Battambang province lies in the far western region of Cambodia; it’s bounded to the west by Thailand, the south by the Cardamom mountains, the east by Tonle Sap lake and Pursat, and to the north by Banteay Meanchey province. With a rich architectural heritage, an increasingly confident art scene providing a cradle for many of Cambodia’s top talents, and stunning surrounding countryside, Battambang is a tranquil respite from the boom and hustle of Phnom Penh and Siem Reap.
There’s something about Battambang that visitors just love. Forget the fact that there’s really not all that much to do in the city proper: the colonial architecture teetering into genteel disrepair, the riverside setting, the laidback cafes – they all make up for it. It’s the perfect blend of relatively urban modernity and small-town friendliness.
Outside the city’s confines, meanwhile, timeless hilltop temples and bucolic villages await. Not to mention the most scenic river trip in the country, which links Battambang with Siem Reap.