9 Romantic Date Ideas to Try in Phnom Penh

Sunset romance
Sunset romance | © Rabiem22 / Flickr

The Cambodian capital is teeming with energy and packed full of places to enjoy a date, with the city taking on a romantic hue at dusk. Here are nine romantic suggestions to take your date when staying in Phnom Penh.

1. Koh Pich

Natural Feature

1. Koh Pich
© Marissa Carruthers
At dusk, Phnom Penh’s flashy Koh Pich, or Diamond Island, fills up with Cambodian families soaking up the finest time of the day, golden hour. And love hangs heavy in the air, with this being a popular spot for local young couples to hang out. Each evening, the masses of food stalls fill up and people crack open cans of Angkor beer, music blares from giant speakers, and the flashing lights of the sprawling fairground illuminate the sky.

2. Riverside

Natural Feature

Some of the bars and restaurants that look out onto the riverside
© Lisa-Lisa / Shutterstock
Riverside, or Sisowath Quay, is best visited at dusk when locals descend on the promenade looking out across the Tonle Sap and Mekong rivers to take part in acrobatics, play games or simply hang out. Soak up the sights from one of the many restaurants and bars lining the strip, or join the couples who stroll hand-in-hand along the river.

3. SORA skybar

Bar, Asian, Fusion

Phnom Penh, Cambodia
© Khlungcenter / Shutterstock

There’s something truly special about watching a city twinkling below. Thanks to the recent addition of Rosewood Phnom Penh to the capital’s hotel scene, the city can now be viewed from sky high – perfect for a date. Perched on the 37th floor of the 39-storey Vattanac Capital Tower is the five-star hotel’s Sora skybar, which offers unparalleled panoramic views across the rising capital and beyond. Open from 5.30pm, guests can take in the sunset and watch Phnom Penh light up before their eyes. Simply stunning.

A romantic meal

There’s no shortage of eateries in the capital and if you want to push the boat out, there are plenty of upmarket spots that come without the price tag they would afford in the west. For fine Cambodian dining, head to Malis, which is run by Cambodian celebrity chef Luu Meng. If French cuisine is more appealing, then head to Topaz or Van’s Restaurant. Or, for something more intimate, book a table at The Lost Room.

One of the delicious dishes served at Topaz, Phnom Penh

Sunset cocktail cruise

Head to the docks on Sisowath Quay at about 4pm and jump onboard one of the many boats that hit the waters in time for sunset. The price, quality and services vary so do a bit of research before jumping on board, to ensure the trip contains the level of romance required to create the perfect date. Kanika Boat has a range of recommended options.

Enjoy a sunset cocktail cruise

Prepare a picnic

Cambodians love to picnic, so why not join in the fun and make a date out of it. Pack up a picnic and cool box, jump in a tuk-tuk and head out of town to Tonle Bati. Located about 30km south of Phnom Penh, the edge of the lake is dotted with floating bamboo pavilions complete with sitting mats and hammocks. Unpack your picnic and spend the afternoon lazing by the water. Don’t forget your bathers if you fancy a cooling dip.

Canter through the countryside

If you’re more of the adventurous type, then catch a 10-minute ferry from the pier near Naga World to Arey Ksat on the other side of the Mekong River and go horse riding. Areyksat Equestrian Trail Ride offers hacks through the countryside that range from one-hour to a full day and can be arranged to take in sunset.

Go horse riding

Head out of town

If you fancy spending the day schmoozing your beau, then organise a day trip out of the capital. There are plenty of places on the outskirts of Phnom Penh that make for a great day of discovery with your other half. A day can easily be spent exploring the ancient capital of Oudong, which sits approximately 44km from the city. Here, you can walk in the footsteps of the kings who ruled the country from the ancient site from 1618 to 1866. Alternatively, hire a bicycle and head out to Koh Dach (Silk Island) for a day of tranquility.

Phnom Oudong sits in the background

Enjoy a he and she spa

There are plenty of spas to choose from in Cambodia, so enjoying some pampering together is the perfect way to spend a date. Many of the spas have private rooms with two beds so you can lay back, relax and rejuvenate as a duo. Bodia Spa comes recommended.

Enjoy a massage

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