Exploring Angkor Wat And Bayon

by Dave on September 15, 2008 · 6 comments

Angkor Wat

We slept late, meeting downstairs at 10:30am for brunch before negotiating two motorbike-driven tuk-tuks for two days ($50 total). The lead driver, Mr. Meth, like the hotel, was a recommendation from Ross who had visited Siem Reap once before. At the ticket gate, which was eerily empty, we all got 3-day passes as it was no cheaper to buy two separate day passes.

Requisite shot in front of Angkor Wat (hey that rhymes!)

Angkor Wat is BIG. It is the world’s largest religious building and the primary attraction for most visitors to Cambodia. We took lots of concept photos which was fun.

Hey hey we're The Monkees....

Bayon was the temple with all the stone-carved faces. I enjoyed walking through it more than Angkor Wat, perhaps because it was smaller, and the 216 faces seemed more engaging than bas-reliefs.

Bayon temple at Angkor

Sunset from atop a temple was anti-climactic, too many clouds and tourists, but it still offered great 360-degree views of the landscape. I was showing Sandy photos of India when we heard a collective gasp as the sun fell behind thick clouds, extinguishing people’s hopes of a dramatic and colorful conclusion to their day.

Stone cold faces of Bayon

Throughout our tour of temples, we were approached by young kids to buy cheap, copy Lonely Planet guidebooks for Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam, as well as copies of top selling books on the Khmer Rouge and genocide. At times, it was overbearing, especially as heat and fatigue began to take its toll. We all did our best to be friendly as they followed us around.

Stone face at Bayon

Sandy and Phillip planned to wake up in the pre-dawn hours to catch the sunrise from another location, while Alice and I declined in favor of precious sleep.

Well adorned Buddha statue at Bayon

View of countryside from atop temple at sunset

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Categories: Cambodia

6 Comments

Alfred September 15, 2008 at 2:49 pm

Amazing place! And there are very few tourists around…different than Egypt!

Reply

Alfred September 15, 2008 at 9:49 am

Amazing place! And there are very few tourists around…different than Egypt!

Reply

lissie September 16, 2008 at 12:31 am

Where are all the tourists – I was there in Jan a few years ago and that first 2nd photo would have at least 20/30 tourists in the background! Get out to some of the more remote temples and the kids disapear! Angkor is fantastic but get to the real Cambodia too – Angkor is very Thai-fied now. I took the boat south to Balembeng (sp) – thru floating villages – awesome – took hours v. uncomfortable but fantastic trip- you loop back around to phnom Phenh from there. The south coast was amazing too

Reply

lissie September 15, 2008 at 7:31 pm

Where are all the tourists – I was there in Jan a few years ago and that first 2nd photo would have at least 20/30 tourists in the background! Get out to some of the more remote temples and the kids disapear! Angkor is fantastic but get to the real Cambodia too – Angkor is very Thai-fied now. I took the boat south to Balembeng (sp) – thru floating villages – awesome – took hours v. uncomfortable but fantastic trip- you loop back around to phnom Phenh from there. The south coast was amazing too

Reply

liz September 16, 2008 at 1:37 pm

I’m also amazed by how few people are in your pictures. What was your secret? stink bomb? stun gun? shouting angelina and pointing elsewhere?

When we were there two years ago, I was shocked by the amount of people there and how built up the tourist infrastructure was especially right across from Angkor where all the tuktuks and souvenir sellers are, but also the walkways and park rangers at “remote” ta prohm. Totally unlike the rest of Cambodia.

But it was still really awesome and a definite must see.

Have you had amok fish yet? Absolutely delicious.

sigh, I need to go travelling asap.

Reply

liz September 16, 2008 at 8:37 am

I’m also amazed by how few people are in your pictures. What was your secret? stink bomb? stun gun? shouting angelina and pointing elsewhere?

When we were there two years ago, I was shocked by the amount of people there and how built up the tourist infrastructure was especially right across from Angkor where all the tuktuks and souvenir sellers are, but also the walkways and park rangers at “remote” ta prohm. Totally unlike the rest of Cambodia.

But it was still really awesome and a definite must see.

Have you had amok fish yet? Absolutely delicious.

sigh, I need to go travelling asap.

Reply

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