Phnom Penh Travel Blog› entry 23 of 62 › view all entries
Many of the bus lines to Phnom Penh go directly to their own hotels or guesthouses which are often in remote backstreets and isolated from would-be competitors. When I learned that the G.S.T. bus-line dropped passengers near the central market, I selected the 12:30 mid-day bus. Seat 31 was fairly roomy with 6 inches more legroom than a commercial airliner; plenty of room for my day pack and shoulder bag at my feet in front of me. Though I never lost one, I dreaded my baggage riding in the belly compartment of a bus - it just seemed too easy for it to vanish. Fortunately, being a 'carry-on' guy applies to busses as well as airplanes. My spacious seat was short-lived however when a tall Swede clumsily plopped into 32 and the four hour ride seemed like eight.
A German friend in Sihanoukville told me of the Penh Cheth, a hotel located between the large domed market and the river.
I walked a few blocks to reach the riverfront and gathered my bearings at the corner where the Hope and Anchor bar sat. I bought a T-shirt there earlier this year for an unemployed friend in Michigan who worked on the iron ore boats on the Great Lakes. I continued left to the Green Vespa to treat myself to my favorite meal in Cambodia: two grilled pork chops, potatoes, apple sauce, tossed salad, and steamed carrots, cauliflower, and green beans - all for $5.50. The Green Vespa was voted the 2006 number one bar in Phnom Penh and is well worth a visit.
I walked the length of the downtown riverfront, experimented with digital night photography, and enjoyed a few sidewalk beers. Phnom Penh seems to have more cars than motorbikes. Many of the foreign passersby seemed older than the younger travelers frequenting the coastal areas of Thailand and Cambodia.