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La Résidence d'Angkor

Temples of Angkor

The temples of Angkor are scattered throughout the Angkor Archaeological Park, which is easily accessed from the town of Siem Reap.

Visitors will find over one hundred stone temples, from immense pyramid-like structures in locally made bricks, laterite or dark grey sandstone to small shrines, delicately carved in pink sandstone.  Beautifully restored temples sit alongside barely recognisable mounds of rubble. Each temple complex has its own beauty, its own secrets and its own atmosphere.

 

Angkor Wat

The Temple of Angkor Wat was dedicated to the Hindu God Vishnu by King Suryavarman II, who reigned between AD 1131 and 1150. Constructed over a period of 30 years, it illustrates some of the most beautiful examples of Khmer and Hindu art. Undoubtedly the most important religious building in Cambodia, it is not only the focus of many foreign tourists to the region, but still attracts pilgrims from across Cambodia.

Recognised as a superlative example of Khmer architecture, it is a massive pyramid of sandstone blocks intricately carved in bas-relief. Covering an area of about 81 hectares, the complex consists of five towers, which are depicted on the Cambodian national flag. In 1992, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee declared the monument and the whole ancient city of Angkor a World Heritage Site.

 

Ta Prohm

Ta Prohm is a very early temple-monastery, thought to have been built for the Royal Family.  Following the demise of the Khmer empire this temple fell into disrepair and has been largely overtaken by the jungle in which it sits. The site has not been reconstructed or restored in any way, but it has been made safe for visitors and further decay prevented where possible.

It is said that the carved faces were modelled on the family members of King Jayavarman VII, who commissioned the original structure.

 

Other temples in the area:

Prea Khan
Well preserved with excellent carvings, this temple was built in the 12th century.

The Baphuon
This large pyramid with beautiful carvings is particularly noteworthy for the 131-foot reclining Buddha in its grounds.

Banteai Srei
A small, delicate temple, comprising several shrines within one complex, it is renowned for its exquisite carvings in pink sandstone. 

 

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