Angkor Wat is the world's biggest religious monument of its kind. Many Buddhists insist it is also the world's biggest and greatest Buddhist temple since it is still used as a religious shrine. Men must wear T-shirts and women must also be properly dressed as skimpy tops and overtly sexy attire are not permitted as it should be.
Built in late 11th or early 12th century by King Suryavarman II as a Hindu temple to Vishnu, Angkor Wat is designed to mimic Mount Meru, home of the Hindu devas and gods, replete with moat and world famous 5 towers with the tallest central one the holiest of holies. By the 13th century the tone became more Buddhist and it became a Buddhist temple to this day.
Tourists are allowed to climb up this sacred tower as this is considered the last and highlight of your visit.
The view and ambiance are staggering so you must climb to the top of this manmade peak. There is a Buddha statue with golden lotus umbrella above his head so you can pray here.
Angkor Wat is so incredible today with modern technology that visitors and pilgrims from other nations visiting it when it was first built must have fallen to their knees in wonder and adoration. According to legend, Angkor Wat was built in 1 day and 1 night by a divine architect sent by Indra to construct a palace for his son Phrea Ket Melea.
Today, even modern architects aided my super computers will balk at re-creating a clone of Angkor Wat as transporting the solid stone slabs, lifting, positioning and polishing the stones alone would be a monumental task. Let alone the detailed, intricate and extravagant bas-reliefs on the walls. Then, everything was done by manual labour using hands and even now, modern machines cannot replicate such exquisite artwork. Even if money is no problem!
AAA TRAVEL & TOURS is the best ground agency which offers made-to-measure itineraries for a minimum of 2 persons.
I used AAA Travel & Tours and can swear in Buddha's name they are the best or at least I have no complaints!
Their rates are very reasonable too. Certainly not cheap as nothing is cheap these days! The rates for 4 days and 3 nights range from US$ 330 to US$ 490 per person for twin sharing in a 3-star, 4-star or 5-star hotel.
I stayed at Park Hyatt Siem Reap which is the best hotel in Siem Reap with the best location in town so do not expect AAA Travel & Tours to put you up at what you are paying them!
A night at Park Hyatt Siem Reap costs RM 880 to RM 1,700 but John Teng the MD of AAA Travel & Tours can book you in Park Hyatt Siem Reap should you wish to upgrade your hotel into the super-prime category.
Contact John Teng; Mobile +855 12 995 977
THE TOP AND HIGHEST TOWER LOCATED IN THE CENTRE OF ANGKOR WAT
THIS IS THE HOLY OF HOLIES
VIEW FROM THE TOP
LOOKS LIKE THE ROOFS ARE MADE OF THATCH OR WOOD BUT THEY ARE CARVED STONE!
KEE HUA CHEE ENJOYING LAST LOOK
GREAT BALANCING ACT
I PRAYED HERE SO I COULD RETURN TO ANGKOR AGAIN SOON
PRAISE TO BUDDHA
THE NEW WOODEN STEPS LOOK STEEP NOW BUT WHEN I CAME HERE A DECADE AGO, I HAD TO DESCEND ON THE ORIGINAL STONE STEPS! THE STONE STEPS WERE SO STEEP AND SCARY I HAD TO CLIMB DOWN BACKWARDS FACING THE STEPS!
TODAY CLIMBING TO THE TOP IS A PIECE OF CAKE
EVEN SO, CARE MUST BE TAKEN
SLOW AND STEADY, FOLKS!
KEE HUA CHEE PUTS HIS ADIDAS FORWARD
THE GUY SEEMS CONFIDENT COMPARED TO THE WOMAN CLINGING ONTO THE RAILING!
PAY A DOLLAR TO POSE WITH THESE DANCERS!
ANOTHER ENTRANCE WHICH DOES NOT HAVE MODERN WOODEN STEPS SO I ADVISE YOU NOT TO CLIMB HERE! GO TO THE OTHER ONE!
TO MY HAPPINESS, I SAW SOME MONKS AND I SKIPPED DOWN THE STEPS!
MONKS TAKING PHOTOS OF ANGKOR WAT
THEY AGREED TO BE PHOTOGRAPHED
KEE HUA CHEE AND CAMBODIAN MONKS!
WHAT A HAPPY COINCIDENCE AS KEE HUA CHEE WAS WEARING ORANGE TOO
ACTUALLY KEE HUA CHEE PURPOSELY WORE YELLOW AS HE WAS HOPING TO BE PHOTOGRAPHED WITH MONKS! LUCKY KEE!
RATANA MY TOUR GUIDE TOOK US TO VIEW MORE MURAL CARVINGS
THIS IS THE MOST CELEBRATED FRIEZE---THE CHURNING OF THE OCEAN OF MILK!
VISHNU IN THE CENTRE
VISHNU STANDS ON A TURTLE TO PREVENT THE EARTH FROM SINKING INTO THE OCEAN OF MILK AS IT WAS VIOLENTLY CHURNED BY THE DEMIGODS AND DEMONS
THESE ARE THE DEMONS OR ASURAS WHO INSISTED ON USING THE SNAKE VASAKI'S HEAD WHILE THE DEVAS OR DEMIGODS HAD TO CHURN OR TUG-OF-WAR WITH THE SNAKE'S TAIL
THE DEMONS DID NOT REALISE THE FUMES EMITING FROM THE SNAKE VASAKI WAS DEADLY POISONOUS AND WERE EVENTUALLY OVERWHELMED BY THE SNAKE'S POISONOUS BREATH!
SCENES OF HELL
CAN YOU BELIEVE THE INCREDIBLE SHADOWS CAST BY THE BALUSTRADES? AMAZING
ALL IN PERFECT CONDITION!
KEE HUA CHEE LOOKING SO RADIANT ON TERRA FIRMA
KEE HUA CHEE LOOKING FRESH STILL
KEE HUA CHEE'S COMPLEXION IS SO GLOWING
VILLAGERS STILL LIVE HERE IN THE SHADOWS OF ANGKOR WAT
SUCH PERFECT SYMMETRY!
MY GUIDE RATANA FROM AAA TRAVEL & TOURS TOOK US OUT VIA A SELDOM USED EXIT SO WE DID NOT HAVE TO JOSTLE WITH THE CROWD!
ANGKOR WAT IS AT RIGHT
SIDE ENTRANCE OF ANGKOR WAT
KEE HUA CHEE