Cambodia Day 4: Sticky Rice Cakes, Handmade Cambodian Donuts, and Floating Village Tour!

in travel •  last year 

Our Last Full Day in Cambodia

Alright, I'm a little late getting this blog up. I'm sitting here at 10:15am and our tuk tuk driver gets here at 11:30am to take us to the airport to catch our flight to Laos. But I never posted about our adventures from yesterday which were incredible. So here they are...

After a quick lunch, we took off on our tour of Kompong Khleang, the largest floating village in Siem Reap. It's situated about 55km outside of the city, and the villages are home to over 10,000 people, many of whom have been living there for generations.

On our Way to the village, we stopped along our route to try out the traditional Cambodian foods. One of those being sticky rice cakes. This is not cake as Americans would know it. But rather a snack which is stuffed inside a bamboo shoot and cooked. The ingredients are sticky rice, sweet coconut cream, black beans, and a little salt and sugar, which are all packed into the shoot with banana leaves. It was warm, sweet, savory, sticky, and delicious!

Next we stopped at a little bakery where people work all day long producing the most irresistible snack in all of Cambodia. And I have to say, they make great use of the rice in these parts. These little donuts are made up of mostly rice and they could definitely compete with Dunkin or Krispy Kreme LOL.

We even got to see how they make all of the different varieties of the donuts and cakes...

Kompong Khleang

After we had our bellies filled with these sweet treats (and believe me when I say I had more than my fair share), we headed on down the road towards the village. I was excited to see how these people lived. I always find it fascinating to see how happy, healthy, and full people can live on so little. In the US we complain about a delayed Amazon package if it's one day late. Most of these people don't even have phone service, or running water. They get everything they need from the Tonli Sap lake. And this works perfectly for them.


Local school for kids up to 7 years old


Most of the proceeds from our tour went right back into this school


View from the school building

Now you may be wondering, why are the houses so high up? This is because during the rainy season (which is just now starting) the river will rise all the way up to the bottom of these houses. They will then use boats to get to and from their homes. Some houses also were on floats so they rise and fall with the river.

Boat ride to Tonli Sap Lake

Next we took a boat out onto the lake. This lake is VERY important to these people. Not only is it transportation, but it's also a means for food and commerce. The waters and everything they hold are what have allowed generations to prosper here.


Our fellow tourmates


When we finally arrived at the lake it looked like an ocean!

After our tour, we had a 1hr 20 minute ride back into town. We were pretty tired which is why I didn't get this post up last night. But we had an incredible time and we were so glad we decided to take this tour. If you visit Cambodia, I highly recommend booking this tour through Community First which is a non-profit tour company. All profits went right back into the community which is awesome!

Well.. now it's time to get packed up for our next country. Later today we'll land in Laos!! I can't wait to see what it holds for us. Until then, និយាយ​គ្នា​ពេល​ក្រោយ (talk to you later)!

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So cool Brandon! Those donuts looked yummy! The sticky rice did too! Those were raisins on it right, or some cool insect? lol

LOL an insect wouldn't be out of the ordinary for sure haha. But those were little black beans mixed in with the rice. It was really good. I'm sure roasting the bamboo shoots over the hot coals gives it a lot of the flavor. I'm not a cook or chef by any means, but I can definitely appreciate the art of it. One of my favorite things about traveling is trying the different foods, even if it means spending the rest of the day in the bathroom.

hahaha glad to hear it wasn't a black insect. Ahh little black beans! very cool! I think I had a similar thing in the Philippines. Yes I would love to travel and take my cooking show with me, and instead of me being the chef, I would just be the host, and show people how food is made, it would be so cool. I will admit, while living in the Philippines I spend lots of time in the bathroom. LOL Have fun! I can't remember, how much longer is your trip?

That would be cool - the traveling chef! :)

Btw, you won today's random comment upvote on this post. So your comment above will receive an upvote shortly. Thanks again for commenting and sharing in the conversation here. Much more travels to share ahead!

Yeah it would be so fun to be a traveling Chef haha. Oh wow! That is so cool, I kind of forgot that you did those, a nice surprise for sure! :) Thanks! Of course it is fun following you around on your adventure! Makes me want to go on one! My parents are getting into town this weekend, and we are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary up in Pinetop/Lakeside over the 4th of July. Should be fun! It will also be a mini family reunion, my brother and his family are flying in from Atlanta, and then all my other siblings will be there as well. :)

Makes me feel like whenever i would pack my bags, i would look into your blog and find where to head to...

Lol yeah come on and follow us!! 😁

I think I had something similar to the sticky rice cake once. It was good but tasted so...very different to what I was expecting that it took me a little while to convince myself that it really was good!

Looks like you're feeling better from your cold.

The houses up on stilts are amazing! I'm trying to imagine how mothers keep their toddlers from taking a lot of nasty tumbles during low water time. You said to school was for kids up to 7 - what age do they start?

Yeah, we were really expecting something more sweet. But it was just sweet enough to bring out the taste of the rice and beans. Nice little treat.

I'm really trying not to jinx myself, but today I haven't coughed much at all. I hope this is the end of it!!

I can't remember what age they start. But after they finish here, they go on to other schools in the city if they can afford it. Most of the kids don't even continue education and instead begin fishing with their parents... at a really young age. We saw a lot of kids working hard with their parents. The kind of work I've never seen an American kid do lol.

I've travelled parts of asia but Cambodia and Laos have eluded me. Seems like you're having a blast!

We've really enjoyed it here. I would definitely recommend Cambodia. The people have probably been the kindest here of all the places we've been so far. Very accommodating and aiming to please.

Again awesome blog with a lot of useful information for all of us about Combodia.
By the way @brandonfrye how are you now? Got relief from cough?

Hah, trying not to jinx myself... but I haven't coughed much at all today. Last night was a different story. It went on for about 2 hours straight before bed. I'm hoping my body will acclimate to the poor air quality soon.

@brandonfrye hope u will get well soon and post some more interesting blogs with fabulous pictures like this and hope next time their should be no need of medicine to you.

Yesterday was definitely another fun filled day for you. Its amazing how happy they are living on so little! Those tiny donuts look like they are gonna taste delicious but I don't know about that rice cake though... wishing you a safe trip to Laos

Very well written blog @brandonfrye sir, brought back so many memories from my trip to vietnam, had sticky rice cake in vietnam which was different from cambodian one in appearance but I'm sure they taste pretty much the same #nostalgic gutted that I missed out on cambodia.