5 accommodation options for visiting cambodia
Cambodia is a country that many travelers want to visit, but few can actually afford. Accommodation costs in Cambodia are among the highest in Southeast Asia. And unlike Thailand or Vietnam, where boutique hotels are abundant (and affordable), quality budget accommodation options in Cambodia tend to be few and far between. Curious about what you can expect to find when visiting this dynamic country? Here’s an insider's guide to the different types of accommodations available in Cambodia, and what each one will cost you.
Guest houses and hotels
Even though guesthouses and hotels are very similar in concept, they are often very different in quality, service, and price. Guesthouses are often family-run, and offer a more local feel to visitors. The rooms are generally small, the service can be inconsistent, and some of the buildings and communal areas may be in serious need of a makeover.
The hotels in Cambodia tend to be more expensive than their equivalent in other Southeast Asian countries, and are often overpriced for the quality. If you’re looking to stay in a mid-range hotel, you’ll be paying around $50-$80 per night in a Cambodian city like Phnom Penh, and $25-$80 elsewhere in the country. Hotels in Siem Reap, being one of the most popular destinations on the Cambodian tourism trail, tend to be more expensive than elsewhere in the country. Top-end hotels are very rare in Cambodia, and only found in the capital Phnom Penh. You can expect to pay around $80-$100 per night for a top-end hotel room in Phnom Penh.
Boutique hotels and resorts
Boutique hotels are becoming increasingly common in Cambodia, offering a higher standard of accommodation than most budget and mid-range hotels. The majority of boutique hotels in Cambodia are concentrated in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, with more being built in the provinces every year. Boutique hotels offer a stylish and luxurious service, often at a price most backpackers cannot afford.
Boutique hotels in Cambodia are the most expensive in Southeast Asia, and often charge $100-$200 per night. Resorts in Cambodia are usually on the beach, and are often occupied by couples looking for an all-inclusive holiday.
Hostels in Cambodia are almost exclusively aimed towards backpackers, and offer a cheap, sociable stay for those on a budget. Hostels in Cambodia are often in a state of disrepair, with very few of them being up to an acceptable standard. The hostels in Cambodia are very much a work in progress, and the situation will likely improve as the years tick by. Until then, the hostels in Cambodia are a far cry from their equivalents in Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia.
Cambodia offers some amazing camping opportunities, particularly in the south of the country. The islands in the Koh Thons are a nature-lover’s paradise, and feature some of the best river and ocean kayaking in the world. The coastal town of Koh Sdach near the border with Vietnam is another popular destination for those traveling by land. The cost of camping in Cambodia varies depending on your chosen destination. Camping on the Koh Thons is highly recommended, but can be expensive. Camping in Koh Sdach is considerably cheaper, and an amazing way to experience the Cambodian countryside.
Some people may be surprised to see the inclusion of guesthouse-hotel combos on this list. But many of Cambodia’s budget hotels are actually guesthouses that operate as hotels. The number of guesthouse-hotels is growing, and they are a great option for backpackers looking to save some money. Guesthouse-hotels are usually extremely cheap and come with all the services of a normal hotel. You can expect to pay $5-$20 per night for a guesthouse-hotel, depending on the standard of the room. Guesthouse-hotels are an excellent option for budget travelers interested in meeting other backpackers and living like a local.
Air Bnb is the ultimate way to stay in Cambodia on a budget. As long as you stay in one of the many houses and apartments available on the site, Air Bnb can be just as affordable as staying in a guesthouse-hotel. Air Bnb is a fantastic way to enjoy a more local, luxurious stay while visiting Cambodia on a budget. While it’s unlikely you will be able to stay in a house as nice as the ones featured on the site, staying in one of the cheaper apartments can be just as enjoyable. Air Bnb can be an excellent choice for families and couples, as it’s usually much cheaper than staying in a hotel.
Condominium rooms and apartments
Cambodia is a booming real estate market, with condo developments popping up all around the country. It’s easy to stay in a condo when visiting Cambodia, as long as you’re willing to look for a deal on Booking.com. There are plenty of cheap condo rooms and apartments available in Cambodia, and they are a great option for those on a budget. It’s often possible to find condo rooms for as little as $10 per night, with some offering amazing views of the Mekong River. The only downside to staying in a condo room or apartment is that you probably won’t be able to meet travelers from other countries. Condo rooms are generally occupied by Cambodians, so if you’re looking to meet other travelers you’d be better off in a guesthouse-hotel.