Best temples Angkor Wat in Siem Riep - The heart of Cambodia

By Jenna Jolie

Angkor Wat in Siem Riep contains the magnificent remains of several capitals of the Khmer Empire. The hundreds of temples survive today and welcome over two million tourists each year.

In this article, let Cambodia Immigration Services discover 10 Magnificent Angkor Temples - The must-see place for global visitors when visiting this country!

Angkor Wat crowned the Best UNESCO World Heritage Site

When was Angkor Wat in Unesco?

UNESCO designated Angkor Wat as an important cultural site in 1992. This city is best known for Angkor Wat, a temple complex that covers an area of more than 162 hectares.

The Angkor Wat temples, whose name literally translates to "The City of Temples," are the world's largest religious monuments.

Where are the temples of Angkor in Cambodia?

Angkor Wat is a temple complex near Simréab in Cambodia.

King Suryavarman II constructed them in the 12th century (reigned 1113–c. 1150).

Angkor Wat is a vast religious complex with over a thousand buildings that is one of the world's great cultural wonders.

What is special about Angkor Wat temple?

Angkor is one of South-East Asia's most important archaeological sites. Angkor Archaeological Park, which covers 400 km2 and includes a forested area, contains the magnificent remains of the Khmer Empire's various capitals from the 9th to the 15th centuries.

They include the well-known Angkor Wat Temple and the Bayon Temple in Angkor Thom, which has numerous sculptural decorations. UNESCO has established a comprehensive program to protect this historic site and its surroundings.

Angkor Wat attracts a large number of visitors every year

Angkor Wat attracts a large number of visitors every year

Top 10 best temples Angkor Wat in Siem Reap must visit

10. Ta Keo

Ta Keo, dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva, was built as Jayavarman V's state temple.

According to legend, the temple was struck by lightning during construction, and all work was halted when the main structure was completed but no external carvings had been added.

Ta Keo is also distinguished by its use of green sandstone as opposed to the deeper brown or grayish hues of the other Angkor temples. The ascent to the temple's peak is difficult, but the view is well worth it.

Ta Keo is a temple that has a mountain shape

Ta Keo is a temple that has a mountain shape

9. Banteay Kdei

Because hundreds of Buddha statues have been excavated, it is assumed that Banteay Kdei was a Buddhist monastery.

The temple was most likely built around the same time as the Ta Prohm temple, in the 12th century. Its design, known as 'the citadel of cells,' is similar to Ta Prohm and Preah Khan, but less complex and smaller in scale.

For centuries after the Khmer empire's demise, it remained neglected and overgrown with vegetation.

Banteay Kdei possesses detailed and sophisticated carvings

Banteay Kdei possesses detailed and sophisticated carvings

8. Pre Rup

Pre Rup is a magnificent structure and size, with three central spires. It has the appearance of a miniature Angkor Wat. Pre Rup was dedicated to Shiva and was built as the state temple of King Rajendravarman in 961.

Pre Rup is made of gray sandstone, which is less durable than the pink sandstone used in some of the other temples at Angkor.

Rain and erosion have washed away many of the intricate details and carvings.

7. Preah Khan

The Preah Khan temple complex is one of the largest at Angkor.

Preah Khan was built by King Jayavarman VII as a temporary residence while Angkor Thom was being constructed.

Preah Khan, the ultimate fusion temple, is both a Buddhist and a Hindu temple. Four ceremonial walkways lead up to the temple's gates. The eastern entrance, with equal-sized doors, is dedicated to Mahayana Buddhism. The other major directions are dedicated to Shiva, Vishnu, and Brahma, with successively smaller doors emphasizing Hinduism's unequal nature.

6. Phnom Bakheng

Phnom Bakheng is a Hindu temple in the shape of a mountain dedicated to Shiva. It was built at the end of the 9th century, more than two centuries before Angkor Wat, during King Yasovarman's reign.

The temple faces east and is built in the shape of a six-tiered pyramid. It had 108 small towers around the temple at ground level and on several tiers when it was finished. Only a few of the towers are still standing. The temple, which is located on top of a hill, is a popular tourist destination due to its spectacular sunset views.

Phnom Bakheng is famous as the best sunset viewing spot in Angkor.

5. Banteay Srei

Banteay Srei, which was primarily dedicated to the Hindu god iva, translates as "Citadel of the Women" because the intricate carvings are allegedly too fine for a man's hand.

Tribhuvanamahevara, its original name, means "great lord of the threefold world." Banteay Srei's construction began in 967 AD.

The temple walls are intricately decorated with floral motifs and epic Ramayana scenes and are made of fine-grained rose-pink sandstone.

The Hindu god Shiva is worshiped at the 10th-century Cambodian temple known as Banteay Srei

The Hindu god Shiva is worshiped at the 10th-century Cambodian temple known as Banteay Srei

4. Angkor Thom

Angkor Thom (literally "Great City") was the final great capital of the Khmer empire.

It was constructed in response to the Chams' surprise pillage of Angkor by King Jayavarman VII.

Each corner of the city wall has a sanctuary tower, as well as five entry gates, one for each cardinal direction and an additional eastern portal, the Victory Gate. Each gate has a tower topped by four massive faces reminiscent of the Bayon temple.

The most fascinating way to enter Angkor Thom is through the south gate. The causeway is flanked by 54 gods and 54 demons, each representing a scene from the well-known Hindu legend "The Churning of the Ocean of Milk."

3. Ta Prohm

Ta Prohm is without a doubt the most atmospheric and photogenic ruin at Angkor, dating from 1186.

Ta Prohm, a Buddhist temple dedicated to Jayavarman VII's mother, is one of the few temples in Angkor where an inscription provides information about the temple's inhabitants. The temple also had gold, pearls, and silks, according to the inscription.

Ta Prohm brings the feeling of entering another dimension of the mysterious world where nature dominates

Ta Prohm brings the feeling of entering another dimension of the mysterious world where nature dominates

2. Bayon Temple

The Bayon temple is surrounded by a sea of over 200 massive stone faces that stare in all directions. Many people believe the strange smiling faces are a portrait of King Jayavarman VII or a combination of him and Buddha.

Built in the 12th century as part of King Jayavarman VII's massive expansion of his capital Angkor Thom.

The Bayon is Angkor's only state temple that was designed primarily as a Mahayana Buddhist shrine dedicated to the Buddha.

The Bayon temple rises three levels to a height of approximately 43 meters (140 feet). The outer gallery depicts scenes from everyday life and historical events, while the inner gallery depicts mythical figures and stories. Siva, Vishnu, and Brahma are among the deities shown in the galleries.

Bayon Temple is built with strange smiling faces carvings

Bayon Temple is built with strange smiling faces carvings

1. Angkor Wat Temple

Angkor Wat, which translates as "City Temple," is the most magnificent and largest of the Angkor temples.

The structure takes up nearly 200 hectares of land (494 acres). A massive rectangular reservoir surrounds the temple, which rises 213 meters through a series of three rectangular terraces to the central shrine and tower (669 feet). This arrangement is based on the traditional Khmer concept of the temple mountain, in which the temple represents Mount Meru, the Hindu gods' home.

Angkor Wat, built during the reign of King Suryavarman II in the first half of the 12th century, is the greatest accomplishment of Khmer architecture is Angkor Wat of Khmer architecture. On the first level, the famous bas-reliefs encircling the temple depict Hindu epics such as the mythical "Churning of the Ocean of Milk." The reliefs, which include thousands of female dancers, are carved into the wall of the temple's third enclosure.

List of the best Angkor Wat temples are places you must visit when traveling to Cambodia. Don’t forget to contact Cambodia Immigration Services now to apply for Cambodia visa to see the Magnificent Angkor Temples. Stay up to 30 days with multiple entries. 

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