Lo and behold, I present you the enchanted flooded forest of Kampong Phluk! This is the magical place that I wanted to be, the place that I wanted to visit so much, the reason why I chose to visit Siem Reap, Cambodia besides for its magnificent temples and jungle ruins. This was the highlight of my trip to Siem Reap, Cambodia!
Like A Page Out Of A Fairytale Book
What can be more soothing and enchanting than to cruise leisurely along a labyrinth of partly submerged living trees in the quiet countryside, connecting and feeling one with Mother Nature? It was at the flooded forest of Kampong Phluk, Siem Reap that I embraced my inner child and escaped into a world of fairytale that came to life.
As my sister and I cruised along the enchanted flooded forest, I felt just like Disney’s Pocahontas; a strong and free-spirited character with utmost respect and love for nature and the land around her. With the soft breeze caressing our face, the canopy of foliage above us provided shade from the sun’s rays; occasionally slipping through the leaves to create a wonderful ambience for us to enjoy. Like a little girl, I was overjoyed by the wonderful sight and was humming to the tune of “The Colours of the Wind” by Vanessa Williams as we explored the flooded forest.
A Scenic Small Boat a.k.a “Sampan” Ride Through The Flooded Forest
After our humbling visit to the floating village of Kampong Phluk, our young captain brought us to a floating structure located nearby the village. Right next to it was the much anticipated flooded forest of Kampong Phluk. The floating structure was the ticketing station for the small boat a.k.a “sampan” ride into the flooded forest. Many visitors were seen buying the tickets and waiting in line to get on-board their small boat a.k.a “sampan” for an unforgettable ride of their lifetime to one of the most scenic spots in Siem Reap, Cambodia and Asia.
My sister and I effortlessly purchased the tickets and paid $5 each for the additional 15-20 minutes small boat ride through the flooded forest of Kampong Phluk. There was no camera/photography fee which is a good thing. We boarded our “sampan” and began our exploration in less than a minute. Our elderly guide spoke very little English and was not interested to make small talk with us, but that did not bother us for we had a fun time enjoying the view and taking beautiful photographs.
As we cruised in between the submerged trees, we met several other visitors who were travelling in groups. Our guide was kind enough to paddle at a slow and steady pace, making sure that we enjoyed the ride and was able to take good photos. If one is lucky or unlucky, animals such as snakes or monitor lizards can be seen swimming past the boats. We passed by a man-made structure that looks like a platform walk and what seems like a restaurant in the air too. Time passed by quickly when we are having a good time and before we know it, it was time for us to head back to our big boat. We thanked our guide and gave her a $1 tip for her hard work.
Walking Amongst The Trees and A Visit To The Sky Restaurant & Bar
Besides cruising through the enchanted flooded forest of Kampong Phluk, to our delight, my sister and I got to walk amongst the trees, on the sky-high platform walk above and if we wish, have lunch at the Sky Restaurant & Bar.
After our short but memorable boat ride through the enchanted flooded forest, our young captain brought us to the flight of stairs where the sky-high platform walk begins and ends. The platform walk is free. Without hesitation, we left the boat and walked through the scenic sky-high path, enjoying the view along the way. A certain section of the path had trees with autumn-coloured leaves in hues of red, yellow and orange! It was a beautiful sight! My sister and I took several pretty photos of it.
At the middle of the platform walk was a nicely decorated restaurant and bar where visitors can wine and dine as they please while enjoying the view from above. The place looks like the perfect place for an exotic wedding venue or a quiet gathering with family members or a bunch of friends.
In A Nut Shell
After that, my sister and I made our way back to our boat and back to our tuk tuk for our journey back to Siem Reap town. We passed by the flooded forest and floating village again for the last time and bid farewell to it. That concluded our enlightening journey to the floating village and flooded forest of Kampong Phluk, Siem Reap, but our adventures in Siem Reap are yet to come to an end.
Up next: A traditional Khmer full body massage, Cambodian steamboat dinner and sightseeing in Siem Reap town!