The gritty streets of Phnom Penh reflect the scars of history and foreshadow prospects for the future.
Although thirty years have passed since the brutal reign of the Khmer Rouge, Cambodia is still recovering and the evidence is all around. Dilapidated, grungy buildings hover over you from either side, while street children approach you from all directions imploring you to buy bracelets, post cards, and pirated travel guidebooks. At the same time, posh storefronts boasting internationally renowned brands and new construction sites are everywhere. It is an eerie marriage of both poverty and opportunity; past and future; stagnation and growth.
Horns honk. Exhaust pipes sputter. People chatter endlessly in a cacaphone of languages.
The best way to get a feel for the paradox of all that is Phnom Penh is from the seat of a Tuk Tuk, the preferred method of transportation in Cambodia. Sure, there are cars, there are buses, but if you’re looking for an authentic Southeast Asian experience, hitch a ride in a Tuk Tuk. A tuk tuk is an open-air taxi, essentially a carriage hooked up to the back of a motorbike. Travelers with heavy bags or multiple members in a group will find the tuk tuk to be the easiest way to navigate the city. For solo travelers with small backpacks, it’s easier to hitch a ride on the back of a motor bike. Both options abound on nearly every street corner, especially in areas frequented by tourists.
We found the Tuk Tuk to be an exciting way to take in the sights, sounds, and smells of the streets and alleyways of Phnom Penh. But don’t take our word for it: Hop on in and experience the thrill for yourself!
Sit back, relax, and watch the streets of Phnom Penh pass you by!
We hope you enjoyed the ride!
Our stay in Phnom Penh was courtesy of AsiaRooms.com. All opinions expressed are our own.