David G | Mar 21, 2020 | 0
How To Get From Siem Reap To Battambang (and reverse)
Just explored Siem Reap, whether it is the renowned Angkor Wat temple complex, or just the amazing city itself? Battambang is the best destination to hit next on the road! So, how do you get from Siem Reap to Battambang? Well, there are numerous (and cheap!) ways to get from Siem Reap to Battambang, or reverse! From your usual bus or taxi ride to a unique ferry ride on Tonle Sap, we will detail all the transport means on this relation. And last but not least, we will also share our experience of riding from Siem Reap to Battambang with a motorbike!
Without further ado, let’s begin with some specifics on this route!
Getting from Siem Reap to Battambang
The distance between Siem Reap and Battambang is around 165 km. We researched several transport options that you can take from Siem Reap to Battambang or reverse.
First, we have the bus. It is definitely the most convenient option, as it is cheap (around 8 USD for a one-way ticket), and the journey takes between 3 to 4 hours.
Then, we have the taxi. Well, it is certainly a more comfortable and faster experience than the bus and it is ideal if you are traveling in a group. Expect to pay around 50 USD for a one-way trip and to travel around two to two and a half hours.
If you opt for a more unique journey from Siem Reap to Battambang or reverse, don’t hesitate to book a ferry! The ferry will provide a unique experience, as you will discover another side to the local lifestyle of Cambodia. Just keep in mind that the ferry ride won’t be really comfortable and that it will take a while. The ferry trip takes between six to eight hours and costs 25 USD.
Well, without further ado, let’s dive into the different possibilities of getting from Siem Reap to Cambodia (or reverse).
Buses from Siem Reap to Battambang (or reverse)
We have two types of buses operating from Siem Reap to Battambang, the regular and VIP buses (buses and minibusses). The regular buses usually cost around 4 USD. They are 50-seater buses and can be quite uncomfortable, especially if you are very tall. Their journey time is around 4 hours, with toilet and snack break included. For more information on regular buses operating from Siem Reap to Battambang, check local bus stations or with your accommodation for tickets and timetables.
VIP buses (or minibusses) are quicker than regular buses as they don’t stop that often. If you really need a toilet break, you can ask the driver to stop and take a short break. Their price is from 6 USD to 8 USD. Also, VIP buses are 18-seated or 25-seated.
Most bus companies operating from Siem Reap to Battambang (or reverse) will advertise Wi-Fi on their buses. In most cases, the connection is very slow, so you will be better off with mobile data instead!
If you take a bus, it is a bit longer journey, as all buses will pass via Sisophon, so that makes the journey distance of 211 km.
Let’s go into more detail about your options when it comes to buses and minibusses on this relation!
Take care, as there are quite a few shady bus companies that ride on this route. We highly recommend you to book Mekong Express or Capitol Tours if you opt for a bus journey. Let’s talk a bit about Capitol Tours, as we will detail Mekong Express in the Minibus section. Yes, they have regular and VIP buses!
Capitol Tours, with its 42-seater buses, has quite a positive reputation in the public transport market. The journey with this company will take around three hours, and the ticket price is 5,50 USD. One big disadvantage with Capitol Tours is that you cannot book their tickets online, so you will need to go directly to their office to book the tickets. Check out the links below if you are interested in the location of the offices, both in Siem Reap and Battambang.
Also, their offices aren’t exactly near the bus terminals, but thankfully, Capitol Tours has you covered with their free minibus service to the terminals!
Last but not least, here is the schedule of the Capitol Tours buses:
If you want to take a minibus on this relation, then Mekong Express is your go-to company! They are a favorite among travelers as they have a very reliable safety record. Mekong Express runs two buses every day in both directions at 8 AM and 2 PM. They have 18-seated buses and 25 seated buses. 25-seated buses depart at 8 AM from Siem Reap and at 2 PM from Battambang while 18-seated buses depart at all other times (check the Mekong Express bus schedule below to get a better understanding of this).
Other than minibusses, Mekong Express operates regular, 40-seated buses too!
The Mekong Express buses depart in the Siem Reap center, just beside the KFC near the hospital. Their buses arrive in the center of Battambang, near the Psar Nat supermarket. Foreigners can expect to pay around 7 USD for a one-way ticket on this relation. Also, you can book Mekong Express tickets online here!
With Mekong Express, you get a great balance of price and speed, as the trip takes any time between three to four hours. Currently, the roads are pretty rough, especially on the second half of the route to Battambang, as there are roadworks about.
For the end, here is the schedule of the Mekong Express buses:
Taxi from Siem Reap to Battambang (or reverse)
The taxi on this relation is the best option if you want a comfortable ride to Battambang or reverse, with some nice scenery on the route. It is probably the best option if you are traveling in a group.
The taxi vehicle that drives in this direction is usually Toyota Camry, which can fit 4 passengers. We suggest that you travel with less luggage if you are in a group of 3+ people, as the car trunk will be filled most of the time. On the road, you can stop for a toilet or coffee break, and even go sightseeing if you agree with your driver.
The journey on this relation with taxi costs around 50 USD. Make sure to agree on the price and on the location where you want to be dropped off before the ride itself!
Where can you hire a taxi for this relation? First of all, you can check around your accommodation, or ask a travel agent. The most convenient way is to book a taxi online via BookMeBus, or Camboticket.
When you book via BookMeBus, you can book a van which is the most comfortable taxi ride you can get on this relation. It costs 90 USD, and you will essentially get into a van with 11 seats.
If you book online via Camboticket, you can hire a taxi for 55 USD, which is also a bit more comfortable than your usual Toyota Camry taxi.
The taxi ride from Siem Reap to Battambang (or reverse) will take around two to two and a half hours, depending on the road conditions, weather conditions, traffic, and how many breaks you take. One thing is certain – you can expect a very comfortable ride!
Boat from Siem Reap to Battambang (or reverse)
You can take a ferry from Siem Reap to Battambang or reverse, with boats departing as early as 7.30 AM. For specific departure times, check with your accommodation to get a better insight.
The boat journey will take you any time between six to eight hours. That depends on the water levels and on the weather season. You see, during the dry season (between April and June), the water levels in Tonle Sap lake are too low for a ferry ride. The best time to take a boat ride on this relation is during the wet season (from July to March), as the water levels in Tonle Sap will be enough for a boat ride.
The route you will take between Siem Reap and Battambang or reverse is the following: Phnom Krom Port – Siem Reap River – Tonle Sap Lake – Sangker River – Battambang
Why should you take a ferry from Siem Reap to Battambang? Well, for starters, this is a nice way of getting to Battambang or reverse if you really want to get a feel of local culture. You will sail on Tonle Sap, which means through many floating fishing villages. This could result in a very distinct experience in this region.
Keep in mind that the boats aren’t the safest transportation option! All the ferries that take this route are local-made, wooden boats, that aren’t the most comfortable. It tends to be quite hot and you can hear the engine of the boat at all times. If you can sit through all that, you will be rewarded with an off the beaten track route without tourist crowds.
We can’t stress this enough, but if you want to avoid getting sunburned, make sure to bring sunscreen! With that, you should take some rain protection gear, as it tends to rain often in this part of Cambodia. You can buy raincoats for 2,000 Cambodian Riel (around 0,50 USD) at almost any small streetside shop.
The boat tickets cost 25 USD in either direction for one person. You can book tickets on the same day of the journey at the port. At some rare occasions, you can book a ferry ticket online here.
If you want an elite experience, it is possible to book the whole boat for 180 USD!
The ferry from Siem Reap departs from Phnom Krom Port. To get there, hop on a tik-tuk for around 5 USD that can take you directly to Phnom Krom!
What to say else other than to enjoy the ferry ride on the majestic Tonle Sap!
Siem Reap to Battambang with Motorbike
Last but not least, we want to share with you our experience of the route from Siem Reap to Battambang, which we conquered with motorbikes. To be more specific, 3 Yamaha automatic bikes, and one Honda Wave – with tons of luggage on every bike. The journey took us 5 hours, with lots of breaks in between, changing from early afternoon, to the darkness of the night.
Here is the route that we took:
On the first half of the route, we are following Route 6 from Siem Reap to Sisophon, where we connect to the harrowing Route 5 and continue on to Battambang. There is a 104 km distance from Siem Reap to Sisophon and 69 km distance from Sisophon to Battambang.
The beginning section of Route 6 after leaving Siem Reap is full of potholes, and loads of trucks and cars that force you to hug the far right side of the road. As we traveled around Cambodia during the wet season, we were met with lots of sunshine and lots of random showers that force you to put on the raincoats and ride further.
There are some amazing curvy sections on Route 6 with amazing scenery. Mostly, you will see green paddies, limestone hills, and pagodas in the distance.
Further down Route 6, Antonio had problems with his exhaust on Honda Wave. We were lucky to find a mechanic besides the road who fixed this problem for the short term period. It was a lovely, friendly bunch for sure!
After fixing the exhaust on the Honda Wave, we blazed through the villages to Sisophon. Then, we hit the harrowing Route 5 to Battambang, unaware of the road works that awaited us further down the road. This road was crazy at the time of the ride. Unpaved? Check. Road holes? Check. Massively aggressive truck drivers? Check.
Everything was down on the board, and we continued through this chaos. We had a lot of near-misses with the trucks, as the driveable unpaved section of the road was very narrow for both bikes and trucks together on one lane. Also, lots of dust was produced by speedy truck drivers, and the visibility was poor.
At one point, David got stung by a wasp in the arm, which forced us to take a small break near the sticky rice (called Kralan in Cambodia) stall. Kralan is a delicious snack served in bamboo sticks that is prevalent around Southeast Asia.
After devouring a few Kralan portions, the nighttime came with its challenges. During the nighttime, the visibility falters, as it is really rare to see light other than our bike headlights and an occasional truck driver.
After riding for a while, we finally got to Battambang. It was an exhilarating and challenging ride to be certain! We love rewarding rides like these! This is what makes us so in love with motorbike trips around this amazing part of our world.
If you want to see how this journey looks like in motion, here is a video that we recorded on this route!
Now that you know how to get from Siem Reap to Battambang (or reverse), we invite you to explore these two amazing locales. Of course, Siem Reap is world-famous for the Angkor Wat temple complex, but there is a certain charm to the city itself. And not to forget, the ride to Tonle Sap lake is absolutely breathtaking, and you definitely shouldn’t miss that!
Battambang is a more tranquil place than Siem Reap and a very vibey city. Here is a day trip from Battambang that you shouldn’t miss while being there!
We wish you a happy journey and hope you found all the required information in this post! If you have any questions or want to add something to this post, don’t hesitate to contribute to the comment section! 🙂