Photographer's Note

‘Kompong Phluk in the dry season’

Quite recently, Ian (ifege) showed us several pictures of Kompong Phluk village that is located in the vicinity of Siem Reap.
Ian was there in the beginning of December, still early in the dry season, while the water level in and around the Tonlé Sap lake was still quite high. That was also the case in Kompong Phluk, which is situated close to the lake.
I was there at the end of January, the middle of the dry season.
Nowhere in Kompong Phluk was there any water detected. Even the lake had receded to quite a distance from the village.

How can this be explained?

The Tonlé Sap Lake in the Cambodian Plain is a lake that covers about 7,5% of the country's surface.

The lake covers about 2.590 square kilometers in the dry season, but swells in the rainy season to an area of 24.605 square kilometers. That is almost 10 times as large.
During the dry season, water flows out of the lake via the Tonlé Sap River in the Mekong near Phnom Penh.
However, during the rainy season the water level in the Mekong is so high that the water from the Mekong flows through that river into the lake and makes Tonlé Sap temporarily the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia.

The view of Kompong Phluk is therefore totally determined by the season. In the dry season, instead of canals with stilt houses, you will find the same houses built on very high stilts standing on a sandy or dusty terrain.

The spaces under the houses are often used as a storage place for anything and everything and as a meeting place for the residents.

Kompong Phluk is one of those places where I came to the conclusion that you should actually be able to visit it in both seasons.
I had not heard of the village before I started my journey. In Seam Reap I read that it was an interesting village full of stilt houses and decided to visit it. Great was my surprise when I found these high stilt houses without water underneath.
I couldn't imagine what it would look like with water in the streets. Back home I looked up photos on internet and noticed that the village is twice a year undergoing a complete transformation.
Moreover, those houses were built on very high stilts. I couldn't possibly imagine that the water level could be that high. Yet it is so.


Over the years several TE-members have already uploaded pictures of this village on stilts. It is a pity to see that these photos can be found under six different names (usually with only one or two letters different).
I wonder what is so difficult about writing the name of a place correctly? Few turn out to check afterwards whether their picture is properly uploaded or don’t like to correct the error.

Photo Information
  • Copyright: Paul VDV (PaulVDV) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6096 W: 22 N: 14493] (57655)
  • Genre: Lieux
  • Medium: Couleur
  • Date Taken: 2020-01-29
  • Exposition: f/0.1, 30 secondes
  • Versions: version originale, Workshop
  • Date Submitted: 2021-04-25 15:19
Viewed: 0
Points: 54
Additional Photos by Paul VDV (PaulVDV) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6096 W: 22 N: 14493] (57655)
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