Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Angkor Wat

The temples of Angkor Wat are the prime tourist destination of Cambodia so of course I had to visit them. The tuk-tuk driver who had taken me to the hotel asked if he could be my driver for the following day for $15 and I said that would be fine. He was very pleasant and he spoke reasonable English.

The dedicated tourist gets there before sunrise to experience the best view. That means getting there about 4:30 to 5:00. I am not that dedicated but I knew I should still get there early to avoid the heat later in the day so I arranged to be picked up at 5:30. My driver was there on time and away we went.

I really enjoy riding in tuk-tuks and looking at the passengers in other tuk-tuks, I think a lot of people get a kick out of it. You putter along with the breeze cooling you down. Tuk-tuks rule the road, particularly at intersections. Cars don't want to run into them. 

Tuk-tuk drivers in SR mostly wear helmets whereas they don't in PP.

We passed a school where parents waited with their kids.

The road north to Angkor Wat was relatively deserted. This is the low season so the temples would not be as crowded.

About 8 miles north of SR, we reached the area of the temples where there is a large lake.

And suddenly, there was the temple with the sun still putting on a good display.

There were already quite a lot of tourists who had come early. Some were finished with this temple. By the way, you no longer have to bring a passport photo along. When you buy your ticket, they take a digital photo of you which becomes part of your printed ticket. It cost $20 for a one day pass.

People still taking photos of the sunrise.

I'm not going to include much more description and just let the photos speak for themselves. For the most part, I did not have much clue what I was looking at.

This temple is huge and there are a lot of photos in this blog so don't feel you have to see them all.

It looked like she was playing drums.

You will see more people than I usually put in my blogs. Sometimes they are there to show how large buildings are. here I just want to show that it wasn't all that crowded.

A horse grazing near the temple.

Every now and then you would get a never ending view like this looking down corridors that linked different parts of the temple.

They used to have water in these pits.

There are many individual temples in Angkor Wat.

Impossibly steep stairs.

Later in the day you could apparently climb up for a better view. They were closed when I walked past.

A weathered version of the similar stone in the photo above this one.

A stone that looked like it had recently broken off.

This intricate carving was right next to the one in the photo above it. One stone had weathered much less than the other.

A very long corridor open to the air on the right hand side.

This and the following were carved on the wall of the corridor.

After about an hour I think I had seen as much as I could so I took the picturesque route back to the entrance away from the crowds. It was still cool enough for it to be quite pleasant strolling along.


From this tree.

The horse again.

Flat out.

I followed this group of Germans who I saw again a few times at the next few temples. I think Clare and Ric would look spiffy in these.

Ticket inspectors at the entrance with their umbrellas. It was starting to get quite hot.

My driver was still having his breakfast so I lazed in the tuk-tuk until he turned up. The purple seat cover was the way I identified which one to get into. I was already drinking a lot of water.

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