Once you have seen Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, Cambodia, you wonder ‘What next?’ Siem Reap Floating Villages – that is where you should head next once you have seen the largest religious monument in the world.
The rural communities in Cambodia which are settled on the shores of Tonle Sap Lake have lately become a huge rave among the tourists. Anyone who visits Cambodia makes it a point to join the fascinating floating village Siem Reap Tour.
The fascinating tour feels like walking through a museum where you get an eye-opening story of this Southeast Asian country. Each village narrates a different story giving you a sense of humanity and gratitude for life.
The eco-tours of floating villages in Siem Reap are the most authentic tours you will ever take because nothing you see here is staged or fake. What you see is what’s real!
If dining on a floating restaurant and shopping from the floating markets piques your interest, then hop onto one of the memorable experiences Cambodia has to offer to you.
4 Siem Reap Floating Villages
There are mainly four floating villages around Siem Reap. You can contact travel operators in Siem Reap to book a floating village tour for you.
1. Chong Khneas
Chong Khneas is the nearest village to Siem Reap, located at a distance of approximately 16 km. The village dwells with stilted and floating houses which keeps moving according to the level of water.
You will be surprised to find a floating school and even a church because God and education don’t find an excuse to be prevalent even in the most difficult areas. Do not get scared if you also find crocodiles dilly-dallying in the muddy water of this Tonle Sap Floating Village.
If you want to stay longer, you can dine at the local Korean restaurants and shop local artifacts from the floating markets.
Chong Khneas is a gateway to Battambang and Phnom Penh (the capital of Cambodia). So, if these places are on your itinerary, it is best you travel by boat to have a unique experience.
Price: $15 per person
Duration: 15 minutes
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2. Kampong Phluk
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Another floating village near Siem Reap, Kampong Phluk literally means ‘harbor of tusks’. It is 30 km from Siem Reap and can easily be managed in a half-day trip. The community in this village thrives on catching fish and shrimp.
Instead of rearing hens and common livestock, the villages here rear crocodiles. Absurd, right? Not for them though. You can even enjoy a rare delicacy ‘crocodile meat’ at one of the floating restaurants here only if you think you can stomach something as absurd as this.
For extra few bucks, you can meander in the thick mangrove forests which are a true gem of these villages. It is a great place to invest some time in nature photography.
Price: $20 – $25 per person
Duration: It can easily be managed in a half-day trip.
3. Kampong Khleang
Kampong Khleang or ‘harbor warehouse’ feels like another world which will inundate your heart with mixed emotions. Rather a cluster of three villages; Kampong Khleang, Chong Prolay, and an ethnic Vietnamese floating village, the village is resided by 6,000 Cambodians.
The colorfully painted stilt village is 50 km from Siem Reap. As you enter the village, a beautiful blue lake welcomes you. Looking at the villagers carrying on their daily routine you will develop a true appreciation for life and hard work.
It is the only floating village in Cambodia where the villages are benefited from the ecotourism. Since there are concrete roads leading to this village, you can either take a tuk-tuk and then hire a boat in the village or you directly sign up with the tour operators.
Price: $20 per person
Duration: 1 hour
Mechrey is a lesser-known of all Siem Reap floating villages which is why you will find fewer tourists here. It is 25 km southwest of Siem Reap and is a gateway to a wildlife sanctuary. The tuk-tuk ride from Siem Reap to Mechrey is a picturesque one.
Discover the unique lifestyle of people at this floating village. The front of the floating houses is adorned with beautiful plants and verandas stocked with woodpile. You will even find animals living under the floating houses.
The bizarre attractions of this village are the floating garden and floating cemetery which really look surreal. You can also donate rice to the orphans here and do a good deed.
There is an immense forest area which is a habitat of hundreds of species of birds where you can do some nature photography. On your way back, you can stop at Artisans Angkor and buy some handicraft souvenirs from your trip.
Siem Reap Floating Villages are an eye-opener and if nothing they will at least teach you gratitude. The villages paint a contrasting picture of the life that we live outside of Cambodia. If you have been living in your own bubble of urban and luxurious lifestyle, go check these floating villages near Siem Reap and get a new perspective on life.
Whether you are going with your family or heading solo, Siem Reap Floating Villages is a destination worth exploring. Get this added to customized Cambodia Tour Packages with TravelTriangle.