Tonle Sap Lake

The Tonle Sap is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia and one of the richest fishing inland waters of the earth.

boat trip on Tonle Sap LakeAt the Tonle Sap lake, every year in June you can also watch a unique natural phenomenon.

Due to the monsoon rains and the melt water from the Himalayas to the Mekong, Tonle Sap contains four times more water than in the months leading up to this time of year which have very little rain.

Cambodia is largely a very flat and level land, and the water of the Mekong urges into Tonle Sap in the rainy season and this will change the direction of flow.

These water masses are pushing back into the basin of the Tonle Sap and fill the lake.

water dwelling tonle sap lake in cambodiaDuring the dry season, the lake has a surface area from 2600 to 3000 km².

tonle sap and floating villageIn the rainy season, the surface area increases to approximately 10,400 km².

The highlight of the flooding is achieved in September. Only in November of the river changes direction again and the water from the lake flows slowly out.

This has given rise to the so-called hard water and starts the fishing season in Cambodia.

The lake and the rivers also serve as roads. There is a speedboat connection which links the cities of Siem Reap, the capital Phnom Penh and Battambang.

Cambodia’s floating villages:

tonle sap village boat tourThere are three floating villages in Tonle Sap Lake near Siem Reap, which are worth a visit.
Chong Khneas:
Kompong Phluk:
Kompong Khleang:


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