As you may know, the Tonle Sap lake, the most extensive body of fresh water in Southeast Asia, and the home of the floating villages of Siem Reap, is unique in that the water levels change based on the time of year.
As it is the rainy season in Cambodia and the Mekong river has swelled to record levels, water in the Tonle Sap and floating villages is higher than normal right now. That is a good thing from a tourism perspective, as we will take a boat through the entire village. That being said, the tour varies slightly from the floating village itinerary listed on our website. So we wanted to share an updated itinerary for September 2018:
Guests leave Siem Reap slightly later – between 2:15 – 2:30pm – but still make the same stops on the way (sticky rice, donuts, and sometimes a the pagoda). The reason we leave slightly later is so we can try to catch the beginning of the sunset which sets later during this time of the year.
The boat departs from the community tourism community tourism dock at the very beginning of the village. This is because the water is very high and the road to Kompong Khleang is no longer accessible by car. This is great for tourists as it allows us to take a boat through the entire floating village (vs. leaving from the center of the village during the dry season).
In September, we will stay on the lake for most but not all of the sunset. This is because it sets late (which would mean arriving in Siem Reap very late). That being said, on the boat ride back, you will still be able to see the entire sunset if it’s not cloudy.
We will go to the beginning of the Tonle Sap Lake but not too far out as it can be choppy this time of year. The boat driver will make that determination.
We will get back to the community tourism dock between 6:15 – 6:30pm depending on the quality of the sunset. As a result, we will arrive in Siem Reap a bit later – usually around 7:30pm.
As you can see, the September 2018 tour is essentially the same as listed on our website. The differences are logistical in nature – we take a boat from the beginning floating village, we visit the beginning of the Tonle Sap, and we stay for most of but not all of the sunset. That being said the the tour itinerary is exactly the same and, with high water levels, this is truly the best time of year to visit Kompong Khleang.
If you have questions about how we will be conducting the tour on a particular date feel free to email us in advance and we’ll be able to provide more information. Thanks again for taking time to read this blog post and for your willingness to support Community First: Kompong Khleang Floating Village Tours.