Battambang is about 180 miles (290 kilometers) away from Phnom Penh, a distance that can take you anywhere by traveling between four to seven hours, depending on how you choose to go, flooding and traffic. It is about 291km via the national road number 5 from Phnom Penh to Battambang.
It is easy enough to visit all the bus companies in Battambang located a few blocks north of Psar Nath, to book yourself. Alternatively, you can have hotels and guesthouses book it for you, however, normally, they will add an extra couple bucks to the price. Indochina holidays Cambodia
The best option of the big buses is Capitol Tours. Do not be fooled by the website saying you can get there in five. The trip takes between six and seven hours and the ticket costs 24,000 riel ($6). For the duration of the ride, you will be treated to Cambodia karaoke videos and there will be frequent stops to let people on and off the bus.
Even though the Battambang bus station was recently moved just outside of town along the National Road 5, they will take you to the station if you arrive at the Capitol office twenty minutes before your bus. The buses in Phnom Penh leave and arrive from Capitol Guesthouse near Orussey Market.
Capitol Tours schedule:
Phnom Penh to Battambang: 7 a.m., 8 a.m., 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1 p.m., 2:15 p.m., 2:45 p.m., 4 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
If you book at a hotel or a guesthouse in Battambang, mini-buses offer complimentary pick-up. To get to Phnom Penh, they take from 4 to 5 hours make a short stop for a meal in Pursat, and occasionally another stop to refuel or for a brief bathroom break.
No matter what mini-bus you take, as there are some rough spots on the highway where the ride in the back of the bus is quite bumpy, ensure to book a seat closer to the front of the bus rather than further back. As you enter Battambang, before crossing the bridge to the west side, where the bus company offices are, there is usually one stop on the east side of the river. As you enter Phnom Penh, there may be a few stops to allow some Cambodian people to get off on the side of the road.
At around $10, Mekong Express is the most expensive but also the highest quality mini-bus option. Mekong Express offers the most leg space, so if feeling cramped by other options, tall people should consider. Note that for the duration of the trip, they will play karaoke videos.
In Phnom Penh, Mekong Express drops you off at its office not far from Orussey Market making is convenient to avoid the worst of Phnom Penh’s traffic. However, it will still be a bit of a tuk tuk ride to get to your guesthouse if it is somewhere close to the river.
Usually leaving on time, Golden Bayon Express charges $10 per person (sometimes you can get that down to $9 at a travel agent on Riverside in Phnom Penh, but it always seems to be $10 when booking in Battambang). Despite not being as spacious as Mekong Express mini-buses, Golden Bayon Express buses are clean and relatively comfortable. Their buses also feature free WiFi that sometimes works, but does not for most of the time.
A private taxi takes about four hours and costs around $60. It is not difficult to hire a private taxi through a guesthouse or hotel. Keep in mind that as the driver may be transporting something to Phnom Penh, the trunk may not be empty. Toyota Camrys that can seat four passengers, but can be a tight squeeze are popular taxi option.
Departing from northwest of Boeung Chhouk market, on National Road 5, share taxis usually cost $10 per seat. Note that if you want to have that seat to yourself, you will probably have to pay $20 as the front seat beside the driver is considered two seats.
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