Pritam Rohila Travels

Reports of my travels along with some pictures

Jun 6, 2012


This morning we left for Angkor Wat monuments. Having remained undiscovered until a French naturalist stumbled onto them in 1861, they are the major tourist attraction in the area.

Angkor Wat Archaeological Park is a 37-mile complex of temples, palaces, passageways and moats. It is the world’s largest religious monument complex ever constructed.

At the ticket booth, we posed for mandatory photographs. Photos are printed directly on the tickets, so that officials can verify the identity of the ticket-holders, at entry point to each part of the vast archaeological complex.

Mr. Muy, our guide advised us that, because of the light conditions, we should start our sight-seeing at Angkor Thom and do Angkor Wat in the afternoon.

Angkor Thom covers over a square mile and consists of several renowned sites. Literally meaning “the great city,” it was part of the new capital city built by Jayavarman VII (1190), after the nearby Angkor Wat had been sacked by Champs from Central Vietnam, about 27 years after the death of its builder, Suryavarman II.

Like other sites in the Angkor Wat complex, the mythical Hindu story about the Creation of the Universe, marks each entry to the site. The right side of the causeway leading to the gate has gods
holding the tail of the serpent, Sesh Nag, while on the left side demons hold the serpent’s head ready to start churning the Celestial Ocean of Milk.

We entered the site through the South Gate.

The 148-ft high central temple of Bayon, is the main attraction of the area. Although it is a Buddhist temple, its construction adheres to the Hindu cosmology.

It has four huge smiling stone faces, one for each compass point. There are 51 smaller towers, each with its own four faces.
The walls bear bas-relief scenes of celestial dancers as well as...
...legendary and historic events.

There is also a Buddha shrine.

All sorts of visitors come here.

Before reaching our next stop, we encountered some shops, and a group of musicians.

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