Tonle Sap Lake Tour: Chong Khneas Floating Village

I stayed in Siem Reap for 8 days last February. In that duration, I was able to spend spend most of my mornings either exploring the Angkor Wat and the rest of the temples (Temple Overload!) or staying in bed ’till lunch time. At night, we would go to the Pub Street to eat, shop or just walk around. Just happy that this trip pushed through since a PTB meet-up took place. Thanks to several budget airlines for these cheap airfares for making wanderers happy. Just book it!


Tonle Sap Tour in Siem Reap, Cambodia
All set for the Tonle Sap Lake Tour!

When I decided to extend my travel, we were able to take the Tonle Sap Lake Tour as suggested by my awesome friends. We booked the Half Day Tour of Chong Khneas thru the Tara Boat website and received a confirmation right away. I am truly curious about the Floating Village.

For $26 each, we’re scheduled to explore this interesting part of Siem Reap.

A van service picked us up from Victory Guesthouse before 10AM, our scheduled time of departure. We met Mr. Soupond, our tour guide for the day. He was nice and answered my queries right away. Another guest from Serbia went with us.

Tonle Sap Tour in Siem Reap, Cambodia

I was a bit surprised upon our arrival at the boat dock. Woi, Tonle Sap Lake!

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The boat we used is quite big and there’s only three guests that day. As the boat trip progresses, Mr. Soupond would mention interesting details about the floating village and its people. I can’t help but wonder upon passing through several floating houses and kids who are paddling boats. I can almost see what’s inside these floating houses.

Tonle Sap Tour in Siem Reap, Cambodia

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I am amazed and at the same time feel bad for them. With tourists coming in and out everyday who takes pictures (like me), what is the definition of privacy to them?

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Still, I am curious about this kind of lifestyle. I’ve seen boats pulling floating houses to a new location, ladies washing clothes or cooking food for lunch, kids taking a bath and many more. In short, the water within the lake is not that safe. I wonder how they keep up at night especially when there’s a heavy typhoon within the area.

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When we passed by the Chong Khneas Elementary School, we saw some kids who were about to go home. Four kids were in one boat (around 6-7 years old). One is busy paddling while two were fighting by hitting each other’s heads. One was just quiet. I am quite scared that they might fall!

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Kids, stop fighting!

Our first stop is the Crocodile Farm. Our tour guide told us that some of them sell these crocodiles for $150-$250 and they’re really big and scary 0_0

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Say AAAAAAH!

There’s also an area for the cat fish. There’s also a souvenir shop that sells expensive items. Later on, kids riding in a basin with snakes in their necks approached us. One dollah for one shot. I gave them even if others wouldn’t. Why not, right? It is one way of helping them.

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For lunch, we went to this big ship transformed into a restaurant. The cool breeze made me happy and more hungry.

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While waiting for lunch
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Tonle Sap Lake – as far as the eye can see
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Green Curry for Lunch

On our way back to civilization, I was able to chat with Mr. Soupond. He is a big fan of our very own Manny Pacquiao. He also narrated his story about his past job and how he became a tour guide. In times like these, we need to learn constantly to make a living πŸ™‚

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Mr. Soupond – Tara Boat’s Pride! πŸ˜€

More conversations about Cambodians and Filipinos.. Pacquiao and Dyesebel. Now I wonder how the Khmer movie industry is. I might look for Cambodian movies soon.

Up to this day, I still can’t get over this short but interesting tour. I do suggest that you try one of the Tonle Sap Lake Tours. I miss Siem Reap, really.

10 Comments

  1. Doc Wends said:

    And this post confirmed the fears I was told by foreign backpackers when we talked about this lake in December, crocs and children bringing pet snakes. Haha. As a result, I forgo this tour and will definitely looking forward for an awesome experience in Tonle Sap!

    Brave ka talaga Micah hahaha

    July 31, 2012
    Reply
    • Senyorita said:

      Hehe thanks Doc Wends! Hindi naman ganun ka-scary hehe although nakakabilib yung lifestyle nila

      August 1, 2012
      Reply
  2. you booked with Tara! quite expensive for a short day trip no? we went last february and we hired a whole boat for 8 USD each and we are only 3. I enjoyed Chong Khneas as well but its a bit of a rip off dont you think? but overall it’s quite okay they say Kampong Phluk is a better option though πŸ™‚

    August 1, 2012
    Reply
    • Senyorita said:

      Yep, pero may kasama na rin siyang lunch tsaka ok tour guide namin πŸ™‚

      August 1, 2012
      Reply
  3. Riz said:

    mukhang interesting tong lake na to. bet q xa teh kaso natatakot ako sa snakes. pet pa pla ng mga bata ung snakes. haha! Lurkey! as in madami tlga sila na may snakes?!!!!!!!! haha!

    At ang sarap naman ng pahinga mo sa hammock! πŸ™‚

    August 3, 2012
    Reply
    • Senyorita said:

      Hahaha oo pero tingin ko ginagawa lang nila yan for tourism sake

      August 12, 2012
      Reply
  4. Poyt said:

    I missed this tour when I went to Siem Reap, but I got to eat beside a part of Ton Le Sap at the city for dinner. I was horrified by how dirty is was and also scared for the residents – must be ridden with diseases esp. when it’s raining. I’m not sure if I’m going on this tour when I go back to Cambodia though.

    August 7, 2012
    Reply
    • Senyorita said:

      Worth the try, I guess. Just be extra careful πŸ˜›

      August 12, 2012
      Reply
  5. pusangkalye said:

    Mica.why is the LAKE sooooo brown?silt? hehe

    September 19, 2012
    Reply
    • Senyorita said:

      Combined lake and river siya. Tsaka medyo kakaiba yung flow ng tubig dun in specific season. Naging ganyan din siguro dahil sa floating village

      September 19, 2012
      Reply

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