Day 2: A look at distant Angkor Wat from the top of Phnom Bakheng.
February 15 - 16, 2015
Days 213 - 214
For our visit to Angkor Wat and the surrounding temples, we hired a driver named Pie Ran to take us in a tuk tuk
from nearby Siem Reap. We left early, arriving at the famous Angkor Wat temple at dawn, along with several hundred others. Most of the crowd stayed near the ponds in front of the temple to get a classic sunrise photo, while we moseyed right on in, practically alone. We spent a few hours walking around before heading to the next site.
Before coming to Cambodia, I hadn't realized how many ancient sites there were near Angkor Wat. We ended up spending two days checking out the ruins, and we still didn't see nearly everything. My favorite temples were Bayon, where giant faces are carved into the stone, and Ta Prohm, where parts of the movie Tomb Raider were filmed. Almost everyone came away from their visit feeling like an explorer, myself included.
Here are a few of my photos from Angkor Wat:
Angkor Wat is one of the world's most beautiful and famous temples.
I joined a few hundred other people to watch the sun rise behind the ruins.
Here's the stairway to the top of the temple.
Katie takes a well-deserved break during our visit.
Many columns encapsulate the central courtyard.
A vandal broke in and carved up the wall.
Some of the carvings have been pieced together.
The Bayon temple is famous for its faces carved out of the stone.
Intricate carvings abound.
A certain guidebook was very popular, and the price was a steal.
The hunt is on.
Some carvings are much older than others.
At Ta Prohm, the trees grow from the stones.
Relaxing atop Ta Keo at the end of the day.
The ruins were walkable, but not fully restored, making everyone feel like an explorer.
Many temples have stupas, representing male genitalia, in the center.
An old lady selling handicrafts at Preah Khan.
The Hall of the Dancing Ladies.
Lions protect the entrance to many temples.
A praying monk.
Kids playing at Ta Som.
A final sunset viewing at Pre Rup.
There rest of my photos from Angkor Wat are here.