We have traveled from Cambodia to Vietnam, using the Jahan as our vessel of exploration, but this morning, we added yet another vehicle. Chau Doc has hybridized the cyclo into their own version of transport, a trishaw. Everyone boarded their own trishaw and bicycled around the downtown area with our destination being a local market. Pans, tanks, trays, and baskets were filled with live fish, prawns, dried fish, pounded seasoned fish, fish paste, and all manner of familiar and not so familiar vegetables. A floating fish farm was next on our docket with a new mode of transport: a sampan. Each day of our journey as we explore the diverse sights, sounds, and flavors of Cambodia and Vietnam comes with a unique and innovative vehicle of exploration as well.
On board Jahan , we started the day early with a pre-breakfast oxcart ride along the banks of the Tonle Sap River at Kampong Tralach. We stopped to photograph lotus fields along the way before continuing to the village to visit the Green School, a local school offering free English lessons and other classes for K-12-aged students. Lindblad/National Geographic has a long-standing relationship with the school and was instrumental in its creation. We returned to Jahan for breakfast followed by tai chi on the terrace deck and a fashion show with the crew about traditional Cambodian clothing. Before lunch, we all went out on deck to watch the ship navigate a 90-degree turn. Our naturalist, Anna, gave a talk about the Tonle Sap Lake and the Mekong River. During the afternoon, we took local tuk-tuks through the village of Kampong Laeang to visit a local pottery artisan. Afterward, we learned about the production of traditional Khmer noodles (num banh chok) that have been made in the area for over 4,000 years. We also learned about palm sugar production along with a demonstration.