Village People

Trip Start Jun 29, 2009
Trip End Jun 29, 2010

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Flag of Cambodia  ,
Saturday, November 21, 2009

Alison: Pursat is your run of the mill Cambodian town with not an awful lot to see but many tourists come here as a base to visit the nearby floating village of Kampong Luong. We hired a tuk tuk to take us the 35km to the the village. It is quite a long journey to do on a tuk tuk but we made it with only one to stop to cool the engine down!

Kampong Luong is a Vietnamese floating village and has a huge population of 10,000 people. The village is situated on the Tonle Sap lake which is southeast Asia's largest freshwater lake. For most of the year the lake is 1m deep and covers an area of around 2700 square km but during the monsoon it grows to a massive 9m deep and 16,000 square km. The weirdest thing though is that during the dry season, the whole village is towed to a deeper part of the lake! This is no mean feat considering the population and the size of the village.

When we arrived at the lake, we hired a boat and a driver for 2 hours. You first travel down a thin waterway lined with shacks and then this opens out in to the main lake. The village is such a weird site. The buildings look like the ones on land but they are floating on drums. They are also lined up in rows so they sort of form 'streets'. We cruised around and we saw people going about their business just as they would on the land, except in this village they get about on boats instead of foot. Families were sat out front on their balconies, children were playing amongst themselves, and women were hanging out washing. It all looked so normal. The nice thing about the place was that there were hardly any tourists there. We only saw one westerner in the entire 2 hours. We were so glad we took the time to go. The people there were lovely. Lots of smiling faces and waving. We had a chorus of 'hello' from nearly every house :-) We saw so many things that you would never expect to see floating on a lake. My favourite was the floating pig sty and chicken coup....though the church  and temple were good.....and the petrol stations.....I loved it all!!!! Check out the photos for more floating stuff!!  

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