Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Temple Trekking in Cambodia……Angkor Wat, finally.

We decided to visit Angkor Wat as our third temple visit of the day (helps when you start the day at the crack of dawn, although we were not tempted to be there with everyone else for sunrise!) so that we could avoid the crowds by going when everyone else in a tour group was at lunch!  It worked!

Going across the causeway one realizes how huge the moat is…. 190 meters wide…... 1.5km  by 1.3 kms……
the cracks in the centre are not earthquake damage, they just haven't had the funds to finish repairs!

We were amused to see these monks taking photos of themselves in front of the temple entrance.....

On entering the main entrance we arrived in time to see a family presenting their young son and asking for blessings from Vishnu…….

The statue is over 3 meters high and was carved from a single slab of sandstone….
After the entrance way…with its beautiful exterior walls…….

one enters the second causeway, an avenue of about half a km leading to the main temple…….. very impressive!
We veered to the left in order to see the reflection of the temple in one of the pools of water…..

….and we seemed to be following the monks and their family everywhere…..

then on to the main temple…..

There are fabulous bas reliefs which run around the outer wall , all the way around….. for 1 km!

While we appreciated what we could see we were not tempted to go all the way around……

We entered into the hall of 1000 buddhas, unfortunately most were removed or stolen during the war, and just a handful are left…..….

We went up another story…….

but decided we did not need to go to the top!

 In our defense the steps were extremely steep and it was 35+degress C with high humidity!

We went from west to east, having arranged to be picked up on the other side by our driver.
We were quite happy to see the end in sight!

Then back to the hotel for a swim, then a massage in the nice cool A/C Spa…….. we can definitely recommend!

...and then dinner, again in a great restaurant, Mie Cafe…….

This Cambodian chef was reviewed very favorably in the Phnom Penh Post   He had worked at a 2 star Michelin restaurant in Switzerland before returning to Cambodia.

…excellent food…..

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