Cannabis is not legal in Cambodia, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to find it. The country has a long history of using the cannabis plant in food and medicine and is still used as such today. Cannabis possession and consumption are illegal, but you can find the plant for sale on the street or used in restaurants.
Cannabis in Cambodia
Cannabis use dates back to the 6th century in Cambodia and has been grown for use in cuisine and medicine since then. It was made “illegal” in 1961 in compliance with the Single Convention on Narcotics treaty, but this went mostly unenforced, as it did again in 1992 after a United Nations intervention.
Today, you’re likely to find the plant for sale in public as well as used in restaurants. Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia, is considered a “cannabis hotspot” where you can fairly easily find the plant for sale or used in food.
“Happy pizza” is a popular dish that infuses the plant into pizza, although it’s more popular with tourists than with locals. Online reports vary in the strength of “happy pizza” but all agree you should consume with caution, as it may be stronger than you expect.
Possible penalties for cannabis
Although cannabis is illegal in Cambodia, prohibition is not often enforced. Vendors can sell cannabis freely in big cities, usually without harassment from the police who are looking for harder drugs like heroin and crystal meth.
Use discretion when consuming. If you are caught with cannabis, you risk getting your stash confiscated, facing a hefty fine, a bribe, or even a night in jail. It’s best not to smoke in public. Consume in areas where other people, particularly locals, are consuming.
At time of writing there was no reliable information on possible penalties.
Medical marijuana in Cambodia
Cambodia has no formalized medical marijuana program, but the plant has been used as medicine for centuries.
CBD regulations in Cambodia
Unlike other places where cannabis is illegal, CBD is not exceedingly popular in Cambodia. The cannabis plant has been used for so long in the country that it is easy to find and cheap to get. While hemp plants may also be grown alongside marijuana plants, don’t expect to find CBD oil or hemp stores in Cambodia.
Can you grow your own weed?
Cambodian residents can grow their own cannabis plants in small-scale operations (translation on page 90). The government recognizes the right of Cambodians to grow the plant, but this does not apply to visitors or non-residents.
Visiting Cambodia – can you buy or bring marijuana products?
Finding weed in Cambodia is fairly easy, particularly if you’re in Phnom Phen. Vendors sell the plant on the street, taxi drivers often carry joints, and there is “happy pizza” for sale throughout the city and even the country.
Don’t try to bring cannabis products into the country. This is considered drug trafficking and treated much more harshly than consumption. You don’t want to find yourself facing Cambodian jail time.