Rainy season is finally upon us! When it rains it can really pour during Cambodia’s rainy season. With many of the favored activities around Battambang being outdoor affairs, this can leave you a little strapped for options during the rainiest months. Here are a few things you can in Battambang do while keeping dry during the showers:
Pub quiz at Here be Dragons
The quiz master changes week to week so there’s no real theme to the quizzes, but they usually consist of five rounds, one being musical. It’s recommended to arrive around 7:30 p.m. in order to get seats, but there is also a good menu ranging from Asian to western cuisine so you can also have dinner if you wish. There is no entry fee and the winning team gets a beer tower!
Wednesdays at 8 p.m.
Board games at Ambrosia
Ambrosia restaurant not only has delicious local and western dishes, great smoothies, and $0.50 draft beers, but also a range of board games that you can borrow including scrabble, cards and cards against humanity. For a wet afternoon sitting inside with some games could be an ideal activity for all ages.
Open every day except Saturday.
Go to the circus!
The Phare Ponleu Selpak circus has performances three nights a week during rainy season.
and the shows, which are based on traditional Khmer folktales and feature skilled Cambodian performers, are a mixture of circus tricks, acrobatics, and theatrical performance. Tickets cost $14.
7 p.m., see schedule for dates or ask a local ticket vendor, such as Ambrosia, for details.
Drop into Here be Dragons and head to the rooftop twice per week for yoga lessons. The rooftop is sheltered so you will miss the worst of the weather, but you may get a bit damp (cooled off?) as the walls are open. It’s a relaxing way to wind down at the end of the day and also mingle with other expats, locals, and visitors to town. Classes are $2 and mats are available to borrow.
Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:30 p.m.
Visit the Ancient House
Mrs. Bun Roeung’s Ancient House near Wat Kor is an old French Colonial era home, also formerly the home to Mr. Noun Chea, the second brother of the Pol Pot regime, that has now been turned into a museum. It is a traditional wooden home, allowing you a chance to learn about traditional architecture and learn a little about Cambodian history. The drive out there is also very beautiful and there are a lot of pagodas en route if you’re willing to brave the weather.
Open daily, from early until dusk.
Take a cooking class
There are a few places in town where you can learn to cook Cambodian food. Nary’s Kitchen and the Smokin’ Pot both have classes that come recommended with classes. Each half-day class includes a trip to the market, a cookbook, and a meal. You’ll make several dishes and can able to enjoy your efforts afterwards. Classes at Nary’s cost $10 and at Smokin’ Pot cost $12. You can find more information on guide of things to do in Battambang.
Nary’s Kitchen has daily classes, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. or 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
The Smokin’ Pot has daily classes, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Get a massage
The Beautiful Foot Spa offers a relaxing one-hour foot scrub and massage combination in their cosy spa located in the upstairs of Green Mango Restaurant. Stop in for a relaxing break, to which you can add a cheeky glass of wine for just $2. Classy hotel also offers a range of different massages including one-hour Khmer and oil massages from $8 in their spa at the back of the hotel, near the pool.
Visit a gallery
Battambang is know as an art city, and on a rainy day there’s no better time than to visit a gallery. Bric-a-Brac has an up-to-date guide to Battambang’s art galleries, including Sangker Gallery, Lotus Bar and Gallery, and Romcheik Pram Art Space. All feature local and Cambodian artists, many of them graduates of Phare Ponleu Selpak, in a variety of mediums.
If you’re looking for more activities (rain or shine) see these things to do in Battambang.
Here Be Dragons Hostel
Road 159D, Street 209, Battambang
T: 089 264 895
Open Sunday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
102/7 Street 121 (near Road 2), Battambang
T: 092 766 938
Opening Hours: Sunday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
(was The Dubai Cafe, opposite Lux Guesthouse)
Street 110 at Preah Vihear Street, Battambang
T: 070 376 387
Phare Ponleu Selpak Circus
Mrs. Bun Roeung’s Ancient House
The Smokin’ Pot
The Beautiful Foot Spa
Open 12:30 to 5 p.m. on Wednesdays and 12:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Upstairs in Green Mango, Street 159D between Streets 206 and 209, Battambang
T: 011 368 941
Spa open daily, 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Street 159 D, Battambang
T: 053 952 555
Open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
47-10 Street 1.5, Battambang
T: 012 309 829
Lotus Bar and Gallery
Romcheik Pram Art Space
Open daily, 2 to 7 p.m.
Street 201A, Battambang
T: 095 521 432