Select Languages

Angkor Wat Temple

Since the "discovery" of the temple of Angkor Wat, released in the mid-19th century, it was described as the largest religious building in the world and is rightly spoken as one of the wonders of the ancient world along with sites such as Macchu Picchu and the Taj Mahal. The temple is located just over 6 km from Siem Reap, it is the centerpiece of the Angkor Archaeological Park and has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1992.

Angkor Wat Temple Tours Summary

Since the "discovery" of the temple of Angkor Wat, released in the mid-19th century, it was described as the largest religious building in the world and is rightly spoken as one of the wonders of the ancient world along with sites such as Macchu Picchu and the Taj Mahal. The temple is located just over 6 km from Siem Reap, it is the centerpiece of the Angkor Archaeological Park and has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1992.

One of the largest temples of Angkor, Angkor Wat was built under King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century. Originally built as a temple for Vishnu, it has been in continuous use as a Buddhist shrine since the adoption of Theravada Buddhism by the Khmer people. which means it has remained in excellent condition throughout the centuries. Because of its symbolic representation of the ancient Khmer nation, the temple survived the Khmer Rouge years relatively intact and the number of tourists has steadily increased since the political situation stabilized.

Angkor Wat Temple Tours Overview

Angkor Wat is the largest Hindu temple complex in the world, situated in Angkor, Cambodia, built by King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century as its temple and state capital. As the best preserved temple on the site, it is the only one to have remained an important religious center since its foundation - the first Hindu, dedicated to the then Buddhist god Vishnu. The temple is at the top of the high classical style of Khmer architecture. It has become a symbol of Cambodia, appearing on its national flag, and is the main attraction of the country by visitors.

Angkor Wat combines two basic architectural plans of the Khmer temple: the temple mountain and the later galleried temple, based on the Hindu architecture of southern South India, with key features like the Jagati. It is designed to represent Mount Meru, home of the devas in Hindu mythology: within a moat and an outer wall, 3.6 kilometers (2.2 mi) in length are three rectangular galleries, each raised above the next. In the center of the temple is a quincunx of towers. Unlike most Angkoran temples, Angkor Wat is oriented to the west; Scholars are divided as to the meaning of this. The temple is admired for the grandeur and harmony of the architecture, its extensive bas-reliefs and the numerous devatas that adorn its walls.

The modern name, Angkor Wat, means "Temple of the City"; Angkor is a vernacular form of the word nokor, which comes from the Sanskrit word nagar. Wat is the Khmer form of Pali word "vatthu" which means "temple grounds". Before this time, the temple was known as Preah Pisnulok (Vara Vishnuloka in Sanskrit), after the posthumous title of its founder.

History of Angkor Wat Temple

Angkor Wat is located 5.5 km north of the modern city of Siem Reap and a short distance south and a little east of the former capital, centered on Baphuon. It is in an area of Cambodia, where there is an important group of ancient structures. It is the southern end of the main sites of Angkor.

The initial design and construction of the temple took place in the first half of the 12th century, under the reign of Suryavarman II (ruled by 1113 - 1150). Dedicated to Vishnu, it was built as the temple of the king's state and the capital. As neither the base stela nor the contemporary temple inscriptions were found, their original name is unknown, but may have been known as Vrah Vishnu-lok (literally "Holy Vishnu-Location", Old Khmer 'Sanskrit). after the divinity he presides over. The work seems to have ended shortly after the king's death, leaving the bas-relief decoration unfinished. In 1177, about 27 years after the death of Suryavarman II, Angkor was dismissed by the Khams, the traditional enemies of the Khmer. Subsequently, the empire was restored by a new king, Jayavarman VII, who established a new temple of capital and state (Angkor Thom and Bayon, respectively) a few miles north.

In the late 13th century, Angkor Wat gradually shifted from the use of the Hindu Buddhist to the Theravada, which continues to the present. Angkor Wat is unusual among the temples of Angkor in that although it was somewhat neglected after the 16th century was never completely abandoned, its preservation was due in part to the fact that its moat also provided some protection against invasion by the jungle.

Angkor Wat temple today

The Archaeological Survey of India conducted temple restoration work between 1986 and 1992. Since the 1990s, Angkor Wat has seen ongoing conservation efforts and a massive increase in tourism. The temple is part of the World Heritage Site of Angkor, established in 1992, which provided some funding and encouraged the Cambodian government to protect the site. The German Apsara Conservation Project (GACP) is working to protect the devatas and other bas-reliefs that decorate the temple of damage. The organization's research found that about 20% of devatas were in very poor condition, mainly due to natural erosion and stone deterioration, but also due to previous restoration efforts. Another work involves repairing collapsed sections of the structure and preventing an additional collapse: the west façade of the upper level for example was supported by scaffolding since 2002, while a Japanese team completed the restoration of the northern library's overseas closure in 2005 The World Monuments Fund began work at the Churning of Sea of ​​Milk Gallery in 2008.

Angkor Wat has become a major tourist destination. In 2004 and 2005, government figures suggest that 561,000 and 677,000 foreign visitors respectively arrived in Siem Reap province, approximately 50% of all foreign tourists in Cambodia for both years. The site has been managed by the private group SOKIMEX since 1990, which leased it from the Cambodian government. The influx of tourists so far has caused relatively small damage, in addition to some graffiti; Rope and wooden steps were introduced to protect bas-reliefs and floors, respectively. Tourism has also provided some additional funds for maintenance - as of 2000, about 28 percent of all Angkor site revenue has been spent in temples - although most work is done by teams sponsored by the foreign government rather than by the authorities of Cambodia.

At the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2012, both parties agreed that Borobudur and Angkor Wat would become sister sites and the provinces will become sister provinces. Two Indonesian airlines are considering the opportunity to open a direct flight from Yogyakarta, Central Java Province, Indonesia to Siem Reap

View Mores Temple Guide

Prasat Leak Neang

Prasat Leak Neang

Prasat Leak Neang (Khmer's "Tower of the Hidden Virgin") is a small, 200 m east of Pre Rup, lying Prasat in Angkor. According to an inscription, the building dates from 960 and was built under ...

Prasat linga

Prasat linga

The nearest monuments to the main temple complex of Koh Ker of Prasat Thom are five isolated temples belonging to the Northeast group. Each of them housed a monolithic decorated Lingam of enormous ...

Preah Ang Thom

Preah Ang Thom

Preah Ang Thom (Khmer: ព្រះអង្គ ធំ) is an 8-meter tall statue of the reclining Buddha that strikes nirvana. The statue is carved into a huge sandstone rock. Preah Ang Thom is the ...

Angkor Thom West Gate

Angkor Thom West Gate

The sidewalk at the west gate of Angkor Thom collapsed completely, leaving a heap of ancient stones coming out of the ground like victims of a terrible historical ...

Angkor Handicraft 1

Angkor Handicraft 1

Angkor Craft 1 How to go: 1.5 km (5mn) from the provincial city. Location: Description: Location: Stoeng Village Thmey, Sung Dongkom Commune, District ...

West Baray

West Baray

The West Baray (Khmer: បារាយណ៍ទឹកថ្លា, Baray Teuk Thla) is a baron or reservoir, in Angkor, Cambodia, oriented to the east and west, located west of the walled city, ...

Khleangs(North Khleang and South Khleang)

Khleangs(North Khleang and South Khleang)

The Khleangs are two buildings of unknown purpose on the east side of Royal Square in Angkor Thom, Cambodia, located just behind the twelve towers of Prasat Suor Prat and separated by the royal route ...

Ta Keo

Ta Keo

Ta Keo had to be the state temple of Jayavarman V, son of Rajendravarman, who had built the Pre Rup. Like Pre Rup, it has five sanctuary towers arranged in a quincunx, built at the highest level of ...

Kampong Khleang Floating Village

Kampong Khleang Floating Village

Kampong Khleang is a village in Cambodia, situated on Tonle Sap Lake. Most of the community lives in stilt houses. This creates a unique feeling. Kampong Khleang is a must visit during your trip to ...

Preah Khan Temple

Preah Khan Temple

Preah Khan Temple is located 2 km northeast of Angkor Thorn on the Grand Circuit. The temple was built in the second half of the 12th century AD in AD 1191 by King Jaya-varman VII, dedicating to his ...

Angkor National Museum

Angkor National Museum

During the Golden Age of the Khmer Kingdom, one of the ancient civilizations of this world was being created. It was the origin of Khmer art, culture and architecture. These great inventions have ...

Terrace of the Leper King

Terrace of the Leper King

Leper King Terrace (Khmer: ព្រះ លាន ស្តេ ច គម្លង់, Preah Learn Sdech Kunlung) is located in the north-west corner of the Royal Square of Angkor Thom in Cambodia. ...

Related Tours in Siem Reap