Our first day in the ruins of the old city of Angkor Wat

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Our first day in the ruins of the old city of Angkor Wat

The old city of Angkor Wat was another of the essentials on our list of places to visit … Well to be honest, on mine 😀 😀

One of the amazing views of Angkor Wat, in Siem Reap, just after sunrise

Family Travel Secret
Angkor Wat is the largest and best preserved Hindu temple and religious complex in the world.

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Even at very early hours there are lots of tourists ready to behold Angkor Wat, in Siem Reap, at sunrise

One of the most emblematic views of Angkor Wat, in Siem Reap, at sunrise

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We arrived in Siem Reap from Bangkok by bus. The Cambodian landscape is simply unique and really leaves you speechless … Huge moist green plains, a bright sky and a population with a genuine, pretty smile.

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Discovering Angkor Wat from dawn

Fábio thinks he made a mistake mentioning to me that it is recommended to enjoy the dawn from Angkor Wat temple, and maybe he’s right, because watching the sunrise from Angkor Wat became a priority. 🙂 On this trip we haven’t been up early in the morning very much, so it had to happen sometime … Not a biggie 🙂

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We should have got up at 4am to go in enough time to buy the tickets and find a good spot from which to enjoy the sunrise, but for some reason we didn’t hear the alarm and at 5am we got a call from reception telling us that our tuk tuk had been waiting for 20 minutes … Oops!

Being driven by tuk tuk to the entrance of Angkor Wat, in Siem Reap, at very early hours (5AM!!)

At 5:40am we bought the ticket (we decided to go for the three day one to make the most of our visit), which took no more than 3 minutes (with an instant photo included), and straight away we headed to the entrance.

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We positioned ourselves in front of the pond (moat) and waited patiently with everyone else who had gathered there, who obviously all had their cameras ready to immortalize the moment. Normally it would have seemed like a lot of people to us, but after having visited China we’re now almost never surprised by ‘large’ crowds of people 🙂 🙂

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That's how crowded Angkor Wat can be early in the morning

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It wasn’t an ideal sunrise with reddish and orange hues, but even so we thought it was lovely and magical. Definitely a moment to remember – and maybe in a few years we’ll try again and hope for better luck 🙂

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On the other hand… we can always cheat a bit with Photoshop… 🙂 🙂 (don’t worry, that’s the only one we are playing with a bit, all the others are not changed)

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Family Travel Secret
Apparently, the pond where the typical image of Angkor Wat is reflected is artificially filled with water. We assume that must be done especially in the dry season, so no-one goes home without their iconic image, but we couldn't see any pumps to back up that claim.

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And from the other side of the bridge…

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My idea was to continue the grand tour and leave Angkor Wat for another time of day, but Noah had another agenda. He wanted to investigate where the orangutan from the recent The Jungle Book movie was (or might be) 🙂

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Family Travel Secret
The construction of Angkor Wat dates from the 12th century. During that century it was the political and religious center of the Khmer Empire and it is believed that some 20,000 people lived within its walls.

It is believed that more than 20.000 people lived within the walls of Angkor Wat in Siem Reap

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We strolled through its corridors and hallways, many of which even had amazing bas-reliefs with inscriptions in Sanskrit,…

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… large towers and extensive courtyards.

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On the last day Noah and I returned for a final walk around the area. The problem is that after our three-day visit Noah was literally destroyed, so we only ‘investigated’ those hallways and areas with smaller crowds of people. That was tricky – it seems that Angkor Wat is always full 🙂 🙂 .

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Important facts:
Ticket per person for three days: $40. Children under the age of 12 don't pay. It looks that from February 2017 the three days ticket will cost $62; All-day rides on a tuk tuk for three people: $20. You can probably get it for less.

Ruth

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