5 ancient temples to visit when coming to Cambodia

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Embark on a journey through time and explore the captivating beauty of Cambodia’s ancient temples. With a history dating back centuries, these architectural marvels stand as testaments to the country’s rich cultural heritage. From the world-famous Angkor Wat to lesser-known hidden gems, each Cambodian temple’s storied past and unparalleled beauty. Let Ftrip dive into these ancient temples to visit now!

Five ancient Cambodian temples to consider

Angkor Wat – Cambodia’s Largest Temple

Angkor Wat stands as one of Cambodia’s most renowned and ancient temples, dating back to the 12th century when it was commissioned by King Suryavarman II. Situated in Siem Reap, it ranks among the region’s top tourist destinations.

The grandeur of Angkor Wat extends beyond its sheer size; its architectural splendor and intricate carvings adorn its walls, each depicting captivating stories. These carved narratives vividly portray tales of creation and epic battles.

This colossal temple complex is among the world’s largest religious edifices, comprising three tiers. Ascending its numerous stairs may seem daunting, but the panoramic views from each tier reward the effort with breathtaking vistas.

You should visit Angkor Wat either for the sunrise or the sunset. The sight of the sun turning the temple into a stunning paradise is truly breathtaking. Angkor Wat, whether at sunrise or sunset, provides one of the most captivating views in Cambodia. 

The deep admiration for Angkor Wat stems from its rich history and magnificent vistas. Being at Angkor Wat holds great significance when you realize it has been a place of worship for thousands of years, connecting you with generations past. It’s an incredibly humbling experience.

Banteay Srei – The Hindu Cambodian temple

Often hailed as one of the most breathtaking historical sites, Banteay Srei, a Hindu temple nestled in Cambodia, sits a mere 20 kilometers away from Angkor Thom. Dubbed the ‘woman’s Citadel,’ Banteay Srei Temple is an ancient marvel renowned as one of Cambodia’s most captivating sanctuaries. Despite its modest size compared to Angkor Wat, Banteay Srei holds a special place in the hearts of travelers due to its allure, intricate carvings, and distinctive adornments.

Once concealed within the jungle, the temple emerged from obscurity in 1914 and was resurrected. Drawing inspiration from the Khmer period, the temple’s architecture and carvings narrate tales from the legends of Krishna, Shiva, and Vishnu. Within its walls, the temple is adorned with depictions of goddesses, Shiva, and Vishnu intricately carved into its structure.

Neak Pean – The Island Temple

Constructed during the rule of King Jayavarman VII in the 12th century, the Neak Pean Temple stands out in Cambodia as it rests at the heart of a reservoir just 10 kilometers away from the Angkor Wat temple. Rooted in Hindu tradition, this exceptional temple was dedicated to the concept of Balan, which is believed to possess healing properties. Locals held faith in the water’s ability to cleanse away malevolent spirits responsible for ailments.

Banteay Kdei – The Angkor Temple 

Banteay Kdei Temple, nestled in the Angkor Archaeological Park, is a serene Buddhist temple crafted by King Jayavarman VII during the 12th century. Unlike many other tourist-packed spots, Banteay Kdei offers tranquility and splendid photo opportunities amidst its picturesque ruins and lush vegetation. 

It’s a perfect spot to witness a mesmerizing sunset away from the crowds. Considered a hidden treasure, this temple deserves a spot on your must-visit list when exploring Cambodia’s temples.

Its quiet atmosphere and enchanting ambiance make it an ideal place to soak in the ancient charm of Angkor without the hustle and bustle of large tourist crowds. Exploring the intricate carvings and moss-covered structures of Banteay Kdei is like stepping back in time to a bygone era of Khmer civilization. 

Whether you’re an avid photographer seeking captivating shots or simply craving a peaceful retreat, Banteay Kdei promises a memorable experience amidst Cambodia’s rich historical heritage.

Ta Prohm – The Famous Jungle Temple

Originally called Raja Vihara, Ta Prohm stands in contrast to Angkor Wat temple in terms of natural integration. Following the Khmer society’s collapse, the temple was left deserted, leading it to blend seamlessly with its surroundings, essentially becoming part of the jungle.

Nowadays, referred to as the jungle temple, Ta Prohm is a remarkable sight. Visitors can marvel at how the temple endured years of neglect and gracefully fused with nature. It’s truly a breathtaking destination and one we strongly suggest you visit.

Ta Prohm is a place you shouldn’t miss if you’re into adventure and want to feel a strong link to the past. Its raw beauty reminds us how time flies and how both human-made buildings and nature can withstand the test of time.

Whether you’re an avid explorer or simply in awe of nature’s ability to reclaim its territory, Ta Prohm promises an unforgettable experience that will leave you in awe.

FAQs

What should I wear when visiting these ancient temples?

As these temples are sacred sites, it’s important to dress modestly and respectfully. Visitors are advised to wear clothing that covers the shoulders and knees. Comfortable walking shoes are also recommended as you’ll be exploring temple grounds, some of which may have uneven terrain.

Are there any entrance fees or permits required to visit these ancient temples?

Yes, there are entrance fees to visit the temples within the Angkor Archaeological Park, including Angkor Wat, Bayon Temple, and Ta Prohm. The fees contribute to the preservation and maintenance of these UNESCO World Heritage sites. Additionally, a separate admission fee is required to visit Preah Vihear Temple. It’s advisable to check the latest ticket prices and regulations before planning your visit.

Can I visit all these temples in one day?

While it’s possible to visit multiple temples in one day, exploring each site thoroughly may require more time. It’s recommended to allocate at least two to three days to fully appreciate the beauty and historical significance of these ancient temples. Additionally, taking breaks between visits allows for a more enjoyable and immersive experience.

Conclusion

Whether you’re an avid history buff or simply seeking awe-inspiring sights, these five temples promise an unforgettable experience. Immerse yourself in the splendor of Angkor Wat and beyond, and let Cambodia’s timeless allure leave an indelible mark on your soul.

If you are considering Cambodian temple tours, Ftrip might be your ideal choice!

We’re thrilled to welcome you here! Our aim is to introduce you to the most incredible destinations in Southeast Asia, particularly Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia.

Thanks to our longstanding partnerships and reliable local connections, we’re able to customize our services to exceed every customer’s expectations, offering an exclusive selection of accommodations, destinations, and activities.

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