Svay Rieng is a relatively small Cambodian province, but has the benefit of having one of the country's busiest highways running directly through town. This is national highway no 1 that links Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam with Phnom Penh in the Cambodia. The Bavet border crossing is just 43 km from town.
Travellers and business people that are passing through have made this quite a prosperous area, which is mostly a result of the border trade traffic. This is a great place as an overnight stop or longer on the Cambodia travel packages with the very friendly and welcoming locals. There is a very lively marketplace in town with plenty of great accommodation and food options.
It is located close to the Waiko River that has scenic and vast marshlands, which was the result of a large stretch of the river drying up over the years.
There are several reasons to make Svay Rieng a stopover such as its friendly nature, the Prasat Prasat temple, and the stunning Prey Ba Sak lake area just outside of town, as well as Temple ruins like the Prasat Basac and Prasat Chea Hao.
Even though this isn't a major destination on the tourist map, it is still perfect for those that want to experience the rural life in the Cambodia on the Cambodia Package Holiday.
Cambodia has a tropical climate that is warm and humid. Travellers can visit this country at any time of the year because of its all-round pleasant weather that has an average temperature range of 27°C; the minimum range is about 16°C. The temperature for the cool season (and preferred time to visit) is 24°C to 32°C and this runs from November to March, the temperature for the hot season is 28°C to 36°C and runs from March to May, and the temperature for the rainy season is 24° to 32°C in this runs from May until October. If travelling during the rainy season it is necessary to take extra caution if travelling by road as many of the countryside roads are difficult to navigate during this time. Also, it benefits to pack extra supplies during the rainy season to stay comfortable such as a light rain jacket.
Svay Rieng is a relatively small province that is 2966 km² in size. The province consists mainly of plain wet areas that are used for agricultural plantations and rice fields. Plus this region also includes two of the largest rivers in the country, the mighty Mekong River and the Tonle Bassac. This town is located in the southeast of Cambodia and is bordered to the east and south by Vietnam, to the west by Prey Veng, and to the north by Kampong Cham
How to get there
The most convenient travel option to reach Svay Rieng includes a share taxi or bus service. A regular share taxi service runs from Phnom Penh on a daily basis and heads to Svay Rieng. The cost of this journey is in the region of $2. Plus, it is possible to pay a little extra for more space and comfort. For the bus ride, a service offered by the Hour Lean Bus Company connects to this town on a daily basis and the cost in the region of $2 for the 3 hour journey
Other options include using a motorcycle that can offer the shorter travel time because of the ability to easily skirt the many potholes in the road.
Where to stay
Even though this is a relatively small town there are still plenty of worthwhile hotels and guesthouses to stay for the night on the Cambodia Package Tours.
A stay at the Tonlay Waiko Hotel gives the opportunity to relax at the largest hotel that also includes an attached restaurant and nightclub. The large size and relatively modern look makes it one of the preferred options in town. The rooms are quite spacious with amenities like a fridge, air-con, satellite TV and Western-style bathroom. The cost per night is in the region of $10-$25.
The Santepheap Hotel offers one of the finest guesthouses in the region - although its rooms are starting to look quite neglected and old. The upstairs rooms are preferred because they have windows, while the downstairs rooms don't. The cost per night is $5 with a bath or $4 without.
By booking a room at the Vimean Monorom you get access to a quite modern place with well fitted out rooms that include two beds and a western-style bath. The cost per night is $10 including a fan or $15 with air-con.
Eat and drink
In addition to the restaurants in town, there are plenty of food stalls in the region of Phsar Svay Rieng for those that like the fast and budget friendly food. Most of the stalls open late afternoon until late at night with most dotted along the riverside.
Most of the restaurants in town are kept open throughout the day and start serving French bread, omelettes and Chinese noodle soup in the mornings. Plus, most of the restaurants have the English language menus with the pleasant and friendly staff.
A visit to the small Svay Rieng Restaurant makes it possible to enjoy a varied range of Chinese and Khmer food.
The Pich Restaurant is a very popular establishment with the local people. In addition to the usual Chinese and Khmer fair, there is also a variety of western-based dishes served.
The unique setting of the Boeng Meas Restaurant makes it a very pleasant place to stop for something to eat on the Indochina tour packages. Built on stilts, this restaurant sits near the riverside and is one of the finest in town. It serves all of the favourite Khmer dishes and has the proper English-based menu.
Svay Rieng has a very large and busy market that can offer virtually everything you could need. The market in the Svay Rieng centre offers most of the day-to-day items like meats, vegetables and fruits, as well as items that are great as gifts or souvenirs.
Things to see and do
Bavet International Border
The Bavet International Border is approx. 40 km from the provincial town of Svay Rieng. This border crossing is a very busy area with people readily crossing between Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam and Phnom Penh in Cambodia.
In addition to crossing the border, Bavet's main attraction for visitors is the casinos that are within a very short distance of the border. The casinos are regularly visited by travellers that are crossing between these two countries. Plus, there is the Psar Nat market, which is a great place to stop for extra supplies and includes many items being transferred between Vietnam and Cambodia.