tropical beaches. Yet there are lots of things to do on the island such as kayaking through mangroves, hiking to waterfalls and snorkelling tours where you can swim with bioluminescent plankton.

For the convenience of eating out and things to do, I recommend staying nearby Kaoh Touch beach or the bottom of Long Set beach. Nest Beach Club* is the place to stay if you’re a social backpacker!

✍️ 10 Things to do on Koh Rong

3️⃣ Kep

While we only spent 1 day in Kep, this quiet Cambodian beach town stole my heart. In the 1950s and 60s, Kep was the place to be in Cambodia; home to opulent colonial mansions, and beach clubs for the elite to relax. While the glitz and glamour of this era are in the past, Kep retains its beautiful beachfront and is renowned for fresh seafood.

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How to the day in Kep:

Despite its small size, there are lots of things to do in Kep. Be sure to try the fresh seafood at the Crab Market, take a hike in the national park and cool off in the ocean at Kep Beach.

We visited Kep as a day trip from Kampot, which is a great alternative if you don’t want to cram too many places into your itinerary. It’s only a 30-minute drive from Kampot to Kep so just rent a motorbike or hire a driver (see details in the guide below) to take you around for the day!

✍️ A Day Trip from Kampot to Kep

4️⃣ Angkor Wat

The iconic temples of Angkor are one of the most anticipated places to visit for travellers in Cambodia, and for good reason! Spanning hundreds of kilometres, the temples of Angkor make up the largest religious site in the world, and boy is it beautiful. Siem Reap, the gateway city to visit Angkor Wat, is a must-add to your Cambodia itinerary!

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Temples to see in Siem Reap:

While Angkor Wat is undoubtedly the most well-known temple in Cambodia, there are many other unique temples to check out. My favourites can be seen on the small circuit tour of Angkor Park, which includes Bayon, Ta Phrom and the gates into the ancient city of Angkor Thom.

If you love history, I recommend getting a 3-day Angkor Pass so you can explore more of the ancient temples outside Siem Reap.

✍️ 3 Day Itinerary for Siem Reap and Angkor Wat
✍️ 5 Tips for Visiting Angkor Wat

5️⃣ Battambang

Now, as a city, Battambang is not the most aesthetically beautiful, but the charm of the most welcoming locals in Cambodia won our hearts. Despite being one of the largest cities in Cambodia, Battambang has small-town charm with some remnants of the colonial period and lots of countryside surrounding it.

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What to do in Battambang:

The most popular site to see in Battambang is the historic bamboo train, which has become something of a right of passage for travellers in Cambodia. Be sure to visit Phnom Sampov, a mountain outside of Battambang where you can witness millions of bats fly out of their cave at dusk, a rare natural phenomenon.

While in Battambang, join a tour of the countryside with Kim Tours. Mr Kim took us through villages and helped us to interact with locals, try traditional food and get an insight into Cambodian culture.

✍️ How to Spend 1 Day in Battambang

When planning your Cambodia itinerary be sure to include these 5 beautiful places for a dose of nature, history and relaxation on your trip!

Pin these places to visit in Cambodia!

most beautiful places to visit in Cambodia and things to do there itinerary backpacking travel guide Asia
most beautiful places to visit in Cambodia and things to do there itinerary backpacking travel guide Asia

Planning a Trip to Cambodia?

For more information on planning a trip to Cambodia, including detailed guides to all these beautiful places, be sure to check out my Complete Cambodia Travel Guide which includes everything you need to know for travelling around the country.

✍️ Cambodia Itinerary for 1 to 3 Weeks (coming soon)
✍️ How to Visit Cambodia as a Tourist in 2022
✍️ The Cost of Travelling Cambodia on a Budget

Meet Frances; Scottish lass turned Vietnam expat, and creator of this space. She can be found sippin’ ice tea’s and writing about her adventures from her sunny base of Saigon, Vietnam’s southern metropolis. All with a healthy side of researching her next road trip. With 5 years of living, travelling and scooting around Asia under her belt – let Frances be your guide to travelling the region.

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