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Cambodia Travel Blog: Phnom Penh Nightlife and What to Do

Posted by: Ms.Alex on 2015-08-20 11:49:09

Phnom Penh Nightlife, Cambodia

Ever since the arrival of UNTAC (UN Transitional Authority in Cambodia) and the NGOs in 1992, Phnom Penh’s nightlife has been developing. While it may not yet rival that of Bangkok, it does have a vibrant, dusk-till-dawn nightlife. It is quite a good party town, and offers a variety of places to choose from, including hostess bars, dance clubs, sports bars, pubs, karaoke bars, discos, and much more. There are nightlife venues in many parts of town, but the city is not so big or spread out, so it is easy to get from one area to another by tuk-tuk or moto (the safest way to get around).

There are several areas in Phnom Penh where bars and nightlife venues are concentrated. The riverfront – A large number of bars and restaurants along Sisowath Quay, and on the side streets next the riverfront. Street 104 & Street 102 – many hostess bars. Street 136 (one block from Sisowath Quay) – Many hostess bars. Street 51 (between Street 154 and Street 174) – The famous Heart of Darkness, Walkabout, Shanghai, and many more venues are located here. See below for a sample of nightlife venues in Phnom Penh.

Cadillac Bar and Grill

Cadillac Bar and Grill in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Is it a bar? Is it a restaurant? Actually, it is both venues in one place, with a really great atmosphere, tasty and laid back music from the 60s, a full bar, and an extensive menu of superb cuisine. For libations, there are cocktails, ciders, mojitos, Russians, a good selection of beers, and more. Just some of what the homemade menu has to offer: Texas chili, pot pie, meat loaf, gumbo, chicken parmesan, roast beef, lasagna, pizza, burgers, and a whole lot more. All day breakfast. • Opening Hours: From 07:00 to midnight. • Location: #219E Sisowath Quay.

• Tel: +855-11-713567.

California 2 Café and Guesthouse

California 2 Café and Guesthouse in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Established in 1994, the California 2 has long been a meeting place for travelers and expats alike, and was a good place for information exchange. Even though there are now many such places in Phnom Penh, it is still a popular gathering place. The guesthouse has 10 rooms. • Opening Hours: 24 hours. • Location: No. 79 Sisowath Quay.

• Tel: +855-77-503144.

Candy Bar

Candy Bar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

With over 100 beautiful hostesses, this has got to be one of the best 24-hour bars in Phnom Penh. The music is mostly hip-hop and rock, but at a conversation volume level. Saturday features a live DJ. It’s a fully air-conditioned sports bar and restaurant with cushioned seating and relaxed atmosphere. They serve a good a selection of western, Khmer and Thai food, western breakfasts, pizzas, burgers, and more. Pool table, live sports TV, games. • Opening Hours: Happy hour from 09:00 to 21:00. Open 24-hours. • Location: #24-26 Street 136, just off Sisowath Quay. • Remarks: Guesthouse rooms available.

• Tel: 017-288826.

Cathouse Bar and Restaurant

This is one of the oldest bars in Phnom Penh, and was established during the day of the arrival of UNTAC to help with the Cambodia governmental transition some 14 years ago. For this reason the Cathouse became an expat bar and place for foreigners to get together. Especially in the early evening it is still a hangout for long-term expatriates, and is still a good place to relax and chat with the friendly staff. It has a kind of friendly low-key pub atmosphere but is rather dark. You can sit at the bar, or in the booth-style seating. They have an extensive menu of rather good western and international food. Worth a visit at least once when in Phnom Penh. Pool tables. • Opening Hours: Happy hour from 16:00 to 19:00. Open from 11:00 to 12 midnight.

• Location: #4 Street 51, corner of Street 118.

Chiva’s Shack Bar, Restaurant and Guesthouse

A friendly bar featuring rap and Khmer rock music with a very lively atmosphere. Its a popular meeting place for both expats and tourists, and the beer and cocktails flow as freely as the conversation. The menu of classic and western food includes a delicious beef, pork and chicken BBQ. Very friendly hostesses. Pool table. Rooms include A/C, hot shower, cable TV, and breakfast. • Opening Hours: 24 hours. • Location: 6-8 Street 130, 40m from the riverside. • Tel: +855-23-986837, 016-406232.

• Price Range: Affordable.

Foreign Correspondents’ Club (FCC) – Phnom Penh

Foreign Correspondents’ Club (FCC) – Phnom Penh, Cambodia

This famous landmark (Foreign Correspondents’ Club) in an old French colonial building is still somewhat popular with expats and tourists. The bar and restaurant is located on the second floor, and the open balcony gives good views of the riverfront. It has a full bar with draft beer, cocktails, and offers a good selection of western and Asian food, but is somewhat over-priced. The FCC is not the only game in town any more, and has definitely seen better days. • Opening Hours: From 07:00 to 12 midnight. • Location: #363 Sisowath Quay, corner of Street 178.

• Tel: +855-23-992284, 023-724014.

Howie Bar

Howie’s Bar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Located just south of the Heart of Darkness, the music is loud, and the air conditioning is nice and cold. They have two bars, a pool table, and a dance floor of sorts. There is outside seating, and the staff is very friendly. This is a late night bar popular with expats. And yes, there really is a Howie. • Opening Hours: From 18:00 to 05:00, or until the last customer leaves.

• Location: #32 Street 51, south of Street 154.

Lobby Lounge & Bar

Lobby Lounge & Bar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

For an upscale venue, this is one of the best in town. It features live piano music three nights a week, afternoon high tea Monday to Friday, and a large-screen TV for sports viewing. The drink and snack selections are extensive, and the atmosphere is relaxed. The menu includes hamburgers, club sandwiches, nachos, and dim sum. • Opening Hours: Happy hour from 17:00 to 20:30, buy one drink, get one free. Open from 08:30 to 22:45. • Location: Intercontinental Hotel, 296 Mao Tse Toung Blvd., at Monireth Blvd.

• Tel: 023-424888 ext. 3562.

Pit Stop Bar

Pit Stop Bar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

A small but very friendly late-night bar with draught beer, cocktails, pool table, free WiFi, music on request, good company. Friendly staff, everyone welcome, including couples. • Opening Hours: From 18:00 to 04:00. • Location: #48 Eo, Street 51, just south of Street 154.

• Tel: 017-818116.

QG Nightclub

QG Nightclub in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

QG nightclub is a gay nightclub that stages DJ parties playing Diva Disco and Electro House music. Ladies Night is Thursday with free ladies’ and drags’ drinks and monthly theme parties are organized. The club is comfortable and sylish and offers an excellent music and lighting system. • Opening Hours: 22:00 – late.

• Location: Street 172.

Riverside Bistro

Riverside Bistro in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

This long-running, popular restaurant and bar in a French colonial-era building on the riverfront, has live music played by a Philippine band Tues. thru Sun. Plenty of sidewalk seating available. Their extensive menu includes Khmer food, Asian dishes, Pasta, BBQ, and pizza. They have a full bar and cocktail menu with a good selection of beers and wines. Pool table and free WiFi. • Opening Hours: From 07:00 to 01:30. • Location: #273A Sisowath Quay, corner of Street 148.

• Tel: 023-213898, 012-277882.

Rory’s Irish Pub & Guesthouse

Rory’s Irish Pub & Guesthouse in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

If you are looking for a pub with real Irish pub atmosphere in Phnom Penh, you’ll want to head to Rory’s. The conversation is loud, the music is somewhat loud, and it’s smoky, just like a real Irish pub. But also like an Irish pub, the people are very friendly. Along with the Irish whisky and Guinness, you will find favourites such as Irish stew, beef pie, bangers & mash, fish & chips, and more. • Opening Hours: From 06:00 to when everybody goes home. • Location: 33 Street 178, near the National Museum. • Tel: +855-89-884983.

• Price Range: Affordable.

Rubies Wine Bar

Rubies Wine Bar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Established in 2002, this has long been a favourite place with Phnom Penh expats. A live DJ performs two Fridays a month, spinning funk, soul, disco, Latin, Nu-Disco, 80s boogie, etc., 19:00 till late; a great place for expats to relax after work where everyone actually does know your name. Happy hour with $1 Tiger draft, $2 house wine, and two-for-one cocktails from 16:00 to 19:30 daily. • Opening Hours: From 10:00 to Late. • Location: Corner of Street 19 and Street 240.

• Tel: +855-17-372381.

Shanghai Bar

Shanghai Bar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

This late-night bar is one of the longest established bars in the city, and one of the most popular. Established in 2000, it is popular with both residents and tourists alike. There are many friendly hostesses, lounge seating, two pool tables, and large-screen TV. • Opening Hours: Drinks are half price during happy hour from 16:00 to 19:00. Open from 16:00 to Late. • Location: Street 51, corner of Street 172.

• Tel: +855- 21-804836.

Sharky Bar & Restaurant

Sharky Bar & Restaurant in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Located in a large upstairs area, it is a noisy and boisterous place. Sharky Bar has been a part of the Phnom Penh nightlife scene for many years. There is, of course, ample seating, and an extensive bar, and a balcony seating overlooking the street. It is also a restaurant, and the menu includes bar snacks, salads, Tex-Mex, burgers, sandwiches, Thai food, and complete dinners. • Opening Hours: From 16:00 to late. • Location: #126 Street 130, four blocks from the riverfront.

• Tel: +855-23-211825, 012-228045.

Sport Bar

Sport Bar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

A recently opened nightspot in Phnom Penh, this open-air venue is already popular with tourists, expats and locals. It purports to be a sports bar, but the hip-hop, rock music they play is quite loud, so you are not likely to hear any sports commentary. They serve sandwiches, spaghetti, beef main courses, chicken, fish, snacks, soup, salads, and of course they have a full bar. • Opening Hours: 24 hours. • Location: #81 Street 172, west of Street 51.

• Tel: 023-6732323.

The Heart of Darkness

The Heart of Darkness in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Open since 1993, it has been one of the most famous bars in Phnom Penh with tourists, locals, and expats alike. Actually, more of a club than a bar, it has much more of a local Khmer feel to it with ear-splitting music, dancing, and pool table. Still popular, and packed on Friday and Saturday night, but somewhat over-hyped. • Opening Hours: From 19:00 to very near dawn.

• Location: #26 Street 51, south of Street 164.

The Walkabout Pub

The Walkabout Pub in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Open 24 hours a day, this long-running bar is popular with tourists looking for relaxation and companionship. There are many young ladies working freelance, and there is a guesthouse upstairs. The bars and pool tables are on the first floor and second floor with balcony seating. Food is served at all hours. It is usually quite packed in the evenings till late. • Opening Hours: 24 hours. • Location: corner of Street 51 and Street 174, three blocks to the Royal Palace.

• Tel: +855-23-211715.

Zeppelin Café

Zeppelin Café in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

This is a real after hours bar, and the bar that other bar owners go to after their bars close. For rock music lovers of the 60s, 70s and 80s, the owner/DJ can choose from over 1,000 real albums of rock, blues, and punk. Customers can make music requests and choose from 47 kinds of cocktails. It’s is also a great place to eat, with a varied selection of dishes: Chinese dumplings, spring rolls, fried noodles, sweet & sour pork, fried eggplant, great French fries, and more. • Opening Hours: From 18:30 to 04:00, or so. • Location: 109C Street 51, near Walkabout. • Tel: +855-12-881181.

• Price Range: Affordable.

Safety Notice

Although Phnom Penh is a safe city, and problems are rare, common sense should still be your guide. When going from one nightlife area to another, or when returning to your hotel late at night, it is advisable to take one of the many moto-taxis or tuk-tuks available. For a short ride, a moto should only be about a dollar or two. As with any big city, you need to be aware of your surroundings at all times, and walking about with cash and valuables is not the wisest thing to do./.

Tours in Cambodia

• Impressive Cambodia – 7 Days/ 6 Nights
• Charms of Cambodia – 5 Days/ 4 Nights
• Angkor Magnificence – 4 Days/ 3 Nights
• Highlights of Cambodia – 4 Days/ 3 Nights
• Cambodia Spotlights – 4 Days/ 3 Nights
• Siem Reap to Angkor Wat – 3 Days/ 2 Nights
• Tour in Siem Reap & Angkor Wat – 3 Days/ 2 Nights
• Highlight Ancient City – 3 Days/ 2 Nights
• Classic tour in Phnom Penh – 3 Days/ 2 Nights
• Siem Reap & Angkor Wat tours – 2 Days/ 1 Night