My wife and I quite enjoyed this leisurely half day excursion after the previous 2 full days touring the Angkor Wat and surrounding Temples in high temperatures and humidity. The guide collected us from our Siem Reap hotel at 10h00 and en route to the lake pointed out the rice fields and a lotus farm to our small group. We stopped here for a short time and watched in fascination as the ladies laboriously cut the lotus stems and drew out the fibres which are made into yarn and, ultimately, clothing. On arrival at the water we boarded the boat and made our way up a rather muddy and litter-strewn creek to the main area of the lake which surprised us by being so vast - we could not see the other side. It was interesting to learn that within a few weeks the lake would become completely dry until the next rainy season. We passed many floating homes, primarily occupied by people from Vietnam, and arrived at a large platform with a souvenir shop, cafe and, surprisingly, a pen full of good-sized crocodiles taken from the lake and used for food and skins. They were kept in a rather small pen which did seem cruel but, sadly, probably no different than how some land-based farmers keep their cattle, sheep, chickens etc. We then re-boarded our boat and set off to have lunch on a nearby larger boat, the Queen Tara. Our guide took our lunch and drink orders from an extensive menu all included in the tour price and, after serving the drinks, then went off to cook the meals! This is not a fast-food restaurant and we did have to wait for some time, but in comfortable surroundings, including a hammock. The lunches were very tasty and we suffered no after ill-effects! but some of our group expressed their disappointment at not having time to navigate other parts of the lake before returning to Siem Reap However, we found it very peaceful and relaxing.and, overall, an interesting and enjoyable half day.
We did the Floating Village tour on an 8am pick up. The tour said its 4 hours, but less than 2 hours was spent actually on the lake going through the floating village and visiting the lotus and crocodile farms. The rest of the time we were on a large boat on the lake for food and drinks. No one on our tour wanted lunch at 10am but our guide basically told us we had to. It was a weird time on the boat with no extra information about the lake or the floating village from our guide, which would have been good. Our boat was also really noisy and the guide had no microphone so we couldn’t hear anything he said. Not worth the money.
The lotus farm was interesting and I enjoyed touring the floating village, although felt quite voyeuristic being so close to people's homes and the schools.
Our tour guide was very good and chatty and answered our many questions, We would give him 5 out of 5, but due to how the animals are treated on the tour I couldn't rate this any higher.
I did not like the crocodile / fish farm. The crocodiles are not treated well, they were kept in a very small area with many crocs and they had bottles in there that kids were allowed to throw at them with no barrier or staff stopping them to try and get them to move. Also there is a python is kept in a tiny box and was thrown from person to person with no instructions on how they should hold him properly. This tour is not advised for anyone who respects animals.