22 septembre 2007

Ta Som

. From the eastern Mebon, Ta Som appears on the right, a little after the 13th kilometre marker stone, as a tower with four faces of Lokesvara entwined within the roots of a giant Ficus tree that crowns it perfectly. Several of the roots have pierced the vault and descend straight to the ground, obstructing part of the passageway. Cruciform in plan, this gopura is flanked by two small rooms and adjoins the 200 by 240 metre laterite wall of the external (the third) enclosure. Its western lintel shows the standing... [Lire la suite]
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21 septembre 2007

Neak Pean

. Just beyond Krol Ko, the 300 metre route leads to the small island of Neak Pean. This is the “Mebon” of the Prah Khan baray (the “Jayatataka” of the inscription) measuring 3,500 metres by 900 - the two monuments being aligned on the same axis. The island, of 350 metres each side, was defined by a system of laterite steps with pavements set on the axes. Small elephants must once have stood at the four corners since there is still one in place - to the north-east. King Jayavarman VII placed the “Jayatataka” - the “... [Lire la suite]
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20 septembre 2007

Prah Kan

The large ensemble of Prah Khan, forming a rectangle of 700 metres by 800 surrounded by moats, covers an area of 56 hectares. It is, like Ta Prohm with which it has many analogies, an example typical of the formula adopted by Jayavarman VII: - all the elements of a vast composition compressed into a relatively small space (the third enclosure contains all of its buildings in only 175 by 200 metres), - the transformation of an elegant initial plan into a veritable architectural chaos by the... [Lire la suite]
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19 septembre 2007

Pre Rup

. An impressive work of impeccable proportions, constructed almost entirely of warm coloured materials (laterite and brick) at a time when sandstone was only used sparingly, Pre Rup needs to be visited either early in the morning or at sunset. Its relatively recent clearing required particular attention, the brick monuments needing special care in the removal of the soil, the fallen materials and the entangling roots. Later by a few years than the eastern Mebon and identical in style, Pre Rup is the last... [Lire la suite]
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18 septembre 2007

East Mebon

. Measuring two kilometres north-south by seven kilometres east-west, East Mebon is enclosed by an earth embankment and marked at each of its four corners with a stele set in a shelter. Identified as the “Eastern Lake” it was realised during the reign of Yasovarman towards the end of the 9th century and supplied by the Stung Siem Reap. This vast reservoir, that served to regulate the flow of the river and to irrigate the surrounding plain, is today given over to rice fields, though if one is to judge by the laterite... [Lire la suite]
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17 septembre 2007

Banteay Samre

. The Samres are an indigenous people of uncertain origin - they populated the region at the foot of the Kulen hills, and the inhabitants of Pradak are considered as their descendants. The monument itself has its own story, related with particular relish by Mr Baradat. It tells of the accession to the throne of a poor farmer of Samre origin named Pou, who specialised in the cultivation of sweet cucumbers - the seeds of which he had received in some supernatural manner. He made homage of his first harvest to the king, who... [Lire la suite]
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15 septembre 2007

Banteay Srei

The miniature temple of Banteay Srei is located twenty kilometres north-east of the Bayon. Situated in the middle of the forest, small in scale and in a region lacking in archaeological remains, one can understand why it escaped general attention for so long - its discovery by lieutenant Marec, an officer in the geographic service, was in fact only made in 1914. The very nature of the material used - a hard red sandstone that can be worked like wood - has inspired the artist not to carve in volume,... [Lire la suite]
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14 septembre 2007

FAQ Angkor

. How many days to visit Angkor? One day definitely is not enough. It is like wishing to visit the Louvres in 1 hour. Three days would allow you to see and visit the major temples. We chose the One week pass, to take our time, and not develop the temple fatigue. That proved the best of choice. Are all temples the same? Definitely not. Built on a period of several centuries, they are very diverse in the size, shape and architecture. What are the best temples? This is highly... [Lire la suite]
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13 septembre 2007

Angkor

. The Angkorian period spans more than 600 years from AD 802 to 1432, during which the temples of Angkor were built and the Khmer empire consolidated its position as one of the great powers of Southeast Asia. This era encompasses periods of decline and revival, and wars with rival powers in Vietnam, Thailand, and Myanmar. The Angkorian period began with the rule of Jayavarman II (802-50). He was the first to unify Cambodia’s competing kingdom before the birth of Angkor. His court was situated at Phnom... [Lire la suite]
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12 septembre 2007

Life by the lake

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