Ta Prohm Temple: Framed by Gigantic Trees

Ta Phrom Temple is unique. It is famous for its wonderful huge old trees growing through, over and around the temples that are hundreds of years old.

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King Jayavarman VII built Ta Phrom Temple in 1186 AD. It was a Buddhist temple dedicated to his mother. It is one of the massive temples in the Angkor complex.

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The natural surroundings of the temple give a splendid feeling to the whole temple experience. We were amazed by the simplicity of this temple. We liked the bizarre growth of the trees; some of them have huge tall roots between which you could build a small house. We enjoyed looking at the trees growing on top of the stone walls. We savored seeing some lichens, mosses and other creeping plants delicately carved on the walls. We adored the way the roots coiling around the stone walls; it shows how nature has reclaimed the land. All these gave us a great impression and gave us a sense of how it would have looked like discovering Ta Phrom Temple for the first time after it had been abandoned for four to five hundred years. This is really something to behold.

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We went there in the afternoon. We found it a good timing because the leaves filter the sunlight and welcomed us with enough shade while casting some greenish light. We took many good pictures since the sun shone a fabulous glow on the trees and the temple.

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This ancient temple has continuously been receiving thronging crowds since parts of the Tomb Raider movie starring Angelina Jolie was filmed here. Even though it gets busier and busier as everyone wants to see the trees, everyone gets a turn and you can still find your own mysterious space and entangling roots with the temple.

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If you love history and photography and if you dream about such mysterious places, Ta Phrom is the perfect place for you.

 

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Bayon Temple: The Temple of Faces

The Bayon Temple is my most favorite temple besides Angkor Wat in the Angkor Archeological Park even though each temple has a special something. It is one of the most enigmatic and ambiguously strong religious constructions. Today, the temple is best known for the gigantic stone face sculptures.

Bayon Temple

with my sister in Bayon Temple

This was taken during my first visit in Angkor Thom in October 2010.

The Bayon Temple is located at the centre of Angkor Thom. It was built during the late 12th century and early 13th century, about 100 years after they built Angkor Wat, during the reign of the famous King Jayavarman VII. It is considered as the second most important temple in Cambodia after Angkor Wat because it is a Buddhist temple consecrated to the Buddhist cult.

Bayon Temple

My sister in Bayon Temple

Bayon Temple

As part of the Angkor Archaeological Park, Bayon Temple has been famous for its amazing collection of Buddha large, serene, smiling stone faces found on each towers. I have learned that there are about 54 towers which represent the Khmer provinces in the Great Khmer Empire period. I have also learned that there are about 200 faces which symbolize different Buddha smiling faces such as beautiful smile, glad smile, sad smile and charming smile. And, these different stone faces in the walls surely amaze each tourist.

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Visiting Bayon Temple with my sister

Bayon Temple

When we visited the Bayon Temple, I could feel the splendor and the magic from the people living during those ancient times who were able to construct all these amazing temples in the Angkor Kingdom. I loved the many smiling Buddhas in this temple. It was so peaceful and quiet. We climbed to the top of the tier of the Bayon Temple and we found great views of the tree canopy and some bird spotting. We captured a lot of beautiful pictures in there. We saw some workers who were restoring this beautiful architecture.

Bayon Temple

Bayon Temple

I would say that this place is an exceptional architectural heritage. The details that went into carving the faces from stones are spectacular. It was a unique experience and a pleasure to photograph. To me, the architecture plan is one of the greatest in the world.

It was my sister’s first time visit in Angkor Thom

Bayon Temple

Have you found the most smiling face?

Amazing Angkor Wat in Cambodia

Angkor Wat was the first temple that we visited together. It is really incredibly stunning. The temple`s size and architecture is very impressive and mind blowing. When we entered the Angkor Wat we had a mixture of feelings. It was a mixture of peace, spirituality, vastness and awe. How they built this temple in those days without any electric machinery or even iron tools really beats me. To me, it is truly amazing.

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

Taken from the top level of Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat is one of the most magnificent sights in Asia. It is very well preserved and it is considered to be the largest religious monument in the world. It is the most famous tourist destinations in Cambodia which receives around two millions of visitors each year. Today, Angkor Wat is a national pride and the symbol of Cambodia. It also became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992.

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat, which means “City of the Temple”, is one of the most magnificent examples of what early 12th century Cambodian architects could do. During those times, the Khmer kings believed that the gods would bestow great blessings on them and their kingdom if they build temples in honor to their gods. The kings also thought that the bigger the temple, the bigger the blessings they would. So, each generation of king surpassed his predecessor by building a bigger temple.

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

It was King Suryavarman II of the Khmer Empire who built the Angkor Wat at the high of classical Khmer architecture. Initially, he dedicated Angkor Wat to a supreme Hindu god, Vishnu. But the 14th century leaders switched from Hinduism to Buddhism because they thought that Hinduism was not working for them and Angkor Wat was converted then into a Buddhist shrine.

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat

My sister at the top level of the Angkor Wat

Most tourists thought that Angkor Wat is the name of the entire complex. Well, no! It is actually the main temple in the Angkor complex.

Have you been to Angkor Wat? What did you like best there?