Thursday, August 16, 2007


Smiley face

There are a few temples in Siam Reap that shouldn’t be missed. Of course the first will be the Angkor Wat. The second place that you shouldn’t miss is the Bayon. Now these are where the famous smiling heads are found, 218 of them to be precise. Every single space in the area is covered with one of these huge 4 headed statues. What is interesting is no 2 photos will look the same coz every angle you move will give you a different shot.

Kiss meThere’s also so many levels to the building. The bottom looks pretty rundown with fallen pillars and then you’ll find some of those steep but short staircases. And then you’ll face this huge pyramid like structure with hidden chambers and sun lit chambers. The smilling faces with the most gorgeous lips are found everywhere across the top part of the building. It is just an amazing sight.

How are you ?
We ended up going twice coz my friends cam ran out of batteries and the first time we were there the place was overflowing with people! We decided to try our luck by going really early when most of the crowds would be busy snapping the sunrise at Angkor.

5 Faces tWO fACES

So the next day we headed back to bayon at about 7*am riding through the chilly giant tree forest Angkor lies in and yes it was worth the chills. The forest gets colder as you venture deeper – and you’ll be amazed at how clean it is kept. There’s the one thing you have to give credit to the Siam Reap folks. The place is amazing when it’s all quiet with nary a soul nearby. Taking photos is also easier but most of all it’s so serene, you could just sit and stare at the beauty of the place.

White and Black Come with me

Grace You’ll also find these lady monks in white all around the temples, most are quite reluctant to be photographed unless you pay them or buy insense sticks from them but the rest are probably some of the most photographed people in Siam Reap. There’s just something about those white ladies against the stark grey of the stones.

Maybe the temple was built by 2 different contractors. You’ll understand why I said that when you get down the temple through the back exit. Suddenly the lines of the temple are no longer curvy and sculptured, gone are the lovely smiles of that beautiful lips, instead its replaced by plain pillars and boxy walls. So it is pretty different. So don’t miss Bayon if you ever decide to go to Cambodia.

Smilling in the blue Two face

Blue Note for photographers : if you want to get a shot of some damsel in ancient clothings then you’ll have to wait till after 8 when the troops come in. USD1 for 3 shots but you’ll have problems framing the shot as by then the place will be swarming with ppl it becomes quite de-motivating!

Read the previous posts on Cambodia below
You want photo? 1 Usd!
Siam Reap
Travelling in Siam Reap
20th Century's Hell on Earth
Majestic Angkor
Temple circuit : Siam Reap


yowchuan said...

Very nice pictures from Angkor Wat.

I will be going there this Sunday, to Siem Reap and Pnomn Penh, hopefully I can make a quick trip to the Angkor Wat, since my schedule is rather tight over there :-(

visithra said...

u should read my previous posts

try taking a one day pass n seeing just angkor wat, bayon n ta phrom - those r the 3 best places

have fun

BawangMerah said...

The smiling Jayavarman, is eeriliy scary.

Sundar Narayanan said...

amazing photos Visithra..

loved the last one.


Twisted DNA said...

Thanks for sharing. Everybody talks about Angkor Wat but never heard of Bayon.

The pictures are amazing. The misty green forests are quite sight! I wish I could be there!

anasalwa said...

What an amazing adventures you had. I like the 10th shot you took(two head statues smiling faces). The statues have been there for a long time, but we still could see the smiling faces. thank you for sharing.

gina said...

Great shots of the elderly ladies! Yeah. My favorite is still Bayon. Surpassed Angkor Wat.

visithra said...

on an old comments answering spree ;p sorry for the late replies

bm : he is so not scary ;p

sundar : thanks ;)

dna : i guess cos the lump the experience together - u should go there - tis gorgeous

ana : thanks - i love those smilley faces so peaceful -

gina : indeed me too ;p