Angkor Wat

Picture of Angkor Wat.

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:

Picture of temple.

Angkor Wat is one of the world's most beautiful and famous temples.

Picture of folks.

I joined a few hundred other people to watch the sun rise behind the ruins.

Picture of stairs.

Here's the stairway to the top of the temple.

Picture of Katie.

Katie takes a well-deserved break during our visit.

Picture of columns.

Many columns encapsulate the central courtyard.

Picture of carving.

A vandal broke in and carved up the wall.

Picture of carvings.

Some of the carvings have been pieced together.

Picture of face.

The Bayon temple is famous for its faces carved out of the stone.

Picture of dancers.

Intricate carvings abound.

Picture of book.

A certain guidebook was very popular, and the price was a steal.

Picture of carving.

The hunt is on.

Picture of smirkers.

Some carvings are much older than others.

Picture of tree.

At Ta Prohm, the trees grow from the stones.

Picture of Ta Keo.

Relaxing atop Ta Keo at the end of the day.

Picture of rubble.

The ruins were walkable, but not fully restored, making everyone feel like an explorer.

Picture of stupa.

Many temples have stupas, representing male genitalia, in the center.

Picture of kicker.

High kick!

Picture of monk.

An old lady selling handicrafts at Preah Khan.

Picture of ladies.

The Hall of the Dancing Ladies.

Picture of Acropolis.

Romanesque columns.

Picture of lions.

Lions protect the entrance to many temples.

Picture of monk.

A praying monk.

Picture of kids.

Kids playing at Ta Som.

Picture of Pre Rup.

A final sunset viewing at Pre Rup.

There rest of my photos from Angkor Wat are here.

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