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OMG!! This is the 10th post of Angkor Adventures!! And still stuck on Day 2. I must have been over-elaborated. :p
No trip is complete without visiting this temple, Angkor Wat. It’s akin to Beijing’s Palace Museum (Forbidden City), so it’s not surprising when Angkor Wat is the most publicized temple in the world. In fact, Angkor Wat is a landmark of Cambodia. It’s embedded on the Cambodia national flag. It’s being mentioned worldwide. And it’s the reason why people, tourists like us come here all the way from around the world.
The crowd already building when we reached Angkor Wat. According to John, evening is the most appropriate time to visit this temple especially when the sun is setting down. The whole temple will be basked in golden hue, which is perfect for photography. Apart from this, the temple will be reflected in different colors at different time. This made Angkor Wat itself unique from the rest of the temples.
I missed out a lot on John’s explanation as I was too busy with my camera. :p
Angkor Wat (or Angkor Vat) is a temple at Angkor, Cambodia, built for King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century as his state temple and capital city. The largest and best-preserved temple at the site, it is the only one to have remained a significant religious centre since its foundation—first Hindu, dedicated to Vishnu, then Buddhist. [Source]
## Don’t worry, I leave the history of Angkor Wat for you to find out. I won’t elaborate much on the temple itself since this is going to be another long post.
We caught up with John who paced in front of us whenever we walked. He stopped to let us take more photos.
We continued our walk and went past the outer enclosure, only to be greeted by another long pathway.
It didn’t take us long before we reached the exact place where ALL photographers stood. It was the best spot to take photos of the grand Angkor Wat.
How do you like this stunning piece of masterpiece? [Wallpaper (3008 x 2000)]
A closer look. Nice? [Wallpaper (3008 x 2000)]
Soon, we made it to the North wing of Angkor Wat.
The north wing features an exquisite bas-relief carvings which depicts the Battle of Lanka.
I didn’t really listened to John as he over-elaborated in some of stories which kinda put me off. Anyway, he did a good job in explaining. He was able to answer most of our questions and doubts which have been lingering over our minds.
On the way to the second level enclosure, we stopped by this cruciform cloister or Hall of Thousand Buddhas. The cruciform cloister features four basins which were originally filled with water. Besides, there are a lot of carvings inscribed on the walls which are worth a look.
We finally reached the second level enclosure only to be greeted by this spectacular view – the massif of the central towers rising from the courtyard.
Of course, we almost fainted upon seeing the stairs. So steep!
As we seated at the courtyard to get some rest, I was undecided whether to climb because I was tired and the stairs looked scary to me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not coward. It’s just tiredness in me which almost made me gave up.
But I knew I didn’t come so far just to sit down, so I decided to climb and even spurred my buddies to go on. After all, we have came so far.
And off we went…
It was not that hard after all. I guess we deserve the award “Stair-Climbing Expert” after a series of stair climbing lessons. LOL!
Anyway, the view from above was amazing!
This inner gallery, called the Bakan, is a 60 m square with axial galleries connecting each gopura with the central shrine, and subsidiary shrines located below the corner towers. The roofings of the galleries are decorated with the motif of the body of a snake ending in the heads of lions or garudas. [Source]
We uncovered more carvings on the walls, and they look impressive.
We had our time at the top, there were less people now as most of them have descended. We sat down trying to relax our minds.
But this is how I relax….
We finally left when the sky was getting darker. It was rather a long walk back to where we began but we truly enjoyed it. Thus, this ended our invasion of temples in Angkor Archaeological Park. There are more to explore, but time doesn’t allow. I hope I can return some day to explore more temples.
Next up.. Nightlife at Siem Reap town
Siem Reap Day 2: Angkor Wat