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Angkor Area Temples

Angkor Area Temples

Mohanokor,the capital of the Khmer Empire

Mohanokor, an urban system extending at least 200 square kilometers and comprising of more than 1,000 vestiges of monuments.
Mohanokor, the "Rice field-City ',' Hydraulic Urban System ',' Residence of the Gods" was, for six centuries - from 9th to 14th inclusive, a period more or less contemporary with the Western medieval/ middle age - the amazing capital of the Khmer Empire.

Mohanokor Main Monuments

Roluos

On the road of Phnom Penh, about fifteen kilometers after having left Siem Reap, there is a village named Roluos: this sector contains the vestiges of Hariharalaya city. Jayavarman II, founder of the kingdom died there at the beginning of the 9th century. In addition to the historical (Hariharalaya was the first capital of khmer kings) and architectural (brick towers -first choice) interests, visiting Roluos is very pleasant because we completely change of atmosphere; it is an pastoral break after the bucolic forest of Angkor. Moreover the walk is quiet because very few visitors are very go to Roluos. It is not like in Banteay Srei where everybody is walking on everyone.

Prasat Lolei

On the road of Phnom Penh, before arriving at Poum Roluos, visitor turns left in the rice plantation to move on an elevated and shaded terrace which seems to be a monastery. Prasat Lolei is indeed built on a square base, as the Mébon (artificial small island) emerging of Baray (rectangular basin) Indratataka of which the length reached almost 4 kilometers. In the middle of the buildings of the monastery, four old brick towers assure visitor that there is indeed a temple there. Lolei was carried out at the beginning of the reign of Yasovarman, which discharged quickly and well his duties towards his ancestors, before continuing The great idea: founding Yacodarapura, wich means to build Angkor. Although they are very damaged, visitor is impressed by the elegance and the personality of these towers whose style is unprecedented in Angkor even. There is the sandstone lintels carved with particularly of smoothness, and there is also persistences of stucco out of mortar of lime worked (which can not be seen on the brick temples of Angkor) and even beautiful small Apsaras broods in the 4 corners of the towers.

preah Kau

Prah Kô (Beef Crowned) is, just as the temples of the Group of Roluos other than Lolei, at the other side of the road leading Phnom Penh. It is surrounded by moats and as of the first glance, one is struck more still than in Lolei by the beautiful proportions of these brick towers which more still than in Lolei carry the traces of the Blanc stucco which was to make them still more splendid. These 6 towers are aligned 3 by 3 and - rare thing in khmer architecture- of manner not perfectly rectilinear. Each tower was devoted to one ancestor of Indravarman and contained a substitute statue, makes still unusual there, simple Linga. The ornamentation of the towers is plentiful, but without any error of taste. We note, in particular after having admired the style of the sandstone lintels, that even in the very start of Xème century, khmer art and architectural was completely mature. Before evolving to the colossal one by a first stage, Bakong: precisely it is the temple of at side built also by Indravarman.

Bakong

Prei Monti

Another member of the club of great forgotten of Angkor. This is the very damaged ruins of some small brick towers lost in the forest. After a large whole like Bakong, it is a little thin. Even if there is not much to see, Prei Monti deserves the respectful homage of the Angkorian visitor who will collect himself thoughts with enthusiasm on this very first monument of Angkor (excluding the stone heaps of Western Baray)

Banteay Samre

This temple is located on the East extremity of the Eastern baray, i.e. a little far from all. So it is " forgotten award " of the basic tourist... For the others, a true oasis of quietness and beauty. The visit of Banteay Samré starts high with the crossing of the picturesque village and the green rice plantations which border the overland road crossing the ancient baray. Then appears a massive form: a high laterite enclosing wall which one circumvents to reach the east, where is located the only entrance of the temple. Small but majestic, neither pyramid nor "plein-pied cruciforme", Banteay Samré has a strong personality in spite of a design of a great simplicity. Contemporary of Angkor Vat, it takes again the architectural and decorative styles of it: There, visitor is in the country of elegance and lightness. The state of the temple, thanks to Maurice Glaize is excellent. the only regret is the absence of the least Apsaras, than you can find abundancly on other “Angkorvatian“ monuments". The visit of Banteay Samré is generally made with the one of Banteay Srei … So, what an unforgettable day...!

Banteay srei

Banteay Srei (citadel of the women) is a small and very isolated temple located at the edge of the River Siem Reap at about 20 kilometers from Pre-Rup, on the road leading to Phnom Kûlen... It constitutes indeed one essential stopover for any visitor paying 60 dollars, the price which gives the right to visit Angkor during one week. the building of the monument was decided under the reign of Jayavarman V by its " Great Vizir " Yajnavarâha, a Brahman dignitary whose power spread on several reigns. This guy was to have a pretty country house in Phnom Dei sector. Rediscovered recently (in 1914), this temple was quickly made famous in the Twenties thanks to André Malraux who " borrowed there " all the statues of dévatas southern sanctuary, that is to say almost a ton of low-reliefs of very beautiful style (Mister had much taste): fortunately all retowered in its place. Following the incident, this temple had become a star, and a serious restoration was thus decided: Henri Marchal discharged this mission by testing successfully the anastylose, a technique consisting of the total demounting of the blocks of the monument before reassembly, and realization (in the event of absolute need) of new stones of replacement. The rebuilding of the temple was rather fast because of excellent state of the blocks of pink sandstone, copiously worked what facilitated the task of reading of the stony puzzle... Overall, this business concerned a small temple (not as in Baphuon for example!) The result is exceptional: you feel like visiting a new temple. Moreover, the architectural, sculptural, decorative style from Banteay Srei particularly plentiful, elegant, merry, is varied from where a particularly pleasant visit... Except when there is too many people (It is a very little place!) because Banteay Srei is today on the way to become the first temple of Angkor

Kbal Spean

The great climax of the graded and tattooed Angkorian visitor. Kbal Spean is not an expedition like the others.Finally, it is an unique monument in the world, as it is carved in the sandstone of the bed of the future Siem Reap River. So, thanks to this odd temple the water of the rice plantations is correctly bénite The two dominant inspirations of the sculptures are the linga (we are at Civa's) as well as the animals (we are probably at one time close to that of the style of Baphuon). Nobody knows exactly who is the author of Kbal Spean (Head of the Bridge): The temple was rediscovered in the Fifties per Jean Boulbet.

Phnom Krom

Brahmanic temple dedicated to Civa, buillt at the end of 9th century by the King Yasovarman Phnom Kraom Hill is located 15 kilometers south of Siem Reap, on the shore of Great Lake. Temples aside,this is a a great spot because of the magnificent panorama as you climb to the top of the hill. Phnom Kraom is a great "double" contemporary monastery, whose buildings are divided: one at the foot and another at the top of the mountain, where you can admire a mountain temple with three towers, dating from the tenth century which is one of the many achievements of Yaçovarman, who was unrestrained in empire –building The remains of Phnom Kraom are to be associated with those of Phnom Bok, also a mountain temple with three towers, built by the same King and on a hill also. The architectural style is that of the Bakheng temple and it is in relatively good condition and displays the beautiful style of the towers still standing, unlike its counterparts at Bakheng, which have collapsed.

 

Phnom Bok

Brahmanic temple dedicated to Civa, buillt at the end of 9th century by the King Yasovarman Since 2009, access to the hill of Phnom Bok, located a few kilometers north-east of Banteay Samra, has become very easy, thanks to the huge improvement and intensification of the road network serving the temples of the Angkor region . At Phnom Bok there is a contemporary monastery built around the remains of a tenth century mountain temple with three towers, dating from the tenth century which is one of the many achievements of Yaçovarman, who was unrestrained in empire –building The remains of Phnom Bok are to be associated with those of Phnom Kraom, also a mountain temple with three towers, built by the same King and on a hill also The architectural style is that of the Bakheng temple, but the temple is in poor condition and the trip is more advisable in the margin of traditional tours. Let us say that he site is better for its views than for its ruins.

 

Wat Trat Chau Srey Vibol

Former angkorian city, it is now a monastry dedicated to the cult of both Buddha and dêvata Chaw Srèy Vibaol. Ruins of 10th to 12th century AC Since 2009, access to Trat Wat, located a few kilometers south-east of Banteay Samrê, has become very easy thanks to the great improvement and intensification of the road network serving the temples in the Angkor region. Wat Trat is dedicated to the cult of Chaw Srey Vibaoldevata The remains are those of a great medieval Khmer city on the axis linking Angkor to Beng Mealea and Kompong Svay. In the middle of the enclosures is a temple mountain, but at the top of the mountain is a very ugly modern cement Cella, itself in ruins. However, there are a lot of old stones, some of them forming buildings ready to collapse, and therefore among the huge number, many beautiful old stones that are generally very well sculpted. A place for quiet contemplation on the margins of traditional tours , set within a vast territory with very rich in nice vestiges, and usually a place to spend time without encountering other tourists.

 

Wat Athvear

Monastère bouddhique contenant un temple angkorien Inachevé du style d'Angkor Wat (milieu du XIe siècle) Une halte obligatoire sur la route du Phnom Kraom Wat Athvear est situé à moins de cinq kilomètres du Phsar Chas (Siem Reap Sud) sur la route du Phnom Kraom c'est à dire en direction du Grand Lac Tonlé Sap. Peu après la route périphérique sud et son nouveau pont, on tourne à droite pour entrer dans le (vaste) territoire du monastère "moderne" jusqu'à une puissante muraille en latérite dans laquelle se trouve le monument qui nous interesse, un temple probablement construit durant la fin du 12e siècle, dans un état plus que convenable et présentant des caractéristiques interessantes à commencer par son orientation (seul avec Angkor Vat) coté ouest ce qui pourrait désigner un lieu de culte anciennement Visnouïte... Egalement remarquable : non pas deux mais quatre "bibliothèques" Le monument présente un design de tours à pavillons + mandala caractéristique de nombreux autres temples khmers (ex: Banteay Samrê) et son architecture est une variation parfaite sur le style appliqué à Angkor Vat... Le temple est inachevé au niveau de son ornementation sculptée, sauf quelques surfaces sur le Mandala mais ses lignes n'en demeurent pas moins absolument superbes.