Monday, July 18, 2011

The magnificient Angkor Temples!

Hola ! 
I'm going to bring you to one of the main UNESCO heritage site in South East Asia.
It was discovered by the French.
Can you guess where is it?

It's Angkor Wat ! Angkor refers to temple in Hinduism and Wat refers to temple too but in Buddhism. Hinduism and Buddhism was adapted by the kings in different era. The king will decide the religion when he rule the country. The temples there were either inspired by Hinduism or Buddhism. For example, if the first king believe in Hinduism and the second king believes in Buddhism, they might just alter the sculpture of the temples or build a completely new temple. Some temples have a mixture of Hindu and Buddhist influence.
We shared a tour guide with 3 other travelers from the guesthouse. We met two of them in Saigon when we were doing our Melkong Delta trip. The charges for tour guide is USD 20 per day. Our tour guide is Mr.Vanna and he's very good. We booked a tuktuk for USD 15.

My experience in Siam Reap is the highlight of my 9 days trip. It started up with throwing up three times in the morning. fml

We bought the one day ticket at USD 20 each. The pass has our picture on it so the guards can check. 
My friend and I went to Angkor Wat at 430am to watch the sunrise! We asked the others to come with us but they would rather watch the sunset. lol.

It was raining season in June so the sun didn't show up at all. :(

We took a stroll inside the Angkor Wat temple. The weather was pretty good and we took a few pictures. We were glad that we went to see the sunrise. You will know why later :)

This was my favourite shot of the day. I adjusted the setting of the camera and the outcome was great without editing. It was taken at one of the temple inside Angkor Wat. There's a total of five temples.
After that, we went back to the guesthouse to have our breakfast and meet the rest. My body doesn't allow me to consume any food for breakfast either. :(

We started our tour with Sras Srang. Vanna told us that the king use it for swimming or bathing with his wives. There's suppose to be a temple in the middle but it drowned if I remember it correctly. It's good to hire a tour guide because they will tell you every single details so that you can have very good understanding of the temples. Or get a guidebook for USD 5. You can't just go in there to take pictures because you will get bored very soon everything look the same. =)

I was feeling really bad for the rest of the day so I didn't take any pictures. The weather was cooling and the sky was pretty dark for photography too. 
My friend told me that its better to capture the moment by our own eyes because pictures couldn't tell how magnificent the place is. Angkor temples are amazing. 

After that, we went to Angkor Thom,Ta Phrom, Ta Keo and Terrace of Elephants. 

The only picture I took in Ta Phrom before I felt worst. =(
 In case you don't know, Ta Phrom is the temple where they filmed Tomb Raider. And Angelina Jolie took the same picture from where I stood according to my tour guide. Vanna was very encouraging. He took us to all the best spot to take pictures but unfortunately all of us felt hot, thirsty and tired to take pictures. I wish I didn't fall sick on that day. 

Vanna told us to look from the hole and  tell him what we saw. Don't you think that it looks like a human trying to climb the temple?

Later on, we proceed to Bayon Temple. According to Vanna, the king is a happy king so you can notice the smile on the face of the sculpture.

Vanna, our tour guide explaining the wall sculptures. The artist record the daily activities of the local by carving them on the wall. You can see those sculptures are actually chinese.

We went for lunch at 12 noon and the rain start pouring. I drank coconut water for lunch instead of eating solid food.  The rain continues after lunch. However, we still make our way to the main temple-Angkor Wat. I didn't take any pictures after that because I was busy avoiding myself from getting wet. The rain didn't stop at all.

I'm very impressed with the stories told by Mr.Vanna. He's very dedicated to his job. Well, he make sure that all of us understand the story and history. He repeated the Ramayana story for 938492834092 times. I heard of it before when I was in Bangkok. So, it wasn't a new story to me. 

Here's some guides if you are going to the  Angkor Temples. 
1. Never buy stuff from the kids. They will keep bugging you until you buy more stuff from them. 

2. Never ask for the price unless you are interested in it.

3. You can bring your own food/snacks if you are on a tight budget. The food sold in those restaurants are very expensive. You can also request your driver to bring you out of the park to have lunch. 

4. If you want to visit the outlying temples and big circuit, you will need a multiple day pass. The one day pass is only enough for the small circuit temples as stated in this post. 

5. Wear comfortable shoes  because the steps are very slippery. 

6. Avoid wearing shorts and sleeveless shirt because they might stop you from entering some temples especially the main one in Angkor Wat. Bring a scarf to cover up.

I will stop here today.
p/s: I'm not posting according to my trip. I shall post up my itinerary soon ! 

From the editor who suffered a lot after eating amok fish. =)


kemang~ said...

i wonder to be here.. btw came from m-knight's blog :)

i'm a travelholic to, wish we can be a travelmate :)

MiqTravellers said...

Thanks :)