First sunset at Angkor Wat

Siem Reap Travel Blog

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The more famous images of Angkor Wat

We took the Mekong Express bus service to Siem Reap this morning, and it was the best bus in Asia so far; our bags were checked in, tagged and we were shown to our seat by a hostess. We couldn't cope.  We set off punctually at 7.30am, waved off by the 'team' on the pavement!  It was a pleasant journey, during which we were even given a snack and some commentary on passing landmarks.  We stopped about half way for a toilet break,  during which Carol had to remind the Chinese woman who had pushed to the front of the toilet queue that actually, she was there first. 

We arrived in Siem Reap at lunchtime, with much more of a laid back feel to it than Phnom Penh.  We arrived at our guest house for the next few days: La Villa Loti, set in a lovely tropical garden, with rooms/balconies overlooking.

At the entrance to Angkor Wat
  After a bite to eat, our tuk-tuks came back to take us to Angkor Wat for sunset.  We were expecting great things of Angkor Wat; it is after all supposedly the world's largest religious building.  It was quite exciting as we drove up to it, especially when we saw monkeys by the roadside!  It was a slight anti-climax when we arrived,  as we could only see the large towers peeping over the top of the walled entrance.

The temples of Angkor date back to AD802-1432, a period of history that established the Khmer empire as one of the most powerful of SE Asia.  The Cambodian god-kings each strove to build temples bigger and grander than before, culminating in Angkor Wat and the walled city of Angkor Thom.

The moat
 

Our drivers dropped us off and we walked over the moat towards the entrance.  Even the moat puts the ones in Europe to shame: it forms a huge rectangle measuring 1.5km by 1.3km and is nearly 200m wide.  Once we got onto the inner causeway, it looked much more impressive, making the people who were swarming all over it look tiny.  Most people seemed to be making their way out, so the last hour before it shut was relatively quiet.  We wandered around the inner temple, and watched people climbing the very steep stairs up to the central tower.   We weren't allowed any further as they were starting to close.  More on Angkor Wat in the next few days.

Diane was sick when we got back so didn't join us in the garden for a meal and a good bottle of wine, much to her dismay.

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The more famous images of Angkor W…
The more famous images of Angkor …
At the entrance to Angkor Wat
At the entrance to Angkor Wat
The moat
The moat
Inside Angkor Wat
Inside Angkor Wat
The entrance to Angkor Wat
The entrance to Angkor Wat
Siem Reap
photo by: genetravelling