It’s the time of the year again in Cambodia when, during the rainy season, the Tonle Sap Lake changes its size making it the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia.

Each year when the monsoon season begins, the waters from the Mekong river reverses to the Tonle Sap Lake, increasing its size to tenfold and engulfing the surrounding forests. Hence, the name, flooded forests. An example of which is shown in this picture:

The submerged forests are rich breeding grounds for fish and other aquatic resources. Photo taken at Prek Pnov, Kandal Province.

As the Mekong flood water abates around November each year, the Tonle Sap water reverses and the fish swim out.  This reversal of the current is marked and celebrated  by holding Bon Oum Teuk, or Water Festival, in Phnom Penh. It is a national celebration and is the merriest and rowdiest celebrations, next to the Khmer New Year.

Share in top social networks!


  1. Hi, I’ve been to Cambodia and I’ve read books about it, the ruins, the Mekong and Tonle Sap. Your photo is so lovely which if not explained looks like a lake instead of a flood. thanks.

  2. An occasion to enjoy!

  3. the photo is astounding!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *