Hashtags are equally obnoxious and hilarious to me.  I met some American guys from New Jersey who loved the tag #turndownforwat, so here we go, its the title of this entry and perhaps one of the last times I get to use it.

Indiana Jones made an impression on me growing up and I really wanted to be an archaeologist. One of the biggest moments I have been looking forward to has been going to Siem Reap to visit one of the seven wonders of the world, Angkor Wat, the worlds largest religious monument. In order to do some research and in anticipation of our big day, Melita and I not only watched Tomb Raider but we planned our outfits for our 4:30 am pick up time to head to the Wat. (Please know that I am joking about Tomb Raider preparing us)  Angkor Wat allowed me to see a beautiful sunrise and feel like a kid walking throughout temples that are from the 9th to 14th century. It is truly a magical sight and my photographs don’t do it justice.

Angkor Wat translates to “city of temples” and orients to a different direction, west, than other temples as it is believed to be a mausoleum. I can’t speak in depth to the stylistic traits to the temple or to the Buddhist religion but I did learn that it is one of the best structured pre-industrial cities ever planned and that it was a walled city with a moat. I spent $43 to cover an entrance fee and be taken around in a mini van starting at 4:30 am until I wanted to end. I only made it until about 3 pm and had a few breaks when there were flash rains. The three big temples I saw were:
1. Angkor Wat – saw a beautiful sunrise here and observed the many religious bas reliefs in stone.
2. Angkor Thom – translates to “great city” and has 216 faces, also called Bayon.
3. Ta Prohm – where Lara Croft was filmed. Abandoned for a couple of hundred years and built after Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm beautifully shows how nature has taken over strangling many of the stones.  

 Just a few snapshots of my most memorable day of travel.

 

Me during sunrise at Angkor Wat

Tomb Raiders, Kelly, Evelyn, myself, Melita and Shannon

 

Beautiful sculptures in the wall

 

Hallways at Angkor Wat

Approaching Angkor Thom

Bayon at Angkor Thom

Made a new friend, we are all smiles

Hallways at Angkor Thom

Rubble at Ta Prohm

Me at Ta Prohm

Ta Prohm

Melita, myself and Evelyn at Ta Prohm