The Ultimate 10 Day Cambodia Itinerary

Last Updated 09/02/2024 | 9th February, 2024

Cambodia is a stunning country packed with exciting cities, beautiful beaches, and exceptional food. It’s also very affordable, making it somewhat of a backpacker heaven

While you could easily cram more into your 10 day Cambodia itinerary, three locations is the ideal amount for your first visit to the country. I’ve included some ‘bonus days’ towards the end of the article in case you have a little extra time in this fantastic country.

10 day Cambodia itinerary
10 day Cambodia itinerary

Phnom Penh: Days 1 – 2

Your 10 day Cambodia adventure starts in the crazy capital city of Phnom Penh. The international airport is just a fifteen-minute drive from the city centre. 

Alternatively, if you’re travelling as part of a bigger Southeast Asian adventure, there are tonnes of buses arriving from Vietnam each day. 

Day One – Get Acquainted 

The first day in every country should be reserved for finding your bearings. Packing too many activities into one day can be exhausting and overwhelming. 

Arriving in Cambodia can be a big culture shock. It is an extremely poor country, and the devastation caused by its recent and highly traumatic history is present everywhere. 

I recommend spending a few hours wandering around, getting accustomed to the way of life. Also, take some time to understand the money. Cambodian Riel and American Dollars are both used, and if you’re not familiar with using two currencies at once this can first be a little confusing. 

While exploring the city, stroll along the waterfront and admire the Royal Palace. If you’re in the mood for a spot of shopping, you should also check out the central market. 

Day Two – Killing Fields & S21 Museum

Day two in Cambodia is focused on learning about the harrowing history of the country.

You should visit the Killing Fields and the S21 Museum, which can be explored in one day if you hire a driver. When visiting these sights, it is essential that you hire audio guides.

These audio guides are recorded by survivors of the awful atrocities in Cambodia, making the trip even more poignant.

Cambodia in 10 days

Where To Stay in Phnom Penh (10 Day Cambodia Itinerary)

Budget Options in Phnom Penh 

🛏 Vacation Boutique Hotel

🛏 House Boutique Eco Hotel

Higher-End Options in Phnom Penh 

🛏 Plantation Urban Resort & Spa

🛏 AMATA Residence

How to Get From Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville

The journey from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville takes around six hours. We did this via minibus and it was relatively painless and efficient. 

If you’re time-poor and cash-rich, you could fly between the two, saving you a significant amount of time.

Days 3 – 6: Sihanoukville & Otres Beach

If there is one thing about me, I will add a visit to the coast on every overseas trip. And, this 10-day Cambodia itinerary is no different!

🛺 I got scammed by a tuk-tuk driver (and later found out this is a popular technique!). They dropped us down a dirt track, stating that our hostel was just around the corner (100m to be specific). This turned out to be just over 1km away, so I recommend having maps ready and available on your phone to check. 

I didn’t love Sihanoukville. There didn’t seem to be any Cambodian culture there, and the majority of bars, hotels, and restaurants are owned by Brits, Americans, and Australians. With only 10 days in Cambodia, it felt like a waste to spend time there.

However, moving a little further along, down to Otres Beach, is truly beautiful.

There are some fabulous beach huts you can stay in for as little as a few dollars a night. There are also plenty of bars and restaurants to keep you entertained for a few days, and you can take boat trips out for the day to the surrounding islands.

Otres Beach

Where To Stay in Sihanoukville & Otres Beach (10 Day Cambodia Itinerary)

Budget Options

🛏 Om Home

🛏 Onederz Sihanoukville

Higher-End Options 

🛏 Naiya Sea Resort

🛏 Sunbird Garden Resort

How to Get From Sihanoukville to Siem Reap

There are two main options when travelling between Sihanoukville and Siem Reap. 

✈ The first is to fly. This flight is relatively infrequent and therefore expensive, considering it is a direct, one-hour flight. Due to the limited numbers, be sure to book this flight well in advance.

🚌 If you’re a budget traveller, the bus will be the best option. I took the twelve-hour sleeper bus, which was as enjoyable as it sounds. Although very long and very cramped, the bus did arrive precisely on time, which was a pleasant surprise. 

Cambodia in 10 days

Days 7 – 10: Siem Reap

You simply cannot come to Cambodia without visiting the incredible Angkor Wat. 

I thoroughly recommend the three-day pass, which allows you to explore the area in great detail. The three days in Angkor Wat will get very hot and sweaty, so I recommend dedicating the evening to unwinding! 

You could test out your bartering skills at one of the many markets. Of course, as tacky as you think it is, you can’t leave without having a drink or two on pub street. 

If you would prefer to relax in the evening, you should check out one of the many massage spots around the city or perhaps treat yourself to a fish foot spa.

Where To Stay in Siem Reap (10 Day Cambodia Itinerary)

Budget Options

🛏 Eco-Home Siem Reap Hostel 

🛏 Mad Monkey Hostel

Higher-End Options 

🛏 Eightfold Urban Resort

🛏 Mane Village Suites

Bonus Days – Backpacking in Cambodia 

If you’ve got a little more flexibility within your Cambodia travel route, there are two other popular backpacking destinations that you might want to check out. 

Battambang

Battambang is about a three-hour drive from Siem Reap, so it sits perfectly between the beach and Angkor Wat in this Cambodia itinerary. 

Alternatively, if you plan to travel to Thailand overland afterwards, you should pitstop in Battambang after Siem Reap. 

Battambang is a great spot if you’re keen to learn more about Cambodia’s deep history. Here, you can visit the poignant Killing Cave, which is a Khmer Rouge execution site. This site is deeply upsetting but a reminder of the horrendous atrocities that occurred relatively recently. 

One of the most popular tourist attractions in Battambang is the iconic Bamboo Train, which offers unbeatable views of the Cambodian countryside. 

Koh Rong

Koh Rong sits just off the south coast of Cambodia, and it is a very popular location with backpackers.

In the Cambodia itinerary mentioned above, Koh Rong sits perfectly after you visit Sihanoukville before you begin the journey up north. 

The ferry from Sihanoukville to Koh Rong takes between 45 minutes and one hour, depending on the weather conditions. 

Koh Rong is a laid-back island, so don’t expect your days here to be jam-packed with activities. Instead, soak in the sunshine, relax in the beautiful waters, and hike in the fantastic nature. 

Koh Rong also has a very famous nightlife scene with all-night parties on the beach. If this is your kind of vibe, do not miss Koh Rong from your itinerary for Cambodia.

MORE CAMBODIA INSPIRATION:

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