Drinking and nightlife in Cambodia

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Phnom Penh

    Samai Distillery

    The origins of sugarcane are in Southeast Asia, so the Venezuelan owners of this beloved rum distillery see themselves as bringing the tradition full circle. Samai opens to visitors on Thursday nights for lavish parties, typically with guest bartenders and live music. The artisan rums, including one with Kampot pepper, taste far superior to mass-market spirits.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Phnom Penh

    Pontoon

    After floating around from pier to pier for a few years (hence the name), the city’s premier nightclub found a permanent home on terra firma. It draws top local DJs and occasional big foreign acts. Admission is US$3 to US$8 at weekends; free on weeknights. Thursday is ladies night. Adjacent Pontoon Pulse is more of a lounge club, with electronica and ambient music.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Koh Rong

    Sky Bar

    Perched way up on the hill overlooking the pier, Sky Bar is Koh Rong's most sophisticated bar, with professional cocktails, a rocking gen-X soundtrack and modern vegetarian and vegan food (raw bowls, anyone?). The views and discounted drinks make it a great happy-hour option, with the action often continuing well into the evening. The brunch is highly recommended.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Phnom Penh

    Battbong

    An always-packed speakeasy, Battbong is tricky to locate. Look out for the Coca-Cola machine at the end of Langka Lane and locate the hidden button. Inside is a decadent beatnik-style bar with signature craft cocktails, plush sofas and the kind of low lighting that makes everyone look gorgeous. Down-tempo beats set the mood when there are no live bands.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Phnom Penh

    Long After Dark

    This place keeps visitors hanging around the Russian Market area long after dark with its combination of rare single-malt whiskies, Cambodian craft beers and a vinyl collection that starts a-spinnin' at weekends. Brief happy hour at 5pm on Friday and some interesting whisky flights available with Highlands or global themes. Cool and cosy all at once.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Kampot

    Karma Traders

    Reserve Tuesday nights for a visit to Karma Traders' rooftop bar, where there's live music, US$2 tacos (try the Coca-Cola pulled pork) and two-for-one drinks if you can beat the bartender in rock, paper, scissors. There's also a ping-pong room, a cinema, a pool, a slackline, a Sunday pub quiz and about a dozen rooms available (US$12 to US$16).

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Phnom Penh

    Heart of Darkness

    This Phnom Penh institution with an alluring Angkorian theme has evolved into more of a nightclub than a bar over the years, with drag shows that drop jaws Wednesday to Saturday nights. The place attracts all – and we mean all – sorts. Everybody should stop in at least once just to bask in the aura and atmosphere of the place.

  • Nightlife in Siem Reap

    Wild

    Hidden away down a small side alley near Wat Dam Nak, Wild is an unprepossessing door from the front, but enter the threshold to discover a secret garden and an old wooden house. Cocktails with local infusions are a popular choice for locals, and the light menu is blissfully simple as all items are a fusion interpretation of spring rolls.

  • Nightlife in Kampot

    Infamata

    With its shabby-chic interior and Botero-esque painting of a reclining lady behind the bar, Infamata is long on atmosphere and backs it up with professional cocktails, craft gin and boutique beer. Live music kicks off Thursdays and Saturdays, while high season sees the opening of the gorgeous 2nd floor. Superb fusion food rounds it out.

  • Nightlife in Siem Reap

    Harbour

    Shiver me timbers, this self-styled 'pirate tavern' is a lovable bar housed in an atmospheric wooden house in Stung Thmei. Upstairs are cocktails, booze aplenty and regular open mic, comedy and other events; downstairs is the famous Lex Roulor Tattoo Studio. Just make sure you don't get so drunk you wake up with an unplanned inking.

  • Nightlife in Battambang

    Here Be Dragons

    Before there was the popular Dragons hostel, there was this popular bar. The watering hole hasn't forgotten its roots, and frequently rumbles till late with a mix of backpackers and expats. It offers a Wednesday pub quiz, informal ping-pong tourneys and a Saturday afternoon BBQ.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Siem Reap

    Asana Wooden House

    This is a traditional Cambodian countryside home dropped into the backstreets of Siem Reap, which makes for an atmospheric place to drink. Lounge on kapok-filled rice sacks while sipping a classic cocktail made with infused rice wine. Khmer cocktail classes (US$15 per person) with Sombai spirits are available at 6pm.

  • Nightlife in Phnom Penh

    Elephant Bar

    Few places are more atmospheric than this sophisticated bar at the Raffles. It has been drawing journalists, politicos, and the rich and famous for more than 90 years. Singapore slings and many more drinks are half-price during the generous happy hour (4pm to 9pm). The bar also boasts world-class G&Ts.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Kep

    Sailing Club

    With a small beach, a breezy wooden bar and a wooden jetty poking out into the sea, this is one of Cambodia’s top sundowner spots. The Asian-fusion food is excellent and you can get your crab fix here, too. There's an outdoor cocktail lounge and a vastly expanded seafront terrace.

  • Nightlife in Phnom Penh

    Brown Coffee

    The flagship outlet of a homegrown coffee chain that has outperformed all the expensive imports to produce some of Phnom Penh's most refined spaces and best coffee. There are lots of branches around town, as the company has set its sights on cracking Cambodia and, possibly, Asia.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Phnom Penh

    Botanico Wine & Beer Garden

    Bringing US-style craft brewing to Phnom Penh, this great little hideaway stocks Irish Red, IPA and other home-brewed Cerevisia beers. It is set in a verdant garden tucked down a winding alley. Live music on weekends and Tuesday trivia nights keep expats coming back for more.

  • Nightlife in Siem Reap

    Picasso

    This tiny tapas bar in the Alley West area is a convivial spot for a bit of over-the-counter banter. With only a dozen or so stools, expect spillover into the street – especially once the cheap sangria, worldly wines and cheap Tiger bottles start flowing.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Phnom Penh

    Hub Street Cocktails

    Cheap craft cocktails and killer street cuisine collide to great effect at this marvellous bamboo bar, beloved by expats and Cambodians alike. Arriving here feels like stumbling upon a familiar yet exotic block party, where strangers are quick friends.

  • Nightlife in Phnom Penh

    Oskar Bistro

    This upscale gastro-pub blends the bar and restaurant to perfection. Choose from creative cocktails and a huge wine list of nearly 60 tipples, while relaxing to subtle DJ beats. A top spot for a late-night feed, as the kitchen stays open until 11pm.

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Sen Monorom

    The Hangout

    The most happening spot in town. There are bar sports including table football, occasional jam sessions and some of Sen Monorom's best Western food to complement the Khmer menu (mains US$2 to US$7). It's run by an affable Tasmanian-Khmer couple.