Advantages Quiet, provincial town - you get left alone!
Disadvantages A bit too quiet, maybe?
Battambang is considered to be off the beaten track by many backpackers in Cambodia. It serves as a go-between if you wish to take a more scenic, river route from Angkhor into Phnomh Penh. Even though it is the second city of Cambodia, it is not a large town, and has not much appeal to all but the more hardy tourist.
I came into Battambang on a riverboat, and was quite refreshed not to be met by a posse of scooter riders at the 'dock' (which consisted of a muddy bank!).
The town itself is very quiet and not very large - pretty much, you can see everything within a couple of days - there's a nice hill temple, plus a small killing field. There is little of note to see in town, except for the older part of town, containing the old colonial-style architecture, but it was enjoyable just because I was left alone by the locals - they appeared not to be used to seeing tourists around.
There are a couple of night clubs, both with live bands playing 80's style music in spangly suits the night I was there - but don't drink the ice they serve with the beer! My stomach did not calm down for weeks after that...but then you should know not to do that already....right?
And other than that, there were a couple of large markets to walk around, and some very nice, although very small restaurants.
And although it is not recommended by the tourist guides, I took the train into Phnomh Penh - and thoroughly enjoyed it: e leisurely, 10-hour ride that could only happen in Cambodia! People riding on the roof, people offering me live beetles to eat, sitting with my feet dangling out of the side of the freight car because this was more comfortable than the passenger cars....*sigh*
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