The distance from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap is 320 km (198 miles). In this post, we compare the 5 options to travel from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap: by bus (6 hours), by minivan (5.5-6 hours), by taxi (5.5 hours), by flight (55 minutes), and by ferry (8 hours). Ticket prices range from $11 to $80.
*COVID-19 UPDATE: The last time we checked (November 2022), the ferry was unavailable. We will update the route once the ferry resumes operations.
The cheapest way to travel from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap is by bus. For a 6-hour trip, tickets only cost $11. You can choose to travel during the day or at night by bus.
The minivan is another low priced and direct way to travel to Siem Reap. The advantage of minivans is that they offer more daily bus trips, but unfortunately, they don’t offer as much leg space.
Taxis are another common method of transport in Cambodia. A taxi ride will be a bit faster and take between 5-6 hours with fares starting at $80. This is a great option when you are travelling with a few people because you can share the costs.
Flying to Siem Reap is the fastest but also the most expensive option. Travel time by flight is just 55 minutes but keep in mind that short-haul flights like this are extremely polluting for the environment. Taking a bus is often ten times better for the environment than taking a short-haul flight.
TIP: If you decide to travel by plane, please consider including a carbon compensation fee to help reduce your impact on the environment.
During the wet season, there were also ferries operating between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. The ferry crosses Tonle Sap Lake and offers a different experience compared to the other means of travel, although it may not be the most comfortable and can get quite hot. The last time we checked (November 2022), the ferries on this route are unavailable.
There are several bus companies operating the Phnom Penh to Siem Reap route. Note that these buses have different departure and arrival points in the city centres.
You can choose between a morning and a night trip. Travelling at night is a great option to save time, but keep in mind it is safer to travel during the day. The roads in Cambodia can be quite narrow and bumpy and are not well-lit at night.
See here the schedules of bus companies with the best reviews and safety records:
Want to know how to go to the city centre from the airport? Have a look at our page on Siem Reap Airport.
Phnom Penh to Siem Reap by Ferry*
Duration: 8 hours
Duration: 8 hours
*COVID-19 UPDATE: The last time we checked (November 2022), the ferry between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap was unavailable. We suggest taking a bus, a minivan, a taxi, or a flight instead.
Taking the ferry is a completely different experience compared to travelling overland. The journey gives you an idea of how locals live along Tonle Sap Lake. While it will be an interesting ferry journey, it may not offer the spectacular views you were hoping for.
Ferries on this route only operate during the wet season (June to November). Bear in mind that the ferries operating along this route may not have the proper safety and cleanliness standards that you’re accustomed to, and the boat ride can get quite hot.
Ferry tickets cost $35 for the 8-hour ferry ride to Siem Reap.
Departure and arrival ports
If you’re keen on taking the ferry, you can board the boat at the main ferry port along Preah Sisowath Quay in the city centre. You can also book your tickets in advance through your hotel and local travel agencies in Phnom Penh.
In Siem Reap, you will arrive at the Phnom Krom Port. From this ferry port, you can take a 20-minute tuk-tuk or a 10-minute taxi to the city centre. A tuk-tuk ride usually costs around $5 and a taxi will be approximately $10-$15.
Based in Bali, Maarten’s passion for travel is undeniable. In 2016, he decided to quit his job as a stock analyst and started doing what he always dreamed of: travelling through South East Asia and helping other people plan their trips. When he is not working on Gecko Routes, you’ll find him surfing in the ocean or exploring the best gems of Indonesia.