Solo Backpacking Cambodia – Part 1: Preparation

It’s been a long time since I updated this blog. Due to the pile of works, finishing my master study, and current job (err actually it is because of my laziness, though :p). Lately I’ve been hooked on traveling, so I’ll post several of my old backpacking stories.

I went to Cambodia in December 2014. My paper accepted in APSIPA 2014 Conference, held in Siem Reap, Cambodia at 9-12 Dec 2014. I asked my Professor to go earlier for a tour and she allowed me to *yeeey*. So I prepare my journey a month before. Since I had plenty of time, I decided to visit its capital city, Phnom Penh before heading to Siem Reap. Here’s my list:

  1. Book flight tickets
  2. Plan itinerary
  3. Book hotel/hostel
  4. Book tuktuk driver

Flight Ticket

My lab paid for the flight tickets and hotel during the conference, so I am not going to tell you how to find a cheap flight tickets. I just find the flight that match with my itinerary, under the budget, of course x))


I was planning to spent a week in Cambodia from 6-14 Dec 2014. Exploring Phnom Penh first then heading to Siem Reap. I use “Trip It”, an android apps to help me save the itinerary. Here is my planned itinerary:



There are many cheap hotel/hostel in Cambodia. Just browse it in here, here, here or stumbled upon some traveler’s blog to find recommendation. Before my departure, I book accommodation in Siem Reap. During the conference, I stay at Bou Savy Guesthouse. I chose it because it is only 5 minutes walk from the conference venue, which is held in Sokha Angkor Resort (this 5 star hotel is nice, stay here if you got the money! x) )

Bou Savy is nice, I book for single bed, AC, with private bathroom, but they upgraded me to twin bed, AC, also with private bathroom *happy*. The breakfast is included in the package, and the menu is varied, from a simple baguette (with jam/egg)  to the traditional rice noodle dish. Since I wanted to taste its traditional food, I ordered the vegetable rice noodle dish, but the waiter said I couldn’t eat the dish since I am Moslem. You shouldn’t be afraid to go to Cambodia if you’re Moslem, there are Moslem community in Cambodia, so they’re familiar with Moslem rules, this country is Moslem friendly 😀

After the conference was over, I decided to move to the cheaper hotel near the night market, Mandalay Inn Hotel. The hotel was okay, $7 for single room AC with private bathroom, no breakfast included.

Tuktuk Driver

This is important. Since I traveled alone and in Cambodia the public transportation is confusing me, I booked tuktuk to drove me around the city. I looked someone who could speak English or Indonesian. In Phnom Penh, I book Nasim, a Moslem driver, ever worked in Malaysia, so he could speak English and Melayu (contact me if you need his number), while in Siem Reap, I book another Moslem driver, Salim. He also could speak English and Melayu.


So the preparation was done, and I was ready to go on board!

… to be continued to Part 2



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