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Tonle Sap Lake Siem Reap

Tonle Sap is also the second most famous destination in Siem Reap, after Angkor Wat. Its impression by the floating villages on the river, creating a poetic and lyrical scene combined with the most vibrant ecosystems, housing of many different species of wildlife in and around the lake.

Be a system that combines lakes and rivers, playing an important role in Cambodia. Tonle Sap was formed around 5500 BC because of the collision of the Indian subcontinent with Asia. This is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia and recognized by UNESCO as a world biosphere reserve in 1997. Tonle Sap means "Big freshwater river" but is normally translated as "Big lake" in another languages. "Biển Hồ" is a Vietnamese way of calling a large size of this lake.

Tonle Sap Lake

Tonle Sap Lake


There are some floating villages where the people live on the lake. Although it is not as modern and spacious as on the land there are also schools, medical station, temples,... Sitting on a scenic boat is one of the interesting experiences when travelling there. Visitors can be drifted on a quiet lake, enjoy the cool breeze and learn about people's life or visiting some famous fishing villages around like Chong Khneas, Kampong Phluk,...

The local people are fishermen and they are really friendly, visitors can stop at local family and enjoy a home-cooked lunch in the stilted family house. This is a chance to enjoy the culture typical of the cuisine in Tonle Sap. Attractive dishes made from fresh fishes caught in the lake will make a memorable meal for visitor.

Local life in Tonle Sap Lake

Tonle Sap Lake


Tonle Sap Lake is best experienced on the boast journey from Siem Reap to Battambang. Located in Siem Reap province and about 25km from the city centre. Visitors can easily travel to Tonle Sap lake in just one afternoon, taking 30 minutes driving by car. Boat trips are recommended only during Monsoon season as many spots become too shallow for the boat.

Tonle Sap Lake Map

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