Visiting Kompong Luong Floating Village in Cambodia. After you have seen the temples at Angkor Wat, tanned yourselves on the beaches of Sihanoukville, and walked somberly through the Killing Fields of Phnom Penh, it is time to explore some of the other corners of Cambodia. I have seen floating villages ranging from the capital of Brunei, the Amazonian town of Iquitos, and the incredibly touristic versions outside of Bangkok. But one of my favorite floating village is the Kompong Luong, which is north of Krakor on the south-western side Tonle Sap Lake.
This is village is a living, breathing community of 1,200 families with a population of 7,000. And like any community, it has all of the moving parts that accompany that; such as temples, restaurants, petrol stations, markets, shops, a police station, a karaoke bar, and even a church. The floating village is half way between Phnom Penh and Battambang. This village is not easily accessible via public transportation with the benefit being very few tourists. There were no tourist trinkets being peddled to me during my visit.
A brief stop at the ticket office, and for $10 I was to have a private tour of the village in a long tail boat with a puttering motor. My pilot deftly steered the boat through the village for an hour as I took in the sights and smells. I was greeted with a cornucopia of smiles and waves from the local children. Grinning, I waved back in the hot afternoon heat.
The lake is lived in. I watched families cooking food in a giant cauldron, people working in shops, and monks chanting in a temple. Kids splashed in the lake. As you might imagine, there is no plumbing in the village. Outhouses dangle precipitously over the lake. The waste is dropped directly in the lake where people bathe and swim.
The tour came to an end. It was too short. There was too much to explore. I will be back in again visiting Kompong Luong Floating Village in Cambodia.
This visit came courtesy of the Cambo Challenge. My partner and I drove 1600 km across Cambodia in a tuktuk. This floating village was one of the stops on the route. Check out Hit The Road:Cambodia, an adventure-travel documentary.