Boeung Keng Kang — commonly referred to as BKK1 — is increasingly becoming known as the capital’s tourist hub, with a growing collection of bars, restaurants and hotels setting up shop there. Here are the 10 best bars in the area.
Located on the vibrant bar-packed stretch of Street 278, near Wat Langka, Top Banana is a lively rooftop bar that is popular with backpackers and is well worth a visit. Live entertainment regularly takes over the venue in the form of bands, musicians and DJs.
Another popular spot with the backpacker crowd is TUSK House, a few doors down from Top Banana. Having recently undergone a renovation, the venue is in top shape and the pool is open to all. This is another spot that often hosts pool and other parties, and it becomes lively in the evenings, especially on the weekends.
Located on a small lane that is becoming full of boutique bars, diners and stores, off Street 51, Mini Banana is a stalwart on the BKK1 backpacker scene. Drink specials, live music, friendly staff and a chilled out vibe make this a great evening hangout in Phnom Penh.
Che Culo! is a hip hangout that caters to the capital’s cool crowd. The lofty indoor stylish space boasts a well-packed bar, booth seats and a selection of high chairs and tables. There is also an outdoor terrace with seating. A range of cocktails are served, along with beers, wines and spirits. And a selection of tapas dishes are perfect for sharing.
Another Street 278 stalwart is Liquid, where cheap drinks are swilled and affordable bites eaten. The intimate bar has a relaxed atmosphere, with punters usually shooting a game of pool on the table at the back of the bar.
Unless you’re in the know, then it’s easy to miss BatBong, as its entrance is disguised as a Coca-Cola machine hidden down the lane off Street 51, near Wat Langka. Walk inside and you’ll discover a sophisticated, cavernous speakeasy that serves stylish cocktails to match its ambience.
This classy rooftop bar and restaurant offers stylish surroundings and great views. Private seating is available, with plump sofas dotted throughout the sprawling venue. A range of signature cocktails are served from the well-stocked central bar, which also boasts a wide range of spirits, wines and beers. Food is also served. This is a popular spot with the upmarket Khmer crowd.
This Belgian tavern is a spacious affair on Street 278. It has plenty of seating, with an air conditioned room available if it gets a little too hot. A small stage regularly hosts live music, with a dance floor to bust some moves, and weekly salsa classes. More than 40 different Belgian beers are served, as well as a range of other wines, cocktails, spirits and food.
As a fully dedicated sports bar, SCORE Bar pulls in the punters when a match is on, so expect to jostle for seats if it’s a big one. Screening everything from rugby and football to basketball, UFC, cricket and golf, the spacious bar boasts one huge screen and multiple HD TVs, four slate pool tables, an al fresco terrace and mezzanine, and a full menu to match.
Street 278 is also home to Phnom Penh’s stalwart rock bar, Zeppelin Café, which relocated from its Street 51 venue about 18 months ago. The popular dive bar tends to get busier in the later hours, so it’s a great spot to round out the night. It regularly hosts live music and serves up a selection of food to soak up the booze.