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SIEM REAP

Visitor can travel to Siem Reap either on regular domestic flight, overland or by speedboat along the magnificent Tonle Sap to explore new cultures, meeting local fishermen in their floating villages and testing ethnic food fares.

The Angkor Wat temple, the mysterious Hindu temple built by king Suryavarman II at the height of the Khmer Empire in the 12th century in the world’s largest temple complex. Consists of many sandstone temples, chapels, causeways, terraces and reservoirs, it is believed that the gods assisted the architect whose identity remains a mystery until today.

The walls of the temple are covered with thousands of carvings depicting scenes confrontation between the gods and the demons of classical Hindu mythology.

Yet on some are genial-dancing ladies known as “Apsara” and on others depicting royal processions with the king and other royalties riding on elephants. Whatever it is, the carvings are clearly masterpieces in the true sense.To fully explore and appreciate the splendors and marvels of the Angkor Temple Complex, one may probably need to stay for about a month or so in Siem Reap.

For the tourist with limited time on hand, tour packages to the sites of Angkor are systematically categorized to cover the magnificent Angkor Wat and popular temples in the vicinity. The Small Circuit: Being the main Angkor Wat Temple itself which is said to be one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The Big Circuit: The Angkor Thom Temple and the temples surrounding the Angkor Thom.

The Big Three: This would take between 1 to 2 days depending on one’s level of interests. The main Angkor Wat temple, the Bayon Temple and the temples inside and outside of Angkor Thom. While touring the temples, it may be interesting to observe the nine distinct periods of the marvelous Angkor architecture. Most tour guides are pretty proficient and this should add colours to wonders. They are:

- Preroup style (947-965)
- Preah Ko style (875-893)
- Bakheng style (893-925)
- Koh Ker style (925-945)
- Khleang style (965-1010)
- Bayon style (1177-1230)
- Bapuon style (1010-1080)
- Angkor Wat style (1110-1175)
- Banteay Srei style (967-1000)

Information: Ministry of Tourism of Cambodia

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The Royal Embassy of Cambodia in Canberra
5 Canterbury Crescent, Deakin, ACT 2600, Australia
Telephone: +61 2 6273 1259 or +61 2 6273 1154, Fax: +61 2 6273 1053
Email: CambodianEmbassy@ozemail.com.au