Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A stroll through Phsar Kandal

An unedited video taken on my iPhone as I strolled up Street 148 through Phsar Kandal today just before the dinner hour. Shaky, low-res and I even managed to get my thumb in the picture. Still, a fairly typical 5PM scene at a traditional market in Phnom Penh.

'Phsar Kandal' translates literally to 'Central Market,' but nobody calls it 'Central Market' since English speakers ordinarily refer to Phsar Thmey (the big yellow domed market at Street 130) as the 'Central Market,' even though 'Phsar Thmey' actually translates to 'New Market.' Go figure. Anyway, most people, whether speaking English or Khmer, refer to this market as Phsar Kandal. And as it is located in the Vietnamese part of town, it's worth noting that said with a Vietnamese accent it is known as 'Sah Kah-da.'

Phsar Kandal is located just a block off the Phnom Penh riverfront, between Streets 136 and 154. Even though it's within a hundred meters of the riverfront tourist area, it is frequented almost exclusively by locals. There aren't any souvenirs, postcards or tourist trinkets for sale, though there are a few good coffee stalls inside serving Vietnamese and Cambodian style coffee. Decent place for a mid-afternoon ice coffee. Also a good place to eat on the cheap if you don't mind the hygienic adventure.

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