The boat ride from Battambang to Siem Reap, albeit much longer and less efficient than the bus (especially at this time of year when the water is extremely low), provides a fascinating journey through the beautiful Cambodian countryside. The sites to be seen are never-ending, and the photo opportunities abundant.
We passed through numerous floating towns – some are huge – and also small villages and farm houses dotted along the river.
Some of the people seem to live in tiny boats, others live in floating houses, or houses built on stilts for when the water is higher. There are also numerous fishing contraptions dotted along the river – though these don’t seem to be in operation at the moment because of the low season. See below picture:
Exploring Cambodia by boat really provides an interesting insight into rural life along the river, and the 10+ hour journey is well worth taking a day to do.
Do make sure you do this trip when it’s not New Year, or when the water is higher… The boat dumped us off far away from Siem Reap (because the water had completely dried up the rest of the way). This, as well as it being New Year (most of the tuk-tuk drivers were at home getting drunk), meant that it was extremely difficult to get into the centre – which was a 15km drive away. Luckily, myself and 2 others got lucky and we managed to find a willing driver – we guiltily left the other passengers behind – they could have waited hours! Despite this, it was an extremely fascinating and action-filled day.