Built between 1113 and 1150 by Suryavarman II as his state temple and capital city, Angkor Wat is, with its 200 hectares area, one of the largest religious monuments ever constructed. Its name means “Buddhist Monastery in the city”. The most celebrated of all Cambodian´s monuments is considered to be the symbol of the nation and its silhouette appears in the national flag. This pinnacle of classical fine art was originally dedicated to the god Vishnu. In the 16th century, it started to become a significant pilgrimage site for both domestic and international adherents of Buddhism.
Angkor Wat combines two basic plans of Khmer temple architecture: the temple-mountain and the later galleried temple. It is designed to represent Mount Meru, home of the devas in Hindu mythology: within a moat and an outer wall 3.6 kilometers long are three rectangular galleries, each raised above the next. At the center of the temple stands a quincunx of towers. Unlike most Angkorian temples oriented to the East, Angkor Wat is oriented to the West. Scholars are divided as to the significance of this.
The temple is admired for the grandeur and harmony of its architecture, extensive bas-reliefs and in particular the Churning of the Ocean of Milk, and for the numerous devatas adorning its walls.
Do not miss the amazing sunrise and sunset.
Warning, for safety reasons, access to the Bakan is not allowed to children under 12 years old and to pregnant women. The number of people who can access is limited to 100 visitors to the Bakan at the same time. This limited carrying-capacity aims at preserving the temples and ensuring the safety of all visitors.