Friday, March 11th ~ Siem Reap
The ancient city of Angkor, was once the capital of the Khmer Empire. The city contained hundreds of temples and held a population possibly over one million people, making it the largest city in the world during the Industrial Revolution! The largest and most well-known temple is Angkor Wat.
“Angkor Archaeological Park contains the magnificent remains of the different capitals of the Khmer Empire, from the 9th to the 15th century. They include the famous Temple of Angkor Wat and, at Angkor Thom, the Bayon Temple with its countless sculptural decorations.” ~ World Heritage Convention
We took over 400 pictures today and it is impossible to properly sort them all down in the small amount of time I have left this evening before getting some much-needed sleep. So I have decided to just post a few favorites this evening from just the first temple to give you a sneak peek. I will attempt to do a more in-depth post at some time in the future to give this magnificent site the attention it deserves.
Angkor Wat (Temple City or Capital Temple) has been a major tourist destination in Cambodia since 1990. A UNESCO World Heritage site, it is the largest religious monument in the world, covering approximately 500 acres. It as build roughly between 1113 and 1150.
We also visited Angkor Thom (Bayon), Banteay Srey and Pre Rup Temple, but I will have to post pictures from each place in a future post as it is almost time to jump on the bus and I have not showered and packed yet. In the meantime, you can check out each link if you are interested in reading about them.
Known as the “Great City”
This 10th century temple is dedicated to the Hindu god, Shiva. It is unique in using red or pink sandstone that lends itself to the elaborate decorative wall carvings. One of the favorite temples it is often called “precious gem” or “jewel of Khmer art”.
“The temple’s name is a comparatively modern one meaning “turn the body”. This reflects the common belief among Cambodians that funerals were conducted at the temple, with the ashes of the body being ritually rotated in different directions as the service progressed.” ~ Wikipedia
GRATITUDE MOMENT: Today I am so grateful to have had a long time dream fulfilled to visit and explore Angkor Wat. The temples and structures are awe-inspiring, memorable and something to be experienced for yourself.