About Angkor Wat Temple!!!

4 Jul 2009, Comments: | Views: 5906 | | Category: Travel

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Angkor Wat
 The Angkor Wat ...

Angkor Wat (or Angkor Vat) (Khmer), is a temple complex at Angkor, Cambodia, built for the king Suryavarman II who reigned between AD 1131 and 1150  as his state temple and capital city. As the best-preserved temple at the site, it is the only one to have remained a significant religious centre since its foundation—first Hindu, dedicated to Vishnu, then Buddhist. The temple is the epitome of the high classical style of Khmer architecture.  The Temple was constructed over a period of 30 years, and illustrates some of the most beautiful examples of Khmer and Hindu art. Covering an area of about 81 hectares, the complex consists of five towers, which are presently shown on the Cambodian national flag.

The Khmer kingdom lasted from the ninth to the 15th centuries, and at its height dominated a wide swath of Southeast Asia, from Myanmar (Burma) in the west to Vietnam in the east. As many as 750,000 people lived in Angkor, its capital, which sprawled across an area the size of New York City's five boroughs, making it the most extensive urban complex of the preindustrial world. By the late 16th century, when Portuguese missionaries came upon the lotus-shaped towers of Angkor Wat—the most elaborate of the city's temples and the world's largest religious monument—the once resplendent capital of the empire was in its death throes. 

Angkor's daily rhythms come to life in sculptures that have survived centuries of decay and, more recently, war. Bas-reliefs on temple facades depict everyday scenes—two men hunched over a board game, for instance, and a woman giving birth under a shaded pavilion—and pay homage to the spiritual world inhabited by creatures such as apsaras, alluring celestial dancers who served as messengers between humans and the gods.

The Angkor was so profound that it features on the national flag of cambodia. A source of great national pride, Angkor Wat has been depicted in every Cambodian national flag from 1863 to 1992. The Cambodian flag during Japanese occupation did not contain the Angkor Wat.In 1993 the original flag was readopted. The current Cambodian flag holds the distinction of being the only flag to feature a building in its design. Red and blue are traditional colors of Cambodia. The flag used today is the same as that established in 1948, although since then 5 other designs have been used. These have almost all made use of the image of the temple of Angkor Wat in one form or another.  The temple also appears on the arms. The monarchy was restored in September 1993, the 1948 flag having been readopted in June of that year.  

World Heritage Site

UNESCO on  it's site about world heritage site says about Angkor as -

Angkor is one of the most important archaeological sites in South-East Asia. Stretching over some 400 km2, including forested area, Angkor Archaeological Park contains the magnificent remains of the different capitals of the Khmer Empire, from the 9th to the 15th century. They include the famous Temple of Angkor Wat and, at Angkor Thom, the Bayon Temple with its countless sculptural decorations. UNESCO has set up a wide-ranging programme to safeguard this symbolic site and its surroundings.

Click here to visit the UNESCO world heritage website to know more and about other heritage sites too...

The Architecture

 Satellite Image

Angkor Wat is a representation of Mount Meru, home of the gods and the center of the Hindu universe. In addition to its unique pyramid temple architecture, Angkor Wat is covered with intricate bas-relief carvings of Hindu epics.

s are clearly visible in this Ikonos image, acquired on April 12, 2004. The temple complex is surrounded by a 174-meter- (570-foot-) wide moat, visible in the large image, that represents the oceans at the edge of the universe. A stone causeway leads through the Hindu universe to the temple home of the gods from the west, on the left side of the image. The temple complex itself is a series of buildings on rising terraces like the slopes of a mountain.  At the center of Angkor Wat are five towers that represent the five peaks of Mount Meru. The round towers mark out the corners and the center of the innermost square of the complex. Like the mountain peaks they represent, the towers are pointed on top. The pinnacle of each tower is slightly lighter than the surrounding black stone in this image. (source:NASA)  

How to Reach ? Best Time?

Ofcourse to visit Angkor Wat you have to fly to Camboida. The Phnom Penh(capital city)'s Pochentong Airport is the international airport. It has flights arriving from Bangkok, Moscow, Saigon, Vientiane and Hanoi. Private cars and buses can be hired from here to reach the heart of the city. Also the town Siem Reap can be reached through domestic flights, which is just a few miles from the temples of Angkor.Buses can be availed from Saigon which takes 8 to 10 hours to reach Phnom Penh via Moc Bai.Cambodia can be reached by car via NH Route 7 from Laos and Thailand. Angkor Wat has a tropical type of climate with a very heavy rainfall. The winter is cool and dry from November to March, with a minimum temperature of 25 degrees in January, which is the coolest month. The hottest month is April with a maximum temperature of 35 degrees. The best time to visit is between December to February.

Click here for Video On Angkor

More Information:

Angkor Wat is a live example of the architectural abilities and engineering skills of the ancient world. National Geographic Magazine has recently presented a splendid info on this monumnet which is in the deep rain forests.... Please use the below links to admire the monument (these are external links and open in a new window.. if your browser blocks you may require to allow pop-ups)

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