Locals standing outside the Battambang bat caves

How to Get From Phnom Penh to Battambang and Vice Versa

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Phnom Penh and Battambang are two of the most populated cities in Cambodia, which makes traveling between them easy. However, it’s going to be a long journey. The drive between them is 293 km or 182 miles. You can either take a minibus/van, a private car, or the train. Let’s break down these three transportation options for getting from Phnom Penh to Battambang (and vice versa) so you can book the one that works best for you.

Minibus/van

Travel time: 5 – 7 hours

Cost: $10 – 17 USD

How to book: 12Go.Asia, Camboticket, Bookmebus, or Checkmybus.

Minibuses and vans run nearly every hour between Phnom Penh and Battambang, making it convenient to leave pretty much whenever you want. From Phnom Penh to Battambang, the earliest one departs at 6:30 AM and the last ones head off at 10 PM. Going from Battambang to Phnom Penh, the earliest leaves at 7:30 AM and the last one leaves at 11 PM.

Taking the minibus is the most popular choice, and I recommend this option for most travelers since it balances price with comfort and convenience. You’ll stop at least once along the way, and there’s air conditioning. Some companies will even give you a small bottle of water.

If you travel during the day, you’ll take a minibus or van that seats 16 people. They’re comfortable, although leg room is a bit cramped. If you travel at night, you’ll get on a large sleeper bus that fits 40 people.

Man riding a motorbike on the Kampong Pil suspension bridge in Battambang, Cambodia

Taxi or private car/van

Travel time: 5 hours

Cost: $85+ USD

How to book: 12Go.Asia, Camboticket, Bookmebus, I Am Cambodia Taxi, or Cambodia Taxi Driver.

A taxi or private car that fits four passengers starts at $85 USD, which is double what it costs each person to take a minibus. For such a long drive though, it’s a cheap price and potentially worth it.

If you’re traveling with friends or family, splitting a private car is the most comfortable way of traveling between Battambang and Phnom Penh. You can arrange to be picked up and dropped off at your accommodation, and you can ask the driver to make stops along the way if you want to include some sightseeing.

Train

Travel time: 8 hours and 20 minutes

Cost: $8 USD

How to book: Royal Railway’s booking website, call a Royal Railway branch, or purchase a ticket at the train station.

Royal Railway is the national railway in Cambodia. It’s actually the only railway operator in the country. Traveling by rail in Cambodia is slow and inconvenient, since it’s not a popular travel method. There’s only one train that runs from Phnom Penh to Battambang, leaving at 6:40 AM each day. And there’s one train that runs from Battambang to Phnom Penh, which departs at 3 PM.

Taking the train is a few hours longer than going by minibus, and you’ll only save a few dollars. The tradeoff isn’t worth it to me, so I’d only recommend the train if you’re looking for a slow and scenic journey.

Once you’ve made it to Battambang, there’s plenty to see and do. Check out my list of 16 of the best things to do in Battambang.

How to get from Phnom Penh to Battambang