19 Monuments to explore in Cambodia
Southeast nation with a population of 15 million. Officially the Kingdom of Cambodia, It has an elective constitutional monarchy with a monarch.
Banteay Chhmar Temple is one of Cambodia’s most important and least understood temples from the Angkorian period. The temple complex, its moat, reservoir and surrounding unspoilt environment comprises a unique archaeological site and a vital link in Cambodia’s cultural heritage. It is the 4th largest temple dating from the Angkorian period.
Phnom Chiso is a historical site located in Sia village. Phnom Chiso temple was built in the early 11th century by King Suryavarman I , who practiced Brahmanism. Constructed of sandstone and other stones, it is 60 meters long and 50 meters wide and sits atop a mountain. It was one of the main tourist attractions in Cambodia.
The original River of Thousand Lingams, Kbal Spean is an intricately carved riverbed deep in the foothills of the Cambodian jungle. Lingams are phallic representations sacred to Brahmanism as symbols of fertility, and hundreds of them are carved into the rock here, as are several carvings of gods and animals above the small waterfall.
Krol Ko at Angkor, Cambodia, is a Buddhist temple built at the end of the 12th century under the rule of Jayavarman VII. This is a small temple with a single central tower surrounded by two laterite walls. Pediments displaying the most interesting carvings at the site are on the ground along the enclosure wall. Krol Ko is comparatively untouristed, offering a peaceful atmosphere.
An Angkor-era mountaintop temple overlooking the countryside and rural villages. The ruin of Phnom Banan, which was originally built in the 11th century, is the best-preserved of the Khmer temples around Battambang and also one of the attractive tourist destinations in Battambang.
Phnom Krom is a hill located about 12 kilometers southwest of Siem Reap, and is home to a spectacular Angkorian temple built in the 9th century, called Prasat Phnom Krom. The hill is also the best spot to catch the sunset in the Siem Reap area, which can be enjoyed from a beautiful pagoda at the top of the 140-meter-high hilltop.
Phnom Santok is a cultural and natural site located in Ko Koh village, Ko Koh commune, Santuk district, about 17 kilometers south of Kampong Thom provincial town. The site includes four mountains: Phnom Srah Kmao or Phnom Tbeng, Phnom Penhum or Phnom Kraper, Phnom Champa, and Phnom Santuk.
Prasat Kravan is a 10th-century Hindu temple which was originally dedicated to Vishnu. There are five brick towers that are oriented to the east and surrounded by a small moat. Unusually, the temple wasn’t built by the king, instead, it was constructed by high ranking officials during the reign of King Harshavarman I or Ishanavarman II. Prasat Kravan is in pretty good condition and its symmetry and lines make for a great photo opportunity.
Preah Khan Kompong Svay is an enormous temple complex located about 100 kilometers due east of Angkor. The name of the temple is a modern designation referring to the former name of the province (Kompong Svay) to distinguish it from the better-known Preah Khan temple in Angkor. Covering about twenty-five square kilometers, Preah Khan Kompong Svay is the largest Khmer-era monument ever constructed.
Preah Palilay is a small temple structure located just north of Phimeanakas in Angkor Thom. It contains elements from both Hinduism and Buddhism. It is famous for its unique structure, the surrounding thick jungle, 7-headed nagas, and headless guards create an eerie-feel. Nowadays it is one of the most visited attractions in Cambodia.
The archaeological site of Sambor Prei Kuk, “the temple in the richness of the forest” in the Khmer language, has been identified as Ishanapura, the capital of the Chenla Empire that flourished in the late 6th and early 7th centuries AD. The property comprises more than a hundred temples and so more. The art and architecture developed here became models for other parts of the region and lay the ground for the unique Khmer style of the Angkor period.
Prasat Ta Muen Thom or Prasat Ta Moan Thom is a Khmer temple located in Oddar Meanchey province, Cambodia. It lies not far from two related temples in a densely forested area where access is difficult on one of the passes through the Dangrek Mountains. These three temples, all within a few hundred meters of each other, formed a complex which was an important stop on a major route of the Khmer Empire
This 10th Century reservoir is a magical setting for its visitors, who admire a serene sunrise from its cross-shaped, laterite landing stage. Under the watchful eye of two lion guardian statues, enjoy the view of the reservoir, which has remained at least partially flooded since its heyday in King Rajendravarman II’s rule.
Ta Keo is one of the biggest temples built during the Khmer Empire and it was built a couple of hundred years before Angkor Wat temple. It was built as the state temple for Jayavarman V and he started construction in 975 AD. Unusually, the temple was never finished. There are many stories as to why Ta Keo was never completed, but nobody knows the real reason. Nowadays, It is quite a popular temple with visitors because of its sheer size – five sanctuary towers sit on top of a 22m stepped pyrami
Prasat Ta Nei is a late 12th Century stone temple located in Angkor, Cambodia. Built during the reign of King Jayavarman VII, it is located near the northwest corner of the East Baray, a large holy reservoir. It was dedicated to the Buddha. It was built under King Jayavarman VII in the late 12th century.
Temple of Preah Vihear is dedicated to Shiva. The Temple is composed of a series of sanctuaries linked by a system of pavements and staircases over an 800 metre long axis and dates back to the first half of the 11th century AD. Nevertheless, its complex history can be traced to the 9th century, when the hermitage was founded.
The Terrace of the Elephants is part of the walled city of Angkor Thom, a ruined temple complex in Cambodia. The terrace was used by Angkor's king Jayavarman VII as a platform from which to view his victorious returning army. It was attached to the palace of Phimeanakas, of which only a few ruins remain. Most of the original structure was made of organic material and has long since disappeared. Most of what remains are the foundation platforms of the complex.
Koh Ker was once an ancient capital of Cambodia, located in Srayong Cheung village. The Koh Ker complex is on the Chhork Koki highland. It was built by King Jayavarman IV. Koh Ker temple is 35 meters high, and its design resembles a seven-stepped stupa. The temple faces west toward Angkor city. It was built to worship Treypuvanesvara, the god of happiness.