6-Day Itinerary: Siem Reap-Phnom Penh-Ho Chi Minh City

Posted on Updated on

Below is our the actual itinerary that we had in our 6nights-6days trip to Cambodia and Vietnam.

Our daily budget (starting Day 1) is 142USD. It was actually more than enough for 2 persons if we’ll only consider the essentials – food, entrance fees, transpo fare. But, of course, who wouldn’t buy some souvenirs, right? Still, I’d say it’s more than enough. 100USD is a safe budget.

Day 0:

  • 2155H touchdown SR
  • 2300H Dinner in a nearby local eatery since Bou Savy only accepts dinner order until 9 or 10pm

– 5.00USD (Dinner)

Day 1:

  • 0500H Met with Mr. Pheak (tuktuk driver) hoping to witness the famous Angkor Wat sunrise.
  • 0730H Back to Bou Savy Guest House for breakfast
  • 0830H Temple Adventure! Some of the temples we went to (or maybe just passed by):
    • Angkor Wat
    • Baksei Chamkrong
    • Baphuon
    • Angkor Thom South Gate
    • Bayon
    • Ta Prohm
    • Terrace of the Elephants
    • Phimeanakas
  • 1400H Lunch at Ta Prohm
  • 1800H around this time we’re back at the hotel and decided that we need to rest our legs after a day full of adventure

– 15.00USD (Tuktuk)
– 40.00USD (20USD/pax 1-Day Temple Tour Pass)
– 30.00USD (15USD/pax elephant ride)
– 6.00USD (Dinner at the hotel)

Day 2: 

  • 1000H Biked around the city. Below are some of the places that we went to
    • Preah Prohm Rath Monastery
    • Old Market
    • Central Market
    • Royal Palace
    • National Museum (we didn’t go inside)
    • Lucky Mall Grocery (because it started raining and this is where we bought Three Corners coffee :))
    • after that we went back to the hotel because our clothes are wet
  • 1700H We just tried our luck if we can still make it to the Cambodian Cultural Village. If we only knew how big and nice the place was, we would have go there at least 2 hours earlier so we don’t have to rush going to each of the spot in the village. Good thing, we were still able to catch the main show that night. CCV is a great place to visit to know SR in a few hours IF you have very limited time. CCV capped off our Siem Reap tour.

– 4.00USD (Bike rental at the hotel, 2USD each)
– 6.00USD (Drinks at BluePumpkin)
– 10.00USD (Lunch at Happy Herb Pizza)
– 30.00USD (Tour at Cambodian Cultural Center – 15USD/pax)
– 6.00USD (Dinner at the hotel)
– XX.XXUSD for souvenirs 🙂

Day 3: 

  • 0700H or 0800H (Can’t remember what time we started) Travel to Phnom Pehn
  • 1430H Arrived at Monsoon Hotel
  • 1530H Tour Royal Palace + sight seeing around the area (there’s a lot to see by the way) and had some food trips
  • 2000H Night Market

– 24USD (12USD/pax Mekong Bus SR to PP)
– 3USD (Tuktuk from bus terminal to Monsoon Hotel)
– 13USD (Entrance to Royal Palace)
– XX.XXUSD (for our food trips and souvenirs)

Day 4: 

  • 0700H Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum
  • 1330H Travel from PP to HCM
  • 2230H Arrived at Aries Hotel

– 17USD (Tuktuk)
– 6USD (3USD/pax Choeung Ek Genocide Museum)
– 14.5USD (Lunch at Lemongrass, Phnom Penh)

Day 5:

  • 0830H Breakfast at Aries Hotel
  • 0930H Bến Thành Market
  • 1300H Fine Arts Museum – Ho Chi Minh City
  • 1420H Highlands Coffee
  • 1630H The General Post Office / The Notre Dame Cathedral
  • 1650H Thảo cầm viên Sài Gòn (Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens)
  • 1720H Bitexo Financial Tower

– 400000.00VND (200K VND/pax Entrance to Bitexo Financial Tower)
– 16000.00 (8K VND/pax Entrance to Saigon Zoo)
– XX.XXUSD (for our food trips and souvenirs)

Day 6: 

  • 0830H Start of Mekong River Tour (We left our luggage in the hotel because we had to early check out as we are going to the tour)
  • 0430H End of Mekong tour
  • 2000H On our way to the Airport for our flight back to MNL

– XX.XXUSD/VND (food, cab fare, souvenirs – sorry i didn’t seem to take notes of our expenses right when we arrived at HCMC)



Best TukTuk Driver: Mr. Pheak

Posted on Updated on

It is my first time to ride/hire a tuktuk, but it was so easy for me to agree to all the reviews I’ve seen in the web about Mr. Pheak that he, indeed, is the best tuktuk driver at least in Siem Reap. I’ve e-mailed at least 3 tuktuk drivers I found in the internet but only Mr. Pheak responded.

Below is the first e-mail I got from him.

On Jul 22, 2013 5:51 AM, “Pheak Ke kum” <> wrote:

Hi dear
Thank you so much for your kindly email !
Do you have your plan please sent to me then I will let you know about the cost .
But if you do not have please look to this tripe
Day 1 stat on 8am to see Angkor wat Angk Tom t Takoa Taphrom temples sunset on Bakeng hill it is 12$ for cost .
Day 2 stat on 5am see sunrise Angkor wat then BonTeaysrey Eastmebon Tasom Neak Pean Phras Kan temples it is 20$ for cost
Day 3 Rolos temple Tonlasb lake it is 15$ .
Hope you are kindly to reply for confirm !
Mr pheak


Then I sent him a list of temples we wanted to see, and learned that it all costs 12USD.

After that, I only e-mailed him a day before our flight. We agreed to his recommendation to start our day at 0500H. And there he was, at 0439H, waiting in front of our hotel.

On Aug 2, 2013 4:39 AM, “Pheak Ke kum” <> wrote:

Now I am at BouSavy guest house


He drove us to Angkor Wat to watch the sunrise, then went back to the hotel for breakfast before we head to our temple tour.

He was so kind to make a quick stop every time we want to take a picture of the places. He also know history very well (which is essential in his type of work).

We didn’t need to bring/buy our own bottled water because surprisingly he brought a whole package of bottled water (probably a dozen of them).

We also tried to invite him for lunch but he refused.

After a long day of temple hopping, we decided to head back to the hotel. On our way, we asked if he can drive us around the city, and he did! We stopped by some shops and drove around.

We thought that with all things we’ve done for the day our cost would be 20USD. So we gave him 20, but then he gave us change. He said that we only need to pay a total of 12USD. To our satisfaction with his service, we gave him 15USD.

We were touched to receive the following e-mail from him after a few days. We actual had some exchange of emails because I still asked him for recommendations on coffee, etc.


On Aug 6, 2013 11:42 AM, “Pheak Ke kum” <> wrote:

Hope you got home safe !
Thank you so much for made me 3 days for my jobs .
I was so glad did become to your driver ! you are very friendly also always made me to your friend not only the driver .
, I hope to get some recommend from you to your friend ! Also if you are able please help me to write your commend on Tripe advisor or Back Packer website !
Great Thank !!

So, if you ever plan on visiting Siem Reap and need someone to help your way around, contact Mr. Pheak.


Hotel Review: Monsoon Hotel

Posted on Updated on


Monsoon Hotel Reception
Monsoon Hotel Reception
Monsoon Hotel Bar/Reception
Monsoon Hotel Bar/Reception
Monsoon Hotel - Deluxe Double
Monsoon Hotel – Deluxe Double
Monsoon Hotel - Deluxe Double - T&B
Monsoon Hotel – Deluxe Double – T&B

Room Type: Deluxe Double (includes breakfast)
Nights: 1
Total / Room Charge: USD 39.00 (PHP 1,594.76)
Booked via Agoda

TIP: I used Facebook (as usual) to communicate with Monsoon Hotel, and Leakhena (one of the owners) is very prompt and friendly in responding to every message I sent which, I really appreciate.

We came from a morning bus ride from SR, and hired a tuktuk from the bus terminal to the hotel. We were welcomed by 2 friendly staffs with all smiles and refreshing drinks.

– Very courteous, attentive, and knows how to communicate well in English. (I hope I was able to meet Leakhena to thank her personally)
— They were the ones who contacted our shuttle service for the bus trip to HCM
– It’s not that cheap (1 night in Monsoon > 2 nights in Bou Savy) but, okay, considering it’s in the capital of Cambodia, I’ll say the price is a bit fair
– Room is neat and clean and I really like the ambiance. The hotel is well maintained.
— The Bed — it’s so comforting that I almost want to take a sleep
— Bathroom: Very clean, and everything looks new. I actually like the design.
– Free fast wi-fi internet connection.

– They only serve breakfast 😦 Luckiy, there’s a lot of restaurants along the street.

I would like to stay longer, but because of the tight schedule, this will definitely be on top of my list if ever I go back to PP.

Hotel Review: Bou Savy Guest House

Posted on Updated on

Room Type: Double Air Conditioning (includes breakfast and unlimited bottled water)

Nights: 2 + 1 (we made two bookings because we had changes in our itinerary)
Total / Room Charge: USD 54.00
1st-2nd nights: USD 36.00 (PHP 1,521.43)
3rd night: USD 18.00 (PHP 780.91)
Booked via Agoda

TIP: I used Facebook to communicate with Bou Savy – I was able to confirm that they will fetch us from the airport via FB. That’s the only question out of a few I asked them that they responded to.

Right when we stepped out of the airport door, we saw 2 men holding Bou Savy signage. When I got closer, I finally saw my name and instantly one of the men approached me and assisted us to the parking area where the TukTuk is waiting. 🙂

– Accessible from the airport and other tourist spots (e.g. Cambodian Cultural Center)
– Very courteous and attentive staffs!
– Very affordable – this is the cheapest out of the 3 hotels we had on this trip
– Room is neat and clean and very spacious just for 2
— Room Type: Double has 2 double sized beds
— Bathroom: Clean and spacious as well (had a hard time locking its door though)
– Free fast wi-fi internet connection. I believe each floor has its own router, so you’re connected everywhere you go in the guest house. 🙂
– Bike Rental (USD 2.00/day)

– Dinner is served until 9pm (or 10pm?) only. – We arrived a bit late so we had to go to a nearby eatery

That’s the only not so positive that I can think of. After all. we got the accommodation that is just right for the price we paid.

SORRY! I was not able to take pictures of our room because I was too tired and hungry to take one (travelling straight from work isn’t the best idea). I’ll just point you to pictures from google that is similar to what we had, like I’ve said what you see in the pictures is what you’ll get: