Kayaking through a Tonle Sap Lake Fishing Village

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day tour

Tour Level: Moderate

Tour Comfort: Superior

Tour Period: All day

tour highlights

Explore one of a selection of fascinating lakeside villages
  • Paddle along the main channel and through the local village in a kayak
  • Enjoy a delicious lunch on the veranda of a stilted house
  • Discover local customs and authentic village life

tour details

To commence your tour you’ll be collected from your hotel and transferred to a lakeside village. After kayaking the channel, you’ll tour the village and enjoy lunch on the veranda of a stilted house. Dependant on water levels you’ll visit one of the following:
Kampong Kleang Village: to adapt to fluctuating water levels, this village has built houses on 8m high stilts. During the dry season these dwellings tower above the street, whilst during the floods, the water reaches the floors. The main channel in Kampong Phluk flows through the forest to the lake. As you kayak past semi-submerged trees you’ll have a unique perspective on this fascinating habitat.
Maichrey: this floating village is clustered around an island pagoda during the floods, and is moored along a lake inlet during the ebb.

tour description

Our choice of village for the trip will depend on the water level in the lake.
Kampong Kleang Village has adapted to the rise and fall of the lake by building houses on 8m high stilts. During the dry season these dwellings become towering unearthly platforms high above the dusty street, while during the flood the water can reach the wooden floors.

The main channel in Kampong Phluk flows through dense forest to the open lake. The best time to visit is from September to March when you can see a very different way of life in the village and experience the equally different natural habitat created by the semi-submerged trees.

Maichrey is a floating village clustered round an island pagoda during the flood and moored along a lake inlet in the ebb surrounded by semi-flooded forest and circled by birds.

We visit the village on a kayak tour. You do not have to be experienced with a kayak as the boats are easy to use and the guide will run you through the basic maneuvers and go at your pace. Your guide will choose a suitable point to off load and assemble the kayaks next to the water and dependent on lake level. He will guide you through the assembly (usually about 10 minutes) and help you with the launch. You should spend a short time familiarizing yourself with the boat and paddles after which the guide will lead you down the main channel and through the village into the flooded forest or you head out to the open lake during dry season.

Summary Itinerary:
0800 Depart hotel for lakeside village
0900 Arrive and assemble kayak
0930 Set off paddling along the main channel through the village
1130 Lunch on the verandah of a stilted house 8 meters above the channel
1230 Head back along channel by motorboat
1300 Transport back to hotel
1400 Arrive hotel


  • Private transportation
  • All entrance fees for the places as mentioned in the program
  • English-speaking locally-stationed guides (guides in other languages are on request and may be subject to supplements)
  • Bottled water and cold towels


  • Surcharges for other language guides
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Personal expenditures such as drinks, souvenirs, gratuities etc.
  • Meals and services other than mentioned in the programme


Ideally a tour to the Tonle Sap Lake is only done during the high-water-level months of July to possibly mid of February. When the water is low boats may get stuck and also the distances to the floating villages increase.
    Tour code: REPINKAY

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