Lost in Angkor Wat

And my itchy feet take me further...

This time, I had a wonderful experience in Cambodia.

Has anyone visited Cambodia before? Did you visit the capital city Phonm Penh? Or you managed to visit Angkor Wat as well?

I decided to republish some of my posts with updates and more photos. Again, I come to realize that I still have tons of photos to share.

Sunrise at Angkor Wat, Cambodia





















Attending a 2-day seminar on Genocide in Phnom Penh ( I will share the photos on another post), I welcomed myself to this fellow ASEAN member states.

Phnom Penh is nice obviously. I did have that familiar warm feelings that I got whenever I visited ASEAN countries. Then, as people say, a visit to Cambodia will never be complete without paying a visit to Angkor Wat. Covering the area of more than 162 hectares, Angkor Wat is without a doubt the largest religious complex in the world. No wonder this temple complex has been proclaimed as the symbol of Cambodia and is proudly appeared on Cambodia's national flag.

So, without further due, I flew to Siem Reap with Angkor Air and plunged myself to the ancient-old mystical Angkor Wat.

It was an amazing journey indeed! One I still cherish until now.


Angkor Wat, Cambodia
one lovely corner at Angkor Wat Temple


First thing first, I flew to Siem Riep from Phnom Penh. It took around 50 minutes fly and we landed at Siem Reap International Airport. As soon as I arrived at the Siem Riep airport, , I got my tuk-tuk to take me to the hotel, had an appointment with the driver for my early-morning ride, and snuggled to my lovely Wooden Angkor hotel (really recommended for sure and you canread my comments for Siem Reap and Phnom Penh at tripadvisor)

The first thing crossing my mind while stepping my itchy-feet here was Borobudur Temple. Well, it is actually quite different because Borobudur is a Buddhist Temple, while Angkor Wat is the Hindu temple. Excuse my ignorance and simplistic approach.

Borobudur is indeed an amazing artifact as well and visiting Angkor Wat, to some extent, was like paying a pilgrimage to its homeland. Maybe because both are amazing temple complex and both are listed in UNESCO World Heritage.

Nevertheless, it is important to note that Angkor Wat is a combination of Buddhist and Hindu  temples. In the beginning, many of the early temples being built here were depicting Hinduism. The original construction of the temple was dedicated to Vishnu, the preserver in Trimurti, Hinduism triad deities. It was first built in the early 12th century by King Suryavarman, the King of Khmer Empire ruled in the 11 - 12th century, for the state temple as well as his mausoleum. the Khmer architecture, during this golden era, is vividly shown by intricate details; the structures, the elements , and the motifs. All of them can be seen through elaborate towers, galleries, bas-relief, and more.

So back to my visit, I started the day very early, I was picked up at 4.30 AM and obviously I was not the only one arranging such early rendezvous. By the time we arrived at the temple, lines of tuk - tuk was already long. And by the way, trying to get a good spot amidst hundreds of people already flocking in Angkor Wat since 5 am was not that easy apparently. 

it was pitch black dark at that time and I was literally squeezing myself. I raced to the spots where we have the view of the whole temple, with the lake in front of it for its beautiful reflection.. The place was already packed with sunrise-hunter like me and tourists who smart enough to start the day early to avoid the scorching sun later on.

Then, after moving at least 3 times, I got my spot. Although I was just an amateur photographer and mainly relying on my no-so-advanced smart phone that I used at that time, I felt like it was such a waste if I didn't immortalise the moment with my gadget.



Sunrise at Angkor Wat Temple, Siem Reap, Cambodia
and the sun kissed the morning....

The temples are amazing and there are so many things to see.

As it was a huge complex, I really have to manage my time and make my priorities.
I was a bit more ambitious at first, but after reality hits me (plus scorching sun the beginning of March when I visited and still quite early in the morning), then I dragged myself until the very last minute to the main attractions.

I was starting with Angkor Wat, enjoying its magnificent sunrise
Reflecting the five peaks of Mount Meru (the home of the Gods in Khmer - Hindu) Architectural masterpiece, Angkor Wat stands majestically until present day. This particular temple was abandoned for quite some times, particularly as Buddhist dominated the later successor of King Suryavarman II.

Then I continued the journey, trying to absorb the ancient vibes in its grandioso form, strolling around walls upon walls of hundred-year-old stories printed on those bas-reliefs. Here are some of the photos I took along the way.


Bas relief at Angkor Wat Temple, Siem Reap, Cambodia
somebody tell me what the story here...

Bas relief at Angkor Wat Temple, Siem Reap, Cambodia
one of the bas-relief in Angkor Wat...

Bas relief at Angkor Wat Temple, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Bas relief at Angkor Wat Temple, Siem Reap, Cambodia
The Apsara Lady...

Then to I went to Bayon temple, famous for its smiling Buddha. Here you will see so many of them.

Bayon Temple at Angkor Wat, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Bayon Temple at Angkor Wat, Siem Reap, Cambodia

As the day continued, I walked further to Ta Phrom to see the famous spot of the Lara Croft's Tomb Raider. Remember the movie? The one starred by Angelina Jolie? Ta Phrom has been getting more and more attention because of that movie and because of its unique huge trees growing amidst the temples and becoming inseparable part of it. But I guess I will do so on the next post. I have also visited several other parts of this gigantic complex. So, stay with me as I will get back to you, will you?


Exploring Cambodia and Siem Reap
So, what do you think about Angkor Wat?
Do you like visiting ancient temples like this?
What do you like most?

Angkor Wat, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Btw, just a little tip to those traveling here. 

  • Don't forget to dress as required and fully considering the season. Summer can be very hot and humid so get your comfortable cotton dress or t-shirt and hat if necessary. 
  • Get your tumbler and fill it full as you will walk a lot. 
  • Wear you favorite sneakers as without even realizing it, I walked from 5 AM to 5 PM, just occasionally take tuk - tuk  to go to different places and have lunch.   
  • Get your tuk-tuk since the very beginning and make sure you make a clear deal with the driver. Tips will be highly appreciated as well. I forget how much I paid for my trip. I guess it was around USD 50 for the whole trip (from hotel, around the complex and to the airport - yes I took tuk-tuk to and from the airport :). But it was back in 2013 and before the pandemic. The price might change already.
  • As the complex is huge, make your priorities by choosing the places you want to see and explore, especially if you need to catch your plane later that day as well.
  • And finally, enjoy the trip. It's really worth all the efforts!

See you on the next post!

26 comments:

  1. asyik ya, mak. jadi pengen main ke sana, moga aja ada rezeki hehe

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  2. Gimana rasanay naik tuk-tuk mbak? :)
    Di Angkor Wat bisa lihat sunrise seru banget ya mbak. Duh kapan bisa jalan lagi mbak Indah

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  3. Kadang-kadang yang suka bikin saya malas jalan itu kalau harus berdesakan dengan banyak orang demi mendapatkan momen tertentu. Tetapi, ada rasa puas banget kalau berhasil mendapatkan foto yang bagus

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  4. Waaw, such an amazing moment you had there. Really wanna know what it's look like traveling with tuk tuk around Cambodia. I wish I could visit this country one day, aamiin

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  5. Situs ini emang kondang banget ya Mba.
    Sering jadi spot untuk syuting film action juga ye kan.

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  6. Memesona sekali relief yang tampak. Menceritakan kisah sejarah pastinya ya. Catet ah, kudu mampir ke sini kalau suatu hari aku ada rezeki aamiin.

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  7. Angkor vat ini masuk salah satu keajaiban dunia ya mbak?
    Btw penasaran dgn naik tuk tuk

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  8. Can't wait to read about Ta Prohm with your version, Sis.
    Meanwhile,
    I am browsing further about Ta Prohm as well.

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  9. I would love to visit Cambodia some day. It seems like such a magical place. Until then, thank you for sharing your lovely pictures! It gives me hope that some day we'll all be safe to travel again.

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  10. Aku belum pernah ke Kamboja mba. Jadi pengen juga jalan-jalan ke sana. Berarti kalau datang ke angkot war jadi mengingatkan candi borobudur ya mba. Jadi penasarana betapa menyenangkannya ya jalan-jalan ke sana. Sepertinya aku rindu jalan-jalan mba

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  11. Cantik banget foto sunrise di angkor wat... Pengen deh bisa ke sana juga...

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    Replies
    1. Sama, pengen juga bisa ke sana, menyimak dari dekat eksotisme Cambodia.

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  12. Indahnyaa...
    Foto matahari terbit ini sungguh seperti lukisan alam nan elok. Memandang moment seperti ini...jadi rindu travelling yaa..

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  13. Luas ya Angkor WAt ini ... eksotis dan indah. Pengen bisa ke sana juga.

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  14. Eksotis banget ya Mbak Indah Kamboja itu, candinya juga terasa mistis..film Tomb Raider bener-bener menaikkan kunjungan wisata ya

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  15. aku nih mba liat Kamboja dari film-film aja, bagus banget ya alam dan peninggalan sejarahnya.

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  16. Belum pernah ke Kamboja tapi sering denger kalau Angkor Wat ini salah satu destinasi wajib kunjung kalau ke sana :D
    Penasaran candinya org Kamboja gmn, moga kelak bisa ke sana jg :D

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  17. Fotonya kece-kece mba...semoga next bisa jalan2 ke LN kalau pandemi usai

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  18. Reliefnya mengisahkan banyak cerita ya mbak. Cantik banget difoto apalagi lihat langsung

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  19. wow, reading mba's post gave new oxygen to my brain about frangipani, thank you for the exciting story

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  20. Amazing banget ya Mbak Angkor Wat ini. Lihat foto-fotonya aja udah bagus banget, apalagi kalau bisa lihat langsung. Plus lihatnya pas sunrise atau sunset gitu. Masya Allah.. indah banget pastinya..

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  21. Suasananya ya memang mirip di Borobudur ya mam, meskipun yang satu peninggalan Budha dan yang satu peninggalan Hindu. Sama-sama menceritakan kisah melalui reliefnya yang cantik.

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  22. Wawww, what an incredible journey ya Mbaaaa...So lucky having a chance to visit that magical place. For me, honestly beaches are the places I love the most but I love to see temples as well since there are many tempples around my hometown here in Semarang. Always feel amazed to see that magnificent place built by our ancestors back then.

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  23. I think it's a bit similar with Prambanan temple ya Mbak. Sama2 candi Hindu.
    Angkor Wat memang sudah terkenal sekali, sayang aku belum sempat ke sana, semoga nanti ada rezeki buat ke sana.

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  24. I haven't visited there, but I did have a friend that was from there. I enjoy seeing his picts on FB, as did I love seeing your images on here.

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  25. Love the photos. I especially love the night time photos. You have done some awesome travel. Thank you for sharing and co-hosting at #omhgww.

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