Is water safe to drink in Cambodia?

Drinking tap water generally isn’t recommended in Cambodia. Water quality varies from region to region and there may be harmful bacteria or viruses present, so the safest option is to treat or purify your water, or opt for bottled water. Also, steer clear of raw vegetables, fruits with edible skins, salads and drinks with ice, as these may have been in contact with unfiltered tap water. Choose cooked foods and fruits that need to be peeled instead.

It is estimated that more than 4.5 million plastic water bottles are used each month in the tourism sector in Cambodia. Hundreds of organisations around the country, including many restaurants and cafes, are supporting the move to limit the amount of plastic water bottles sold. They are achieving this by providing large drums of water so customers and visitors can fill up their reusable water bottle during the day. So, for these environmental reasons, try to avoid buying bottled water. Bring a reusable bottle or canteen (we recommend at least a 1.5 litre capacity) that can be refilled as needed. Some hotels you'll stay in may have drinking water available. Your local leader will be able to tell you where to find filtered water, or you can bring purification tablets in the case that safe drinking water cannot be located.

If you do have to purchase bottled water, ensure that the serrated seal has not been tampered with. If it has, this is an indicator that the bottle may have been filled with tap water.

Learn more about what to drink in Cambodia