Fitness & Health in Cambodia Guide

From finding a gym to the best dentists, pharmacies and opticians, here is Cambodia Begins at 40's guide to fitness and health in Cambodia.

Health in Cambodia continues to improve drastically as new hospitals, clinics and health centres open their doors – predominantly in the capital. Fitness freaks can also keep up their regime at the many fitness centres and gyms that abound Phnom Penh.

If a dental check-up or treatment is too high back at home, then you’re in look as the capital is dotted with excellent, well-priced dentists. There’s also no shortage of pharmacies countrywide – although they vastly vary in quality – and the majority of medicines are available over the counter.

Here is our guide to fitness and health in Cambodia.

Fitness Centres in Cambodia

Fitness centres in Cambodia range from basic budget joints for about $1, with equipment laid out in an open-air space with fans blowing, through to international-standard spots that, of course, come at a much higher price.

The Place is a stalwart on the scene and has positioned itself as the capital’s most luxurious gym. It has two venues, one in BKK1 and the other in Toul Kork, both of which are kitted out with state-of-the-art equipment. They also host a series of classes and boasts a sauna steam and mini-Olympic swimming pool.

Physique Club at Hotel Cambodiana is another popular spot with the capital’s gym bunnies. It boasts Cybex equipment, a swimming pool, tennis courts, and sauna and steam facilities. In addition, a range of classes are on offer, including yoga and aerobics. A spa facility is also available, with a personal trainer on hand if needed.

Superfit is another popular fitness centre serving the capital. The mega-gym comes complete with high-end equipment, classes, and steam and sauna facilities.

Hospitals in Cambodia

Health or travel insurance are essential in Cambodia as international-standard healthcare is costly. The last few years have been game-changing when it comes to hospitals in Cambodia. Previously, any major treatments or surgery would often involve a trip to Thailand. However, today the majority can be carried out in Cambodia.

The addition of Royal Phnom Hospital in 2014 was a major milestone in Cambodia’s healthcare scene. The modern facility is a member of the Bangkok Dusit Medical Services Group and provides world-class services. All medical workers are trained to Bangkok Hospital’s standards. The hospital is equipped with 100 in-patient beds, a 14-bed Intensive Care Unit (ICU), five operating rooms, four labour and delivery rooms, and 24-hour Laboratory and Medical Imaging services.

Khema International Polyclinic offers more affordable services than Royal Phnom Penh, delivered to high standards. It has three locations in the capital – BKK1, Toul Kork and on Street 2004. Its facilities take in maternity wards and the centres are kitted out with the high-quality medical technologies. Its local medical teams are also supervised by expatriate doctors.

Sunrise Japan Hospital opened in 2016 on the Phnom Penh peninsular of Choy Changvar, bringing a taste of Japanese quality healthcare to Cambodia. It has 50 beds and 14 departments that include emergency, trauma, infections, cardiology, neurology, and pediatric care.

Health in Cambodia
Be sure to take care of your health in Cambodia
Pharmacies in Cambodia

Pharmacies in Cambodia vary from hole-in-the-wall style setups through to international-standard chemists. If available, international-standard pharmacies are recommended as they store medicines at correct temperatures and keep on top of details, such as expiry dates.

Landing in the country in 2004, UCare has quickly grown to become the nation’s first and largest pharmacy and beauty stores in the country. It sells a range of local and international medicines, as well as make-up and beauty products from the region and further afield.

Guardian built its brand in Malaysia and Singapore before expanding to Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam and Brunei. As well as offering a vast selection of medicines, it sells health and skin care products, as well as make-up. In-store specialists are also on hand to offer expert advice to customers.

Pharmacie de la Gare has been serving Phnom Penh since 1994 and has since spread its operations across Cambodia. It stocks a range of high-quality medicines and para-medical products and has at least two qualified pharmacists on duty at all times throughout its stores.

Dentists in Cambodia

Dentalcare in Cambodia covers the entire spectrum, ranging from dodgy dentists in a dingy shack through to internationally-recognised clinics. Unlike a trip to the doctor or hospital, dental work of international standards in Cambodia is relatively cheap when compared to many places in the West and a trip to the dentist won’t break the bank.

Eurodental Clinic is a popular option with expats. It has a team of international dentists and local dentists trained to international standards and offer a range of services that take in general dental care, preventative dentistry, dental implants, cosmetic dentistry and orthodontic treatment.

Roomchang Dental Hospital is another trustworthy stalwart. It opened its doors in the capital in 1996 as a small single-chair dental clinic and has grown to span several floors. Slightly cheaper than Eurodental, its services also span the spectrum, with the choice of an international dentist or a local dentist, with international training.

Denriche Asia Dental Clinic offers Japanese hospitality and dental excellence. Located in Vattanac Tower, its dentists hail from Japan, where their local employees are sent for training. In line with tradition, this clinic resembles more of a spa, offering an omotenashi service – Japanese hospitality – on arrival in the form of Japanese tea and a powder area, where patients can relax with a cold towel and drink after their appointment.

Opticians in Cambodia

There are plenty of opticians in Phnom Penh to choose from, with the majority offering eye tests for free. The options listed below have plenty of stores scattered across the city, and all offer a range of glasses, from cheap frames through to branded designs, as well as contact lenses and sunglasses.

E-Optics has several outlets throughout Phnom Penh and offers a wide range of frames and services. It also sells daily, two-weekly and monthly contact lenses that are imported from Thailand, and boasts a vast array of sunglasses, with the option for them to be prescription.

Eye Care Optic has been serving the capital since 1994 and has since spread its operations to Takhmao, Siem Reap, Battambang and Poipet. It sells lenses, frames, sunglasses and contact lenses, all imported from overseas. Modern Optics is another reliable option that offers the same services.

Ensuring your health in Cambodia can be easy so long as you stick to a helathy lifestyle
Keeping your health in Cambodia can be done if you stick to a healthy lifestyle.

Healthy Living in Cambodia

Of course finding the right dentist, hospital and optician is only part of the picture to keep your health in Cambodia. It is also essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Fortunately there are plenty of eateries catering to those who want to complete a holistic, healthy lifestyle. While a few years ago, vegans would have struggled to survive, there are plenty of delicious plant-based options up for grabs today.

Vibe is also popular with the health-conscious crowd. It is a 100 percent plant-based café and juicer that also offers a range of juice cleanses and wholefoods. It is sister to Phnom Penh’s Backyard Café, which has been serving healthy, organic, homemade slow food since 2015.

After planting itself firmly on Siem Reap’s eating map, Wild recently extended its operations to Phnom Penh. Located in a leafy tropical oasis in the heart of the city, it puts a contemporary twist on Asian classics, specialising in spring rolls, with a menu packed full of veggie and vegan treats. It also prides itself on its range of cocktails.

Escape the bustle of capital life at Farm to Table. This outdoor space comes complete with friendly free-range chickens and cute kittens and cats. Its menu features the freshest seasonal produce sourced from organic farmers and growers in Cambodia.

A long term favourite expat café Java really has it locked down when it comes to consistent quality of food. Prices are reasonable and they have many healthy shakes, salads & other healthy goodies on offer. Java is a creative café which houses local art up stairs.

Opened in 2013 Artillery has both a Phnom Penh and Siem Reap café. Again they are a creative hub for the arts here in Cambodia and offer food classes, wellness events and detox programmes. Artillery will tell you themselves that their plant-based, lifestyle-focused menu brings together their knowledge of vegetarian, vegan and raw food into quirky and satisfying dishes. Their recipes incorporate nutrient-dense ‘superfoods’ and stay true to our focus on organic, local ingredients whenever possible.  The Phnom Penh café is located in the small alleyway just off street 240.

If you have the time to cook your healthy meals at home then Natural Garden is well worth stopping by. They currently have four shops open in Phnom Penh, two in BKK and a Toul Kork and Toul Tom Pong Store. Natural Garden stocks many organic fruit and veg products as well as coconut oils, moringa, almond milk and all kinds of healthy products. They also offer a home delivery service.

Let the adventure begin.