Just recently I received two emails from soon-to-be Phnom Penh visitors asking about shopping in Phnom Penh. Both also mentioned the Russian Market and what they could buy from there aside from the usual souvenirs. I had been thinking of updating my ‘Shopping in Phnom Penh‘ posts but I keep forgetting. Now that I’d been prompted I’ll be regularly posting stuff I score from Phnom Penh’s shopping grounds.
Russian Market or Tuol Tompong Market is my favorite market in all of Phnom Penh. In fact, I go there almost three times a week! The market itself is nothing interesting architecturally, just a bunch of stalls put together but really its what you can discover inside that makes it a really popular place to shop.
I shop there for fresh produce. It’s the best place for buying Cambodian silks, carvings and quality Khmer souvenir items. Lots of Cd’s and DVD movies there. If you are also the adventurous sort when it comes to food, then the food hall in the middle of the market is one place to sample the local Khmer fare.
This market also holds a secret loot of brand name clothing from various factories across Phnom Penh. Over runs, excess stuff from factories making clothes for Department store brands like Kmart, Target etc can be found here and at just about 10% of its SRP! Gap, Abercrombie, H & M, Calvin Klein, Lee, Adidas and a lot more brands can be found here and its easy to go shopping crazy because they are so cheap!
Beware though, Russian Market is super hot and you have to squeeze yourselves in the narrow passages between stalls but its totally worth it! I usually go there around 9-10 am when the heat is still bearable and around 1-2 pm also is a good time if don’t like crowds. If the heat is really unbearable then there’s a new air-conditioned store right across the street from the market called WExport, but you’ll pay a premium price for a little blast of cool air.
Anyway, I bought these things from the Russian Market last March, mostly casual items I could use for the summer. Just so you have an idea what else you can find there..
Lee Capri Pants and Merona pants (Coral) – $4 each.
Replica stuff. Kipling Backpack (large) – $8 (You can also buy Northface bags at similar prices. Vendor’s usually quote $12 for a large backpack but haggle, haggle, haggle. If you buy more you can probably get it for less than $8. These are from Vietnam but curiously they sell almost at the same prices at times lower than in Ben Thanh Market in HCM)
replica Kipling slingbag/beltbag – $4
Will post more items soon..