Koh Ker is a remote archaeological site in northern Cambodia about 120 kilometres (75 mi) away from Siem Reap and the ancient site of Angkor. It is a jungle filled region that is sparsely populated. More than 180 sanctuaries were found in a protected area of 81 square kilometres (31 sq mi). Only about two dozen monuments can be visited by tourists because most of the sanctuaries are hidden in the forest and the whole area is not fully demined.

Koh Ker is the modern name for an important city of the Khmer empire. In inscriptions the town is mentioned as Lingapura (city of lingams) or Chok Gargyar (translated as city of glance, or as iron tree forest).

Within this article, you will learn everything about Koh Ker before visiting this ancient temple ruin.

Overview of Koh Ker Temple

Abandoned to the forests of the north, Koh Ker, capital of the Angkorian empire from 928 to 944 CE, is within day-trip distance of Siem Reap. Most visitors start at Prasat Krahom where impressive stone carvings grace lintels, doorposts and slender window columns. The principal monument is Mayan-looking Prasat Thom, a 55m-wide, 40m-high sandstone-faced pyramid whose seven tiers offer spectacular views across the forest. Koh Ker is 127km northeast of Siem Reap.

Long one of Cambodia’s most remote and inaccessible temple complexes, the opening of a toll road from Dam Dek (via Beng Mealea) put Koh Ker (pronounced ko-kayer) within striking distance of Siem Reap. To really appreciate the temples – the ensemble has 42 major structures in an area that measures 9km by 4km – it’s recommended that travellers overnight nearby.

Prasat Krahom, the second-largest structure at Koh Ker, is so named for the red bricks from which it is constructed. Sadly, none of the carved lions for which this temple was once known remain, though there’s still plenty to see, with stone archways and galleries leaning hither and thither. A naga-flanked causeway and a series of sanctuaries, libraries and gates lead past trees and vegetation-covered ponds. Just west of Prasat Krahom, at the far western end of a half-fallen colonnade, are the remains (most of the head) of a statue of Nandin.

The principal monument at Koh Ker is Prasat Thom. The staircase to the top is open to a limited number of visitors and the views are spectacular if you can stomach the heights. Some 40 inscriptions, dating from 932 to 1010, have been found here.

South of this central group is a 1185m-by-548m baray known as the Rahal. It is fed by the Sen River, which supplied water to irrigate the land in this arid area.

Some of the largest Shiva linga in Cambodia can still be seen in four temples about 1km northeast of Prasat Thom. The largest is found in Prasat Thneng, while Prasat Leung is similarly well endowed.

Among the many other temples that are found around Koh Ker, Prasat Bram is a real highlight. It consists of a collection of brick towers, at least two of which have been completely smothered by voracious strangler figs; the probing roots cut through the brickwork like liquid mercury.

Koh Ker is one of the least-studied temple areas from the Angkorian period and no restoration work was ever undertaken here. Louis Delaporte visited in 1880 during his extensive investigations into Angkorian temples. It was surveyed in 1921 by the great Henri Parmentier for an article in the Bulletin de l'École d'Extrême Orient. Archaeological surveys were also carried out by Cambodian teams in the 1950s and '60s, but all records vanished during the destruction of the 1970s, helping to preserve this complex as something of an enigma.

Several of the most impressive pieces in the National Museum in Phnom Penh come from Koh Ker, including the huge garuda (mythical half-man, half-bird creature) that greets visitors in the entrance hall and a unique carving depicting a pair of wrestling monkey-kings.

The site is about two and half hours away from Siem Reap, and guests can stay in the nearby village of Seyiong, 10 kms from the temples where there is a number of guests houses. Travelers can also stay in Koh Ker Jungle Lodge Homestay, a sustainable tourism project built in the village of Koh Ker in 2009, by booking in advance of arrival. The Koh Ker community in May 2019 open a basic wooden community rest house in the village.

Since 1992 the site of Koh Ker is on the UNESCO tentative world heritage list.

Planning your visit to Koh Ker Temple

Best time to visit Koh Ker

Regarding the season, the best time to visit Koh Ker is between October to February, when the weather is not hot, and the humidity is manageable. Since there is a lot of walking to be done, it's best to travel there during this high season. 

Regarding the time of the day, morning visits afford visitors some relief from hot sun, because the pyramid itself, and the climb up its tiers, are not shaded by trees. If you are combining your visit with a trip to Beng Mealea, it works well to visit Koh Ker first, to take advantage of the cool, before arriving at Beng Mealea around the time the large tour groups are busy taking their lunch break.

Although you are unlikely to find large numbers of visitors here, even in high season, you can be sure of a more leisurely stroll around the site during the quieter months of May to November. 

How to get there & around

Getting there

Koh Ker is about 120 km northeast of Siem Reap in a sparsely populated region. The road from Siem Reap to Koh Ker village is entirely paved. The short road from the village to the temple complex is unpaved, but well maintained.

Coming from Siem Reap, you have two options to reach the temple site:

  • Koh Ker and Beng Mealea: During a one day-trip you can visit Koh Ker and on the way back also Beng Mealea if you get up early. It takes about 2½ hours to reach the temple site of Koh Ker. You leave Siem Reap in the east and follow Hwy 6 till Dam Deik. There you find the market and after it, turn left.
  • Preah Vihear Temple and Koh Ker: Because of the excellent new roads it is possible to go to the temple of Preah Vihear via Anlong Veng at the border to Thailand and on the same day, on the way back via Kulen, to stop at Koh Ker to see the main temple complex, although with not enough time to visit the smaller sanctuaries.

There is no public transport to Koh Ker, but taxis and cars can be arranged at hotels and guesthouses. During the rainy season, the access to Koh Ker often is only possible by 4WD vehicle.

Getting around

There is no public transport around the area so you will have to use your own transport to visit the temples. The small and poor Koh Ker village with a few stilted houses and a school are one kilometre away from the main sanctuary. There are no other places of interest in the region you can visit without a motorbike and a guide who knows the site.

Information for Visitors: Not many taxi drivers from Siem Reap have been to Koh Ker. Tell the driver that you want to visit the main monuments (Prasat Thom/Prang) and make a tour along the ring road (take a map with you). The most important monuments you can find without help. There are blue signs at the border of the road or small boards along the ring-road with the name of the sanctuaries. You need about one or two hours to visit the main temple-complex and to have a break in one of the restaurants. Toilets are beside the parking area. You need one or two hours more to visit the monuments along the ring-road and along the road coming from Siem Reap. For a taxi you pay about US$100.

To follow the ring-road, start north of the parking area. Follow the street to Koh Ker village and take the first branch right. From the ring-road most of the ruins are visible. Sometimes you have to follow a small path (100-200 meters) leading to the temple.

If you want to view the best inscriptions and reliefs in Koh Ker, you must hire a car and guide. For this service you pay about US$140. Contact a local Cambodia travel agency.

A good plan of the site can be found in bookshops in Siem Reap.

Entrance fee

Tickets for Koh Ker ($10 adults, children under 12 years go free) can be purchased at the Beng Mealea ticket booth. There are good bathrooms at both the ticket kiosk itself, and additionally at the ticket check point closer to Koh Ker, which also has covered picnic benches.

What to see at Koh Ker Temple?

The ancient Khmer city is in a remote jungle location with more than 180 ruined temples. About two dozens of the ruins can be visited by tourists.

  • The main temple complex has a linear plan, beginning with two buildings, the so-called palaces. You can find them in the east of the parking area. Both of them consist of four rectangular buildings with several rooms. To the west of the parking area, behind the restaurants, the remains of a huge cruciform entrance-pavilion (gopuram) with annex buildings are visible. Behind this structures is the east side of the rectangular outer wall of the main temple complex which encloses two courts. The building complex of the eastern court is called Prasat Thom. A tower built of red brick, the Prasat Krahom, gives access to the eastern court. The temple area in the middle of the eastern court is surrounded by a moat. On the east side and on the west side, a dam with Naga-balustrades crosses the moat. The complex inside the moat consists of the ruins of two inner walls, many rectangular structures, 21 brick towers, two libraries, and a central sanctuary, all in a bad condition. In the western court stands a huge seven-tiered pyramid, 36 m high, called Prang. This unique pyramid, resembling some Mayan temples, is the largest building at this site. As inscriptions say, that a colossal linga (phallus-symbol, symbol of the Hindu-god Shiva), more than four m high, stood on the platform on the top, probably in a huge shrine. In ancient times the pyramid including the shrine could have measured about 60 m in height. A good quality wooden staircase at the rear right of the pyramid has been built (Jan 2014). All can now safely climb to the top of the temple and enjoy the great view over a lonely landscape of forest with the distant Dangrek Mountains on the Thai Border to the north and the Koulen Mountain Range 70 km to the south.

  • The Rahal is a reservoir (baray), about 1,200 m long and 550 m wide. The Rahal is nearly dry and hidden in the forest. The best chance to get a view of the reservoir is to stop along the road coming from Siem Reap.
  • Monuments at the east and the south side of the baray: Four square shrines stand at the beginning of the ring road on the left side. In some of them is a huge linga (phallus symbol), about 2 m high. Other sanctuaries are of different architecture. Some have one, others two enclosures. Some consist of one prasat (tower), some of three prasats, some have annex buildings. In the south of the baray stands the Prasat Damrei (the elephant temple, damrei = elephant). This sanctuary has an enclosure and one tower. It was flanked by four beautiful elephant sculptures. Just two of them are left at the site, the others are in museums.
  • Monuments along the road to Siem Reap: Prasat Pram has an enclosure, three brick towers, and two shrines. The tower at the right is overgrown with hundreds of small roots. One of the shrines has a huge tree on the top and was possibly a fire-sanctuary. Prasat Chen has a wall and consists of three half collapsed black laterite towers.

The temples at Koh Ker are built of different materials: brick, sandstone, or laterite. Many of the brick temples at this site are in a much better state than the stone sanctuaries and stone shrines. That's because the bricks are of small size and very good quality.

One temple (east of the baray) shows the style of Banteay Srei. This indicates that some temples were built after the capital was moved away from Koh Ker.

Some of the most impressive sculptures of the Khmer Empire were found in Koh Ker. They were either stolen or are in museums (National Museum in Phnom Penh and Musée Guimet in Paris).
The entry fee is US$10 payable at the ticket office 3 km south of the parking area.

Koh Ker Tours

If you stay in Siem Reap and have time for a one day-tour, then go to Koh Ker. The rural area is lovely and the temples are very different from those of Angkor. There are several possibilities:

Dry season, one day

Take a taxi or ask your hotel or an agency for a car. Fix the price in advance (US$100). US$5 for a short part of private street (near Beng Mealea) should be included. Take a map of Koh Ker with you because not many taxi drivers have been there. The driver should take you to the main sanctuary beside the parking lot and afterwards drive along the ring-road. Different combinations:

  • Go to Koh Ker and spend the whole time at the temple site. Sit in the restaurant in front of the huge entrance-pavilion. Enjoy the silence, the atmosphere and the absence of tourists. Take a walk (about 15 minutes) to the small village of Koh Ker.
  • See the temples of Koh Ker and on the way back visit the temple of Beng Mealea. This sanctuary is much more overgrown, but is much less crowded. You need about 90 minutes to visit the temple (entrance fee US$10). Some restaurants are in front of the entrance.
  • Visit the temples in Koh Ker, then go back to Dam Deik and then to the border of the Tonle Sap Lake. Visit one of the stilted villages nearby. Not many tourists will be there. For this additional tour you have to pay about US$40.
  • If you are deeply interested in archaeology, ask a travel agency for a driver who knows the site or for a driver and a guide. A guide can show you the inscriptions and some reliefs and can explain the monuments.

Dry season, two or more days

Book a 4WD-tour or a motorbike-tour (dirt bike-tour). There are different possibilities (contact one of the agencies in Siem Reap), for instance:

Wet season

You have to ask in Siem Reap if the access to Koh Ker is possible by normal car (taxi) or if you need a 4WD vehicle. You will need more time than during the dry season, but the excursion from Siem Reap to Koh Ker and back is always possible in one day.


There are plans to support the poor local community by offering oxcart-rides. If there are oxcarts you should use them to visit the temples along the ring-road. For this tour you need about two hours and pay US$10. With this money a whole family can survive two days.


There are two open-air restaurants near the parking area in front of the double-sanctuary Prasat Thom/Prang. You can have some snacks, different styles of noodle soup or fried rice and sometimes even fresh fish. Coffee and tea and all sorts of soft cold drinks, water in bottles and fresh coconut juice are available here. If you want to have an evening meal it is necessary to order it in advance otherwise the cooks go back to their families.

There are a couple of basic Khmer cafes in the village of Sray Yong, 10 km south.


Not many visitors wish to sleep in Koh Ker, because most of the tourists staying in Siem Reap like to return to their hotel the same day. If you want to stay overnight at Koh Ker, there are just two possibilities:

There is a nice, stilted house at Koh Ker village about 1 km behind the main temple-complex. Hidden Cambodia is using it for own groups. Camping is not allowed at the temple site, but it can be organized in the village nearby (hammocks).

Stay safe

Land mines are a danger here, the area of the main temple complex, the temples along the main road and the sanctuaries along the ring-road have been cleared; but the areas outside of them have not. The "Danger Mines" signs are no joke. And even if there are no warning signs, don't enter the forest to find more temples.

Snakes: Rarely small poisonous snakes can be found in the region of Koh Ker. Wear good shoes and look where you put your hands and feet.

Climbing: Don't climb to the top of the pyramid: it's dangerous and forbidden. If you fall down the nearest doctor or hospital is quite far away.

Trails in the forest: There are numerous of trails in the forest around the main monuments. Don't follow them without a guide as otherwise you could get lost.

Drinking water: Koh Ker is a dry and hot region. If you visit the shrines and temples along the ring-road or if you make a walk to the village, take water with you because there are no shops or restaurants. The only local place to get cold drinks is in front of the main temple complex.

Malaria is a risk here, so long sleeves and trousers after dusk are essential.

Here is the vaccines you need for travelling to Cambodia


Although there is a small primary school a kilometre north of the complex, the locals are often annoyed by tourists who visit near-daily expecting a guided tour of the classes. The students are often busy learning and do not wish to be disturbed by curious and disrespectful Westerners.

History of Koh Ker Temple

Ancient time

+ Jayavarman IV

Jayavarman IV ruled from 928 to 941 at Koh Ker. He was a believed to have been the local king at this remote site, possibly his homeland, before he became king of the whole empire. That could explain why he had his residence at Koh Ker and not at Roluos (Hariharalaya) or at Yashodharapura (Angkor) like the kings before him.

Some historians think that Jayavarman IV was an usurper; but, the majority of them believe that he was a legitimate ruler who could ascend to the throne because he married a half-sister of king Yasovarman I (889 – 900). What is certain is that the two sons of Yasovarman I (Harshavarman I, who ruled from 900 to 922 and Isanavarman II, who ruled from 922 to 925?) had no children.

In the short time that Jayavarman IV reigned in Koh Ker, an ambitious building program was realised. That was only possible because of a restrictive system of raising taxes as seen on inscriptions found at the site. About 40 temples, the unique seven-tiered pyramid and a huge baray (water-reservoir) were built. Under Jayavarman IV, the Koh Ker-style was developed and the art of sculpture reached a pinnacle.

+ Harshavarman II

After the death of Jayavarman IV, the designated prince became did not take his place. Harshavarman II (another son of Jayavarman IV) claimed the throne. Like his father, he ruled at Koh Ker (941 – 944) but after three years he died; likely not due to natural causes. None of the temples at Koh Ker can be ascribed to him. His follower on the throne, a cousin of his, returned Roluos (Hariharalaya) to the seat of power.

+ Koh Ker after 944 AD

Even after 944, as the capital of the Khmer Empire had changed back to the plains north of the Tonle Sap-lake, more temples were built at the site of Koh Ker. An inscription mentions the reign of Udayadityavarman I in 1001. At the beginning of the 13th century the last sanctuary was realised there. Under Jayavarman VII, the Prasat Andong Kuk, a so-called hospital-chapel, was built, one of more than 100 of hospital-sanctuaries built under this ruler

Modern research and study

+ 19th century

In the second part of the 19th century, French adventurers ranged the forests around the site of Koh Ker while hunting game. They brought word of the structures in the area back to France. The French researchers Lunet de Lajonquière and Étienne Aymonier came to Koh Ker. They saw the main temple-complex Prasat Thom/Prang, the Baray and a group of linga-shrines.

They also discovered a few subsections of a chaussée (i.e. highway) with a breadth of more than 8 m (26 ft). They supposed that a road once connected Koh Ker with Wat Phu (today in southern Laos). Around 1880, members of a French expedition arrived at Koh Ker and looted numerous statues and reliefs. These pieces are now in the Musée Guimet in Paris.

+ 20th century

At the beginning of the 20th century, art historians realised that a full-fledged style was developed at Koh Ker. Georges Coedès concluded from inscriptions that Koh Ker was capital of the Khmer empire (928 – 944 AD) under the reign of Jayavarman IV and his follower Harshavarman II. In the 1930s, again French researchers came to Koh Ker.

They discovered numerous monuments and counted fifty sanctuaries in an area of 35 square kilometres (8,649 acres). Henry Parmentier made a number of drawings. After an interruption because of the reign of terror of the Khmer rouge, research at Koh Ker continued by APSARA, French, Japanese and Australian scientists.

+ 21st century

At the beginning of the 21st century, scientists concluded that not all of the monuments could have been built in the short time when Koh Ker was capital of the Khmer empire (928 – 944 AD). A new era started at Koh Ker as photographs made by satellites were analyzed. In 2004 the protected area was extended to 81 square kilometres (31 sq mi; 20,016 acres).

For five years, Japanese researchers explored and described 184 monuments, including documenting their exact locations. The Australian researcher Damian Evans and his team were able to verify Lajonquière's theory that there once was a Khmer route between Koh Ker and Wat Phu, probably the most important strategic road of the Khmer empire.

Excavations in December 2015 by Cambodian and international teams near Prasat Thom and the Rahal in the ancient urban core area of Koh Ker have yielded radiocarbon dates that clearly place significant habitation and activity beginning as early as the 7th-8th centuries CE - often noted as the Chenla period by historians. Some pottery types may date to the earlier Funan period.

Over 24,000 artifacts and ecofacts were recovered from three test sites. Artifacts are mostly pottery fragments with local and exotic types representing over 1000 years of site use throughout the occupational sequence. Exotic pottery types include Chinese stoneware and glazed ware from the Song Yuan periods. Other exotic pottery include Thai and Vietnamese stoneware that generally date to the late Angkor and post-Angkor periods.

Possible Persian pottery dating to the 9th century has been noted as well. Thus, Koh Ker has been linked to long distance value chains for considerable time spans. Although the area may have been significantly repurposed during the 10th century construction-boom heyday of Jayavarman IV, site use and activity continued well beyond the 10th century. Intensity of activities and density of occupation may have oscillated over time in relation to political and socio-economic factors.

Natural and human resource management variables as well as environmental phenomena may have also played significant roles related to changes in popularity, population and productivity. The project is part of the Nalanda - Sriwijaya Centre (NSC) Field School led by Dr. D. Kyle Latinis (NSC) and Dr. Ea Darith (APSARA National Authority) with further support from the National Authority for Preah Vihear (NAPV).


With art and sculpture becoming particularly celebrated and encouraged during Jayavarman IV’s time, the site would have been rich with masterpieces.

After the site’s heyday, the sites were looted of their impressive sculptures, leaving the current site bereft of these treasures. Many have since been shown in museums or private collections but some pieces, still at large, remain classed as stolen art.

Laterite, sandstone and brick materials were used to construct Koh Ker. High quality laterite and sandstone were conveniently quarried locally and transported in large quantities, with relative ease. The brick sanctuaries in Koh Ker can be seen to be in good condition even today, thanks to the small and solid bricks used, and the organic ‘mortar’. Some Koh Ker temples’ roofs were constructed using wood and then covered with tiles.


Before Koh Ker became capital of the Khmer empire (928 AD), numerous sanctuaries with Shiva-lingas existed already. Koh Ker was a cult site where Shiva had been worshipped a long time. Also Jayavarman IV was an ardent worshipper of this Hindu god. As later kings (whose residence was not in Koh Ker) changed from Hinduism to Buddhism they gave orders to make the necessary adjustments at their temples. Because of its remoteness, the sanctuaries at Koh Ker were spared from these interventions.


Several inscriptions were found which mention Koh Ker as capital of the empire in Siem Reap, Battambang, Takeo, and Kampong Cham (city). From inscriptions discovered at Koh Ker, it is estimated that more than ten thousand people lived at Koh Ker when it was the capital (928 – 944 AD).

The inscriptions explain how manpower was organized: taxes in form of rice were raised in the whole country and served to provide for the workers who came from different provinces. An inscription at Prasat Damrei says that the shrine on the top of the state temple (Prang) houses a lingam of about 4.5 m (14 ft 9 in) and that the erection of this Shiva-symbol gave a lot of problems".

A Sanskrit inscription at Prasat Thom gives evidence of the consecration of a Shiva-lingam 921 AD which was worshipped under the name of Tribhuvaneshvara ("Lord of the Threefold World").

Style of Koh Ker

None of the immense, expressive, and beautiful sculptures are left at the site. Numerous of them were stolen and are standing now in museums and in private collections. Some statues were put away by government organizations to protect them from looters. Many masterpieces of Koh Ker are now in the collection of the National Museum in Phnom Penh.

In late 2011, the remote location drew media attention worldwide when Sotheby's attempted to sell a statue of a mythical Khmer Empire warrior. In March 2012, the US and Cambodian governments filed court documents to seize the statue that they purport was illegally removed from the site. A twin statue, also linked to the Koh Ker site, is on display at the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, California.

Ancient city Koh Ker

The center of the ancient city was in the north-east corner of the baray (water-tank). Inscriptions say at least ten thousand inhabitants lived there during the rule of Jayavarman IV. Past researchers believed a square wall with a side length of 1.2 km (1,312 yd) protected the town. But new research indicates that the linear structures found in this part of Koh Ker were dykes of ancient canals. Concerning the wooden buildings of the Khmer time no artefacts are found.

Laterite, sandstone, and brick were used as construction materials in Koh Ker. Laterite and sandstone of excellent quality were quarried in great quantities in the region of Koh Ker, so the transport of the stones to the site was no problem. The bricks produced were small, regular, and very solid. A thin layer of organic mortar of unknown formula was used, possibly some form of plant sap.

After more than a millennium the brick sanctuaries in Koh Ker are in a much better condition than the laterite ones. The roofs of some temples in Koh Ker had a wood construction and were covered with tiles. In these monuments, holes for the wooden girders are found. The main sanctuary (the temple-complex Prasat Thom/Prang) was not standing in the middle of the ancient city.

Koh Ker Photos

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Taking a cruise on the fascinating Mekong River offers a unique and memorable travel experience. The Mekong River, one of the longest rivers in Asia, flows through several countries, including China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Each destination along the river offers its own distinct cultural, historical, and natural attractions. In this article, we will go over what you can expect when cruising the Mekong River. 


Preah Vihear Temple (Prasat Preah Vihear) is an ancient Hindu temple built during the period of the Khmer Empire, that is situated atop a 525-metre (1,722 ft) cliff in the Dângrêk Mountains, in the Preah Vihear province, Cambodia. In 1962, following a lengthy dispute between Cambodia and Thailand over ownership, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague ruled that the temple is in Cambodia.

Affording a view for many kilometers across a plain, Prasat Preah Vihear has the most spectacular setting of all the temples built during the six-century-long Khmer Empire. As a key edifice of the empire's spiritual life, it was supported and modified by successive kings and so bears elements of several architectural styles.

Preah Vihear is unusual among Khmer temples in being constructed along a long north–south axis, rather than having the conventional rectangular plan with orientation toward the east. The temple gives its name to Cambodia's Preah Vihear province, in which it is now located, as well as the Khao Phra Wihan National Park which borders it in Thailand's Sisaket province, though it is no longer accessible from Thailand.

On July 7, 2008, Preah Vihear was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


Deep in the forests of Cambodia’s Siem Reap province, the elegant spires of an ancient stone city soar skyward above the sprawling complex of Angkor Archaeological Park.

The Khmer Empire’s various capitals thrived here from the 9th to 15th centuries, while their rulers presided over an empire that stretched from Myanmar (Burma) to Vietnam. Including forested areas and newly discovered “suburbs” Angkor covers more than 400 square kilometers.

Though just one of hundreds of surviving temples and structures, the massive Angkor Wat is the most famed of all Cambodia’s temples - it appears on the nation’s flag - and it is revered for good reason. The 12th century “temple-mountain” was built as a spiritual home for the Hindu god Vishnu. The temple is an architectural triumph laden with artistic treasures like the bas-relief galleries that line many walls and tell enduring tales of Cambodian history and legend.

In other parts of Angkor such art depicts scenes of daily life - offering scholars a precious window into the past.

Reading the below epic guide for Angkor Archaeological Park, you will have all the information you need from its history, maps, best time to visit and so on to have the best out of your Angkor tours


Banteay Kdei Temple (Prasat Banteay Kdei), meaning "A Citadel of Chambers", also known as "Citadel of Monks' cells", is a Buddhist temple in Angkor, Cambodia. It is located southeast of Ta Prohm and east of Angkor Thom. 

Built in the mid-12th to early 13th centuries AD during the reign of Jayavarman VII (who was posthumously given the title "Maha paramasangata pada"), it is in the Bayon architectural style, similar in plan to Ta Prohm and Preah Khan, but less complex and smaller. Its structures are contained within two successive enclosure walls and consist of two concentric galleries from which emerge towers, preceded to the east by a cloister.

This Buddhist monastic complex is currently dilapidated due to faulty construction and poor quality of sandstone used in its buildings and is now undergoing renovation. Banteay Kdei had been occupied by monks at various intervals over the centuries till 1960s.


Just east of Angkor Thom’s Victory Gate is Chau Say Tevoda. It was probably built during the second quarter of the 12th century, under the reign of Suryavarman II, and dedicated to Shiva and Vishnu. It has been renovated by the Chinese to bring it up to the condition of its twin temple, Thommanon.


Thommanon Temple is a Hindu temple site that's covered in intricate carvings and surrounded by forests in Angkor. The temple is in relatively excellent condition, thanks to extensive restoration work in the 1960s.

It was constructed about the same time as Angkor Wat. The style of architecture is quite evident in the towers and carvings, which are in very good condition. During the rainy season, the dampened sandstone offers great photo opportunities.

Part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the complex dates back between the 11th and 12th centuries. It is about 600 metres east of the Victory Gate of Angkor Thom, just opposite Chau Say Tevoda. Even before restoration, Thommanon was in much a better condition than Chau Say Tevoda. Unlike the latter, which was built using wooden beams enclosed in stone, Thommanon Temple's entire structure was made out of stone. 


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Best Time to Visit
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Tourist Visa Policy
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Budget & Currency
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Getting Flight There
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Getting Around
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Local Etiquette
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Safety & Precautions
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Tipping Customs
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Useful addresses
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Internet & Phone
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Buying & Bargaining
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Packing List
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Travel Insurance
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bee-white Vietnam
A land of staggering natural beauty and cultural complexities, of dynamic megacities and hill-tribe villages, Vietnam is both exotic and compelling.
bee-white Thailand
Friendly and food-obsessed, hedonistic and historic, cultured and curious, Thailand tempts visitors with a smile as golden as the country's glittering temples and tropical beaches.
bee-white Myanmar
It's a new era for this extraordinary and complex land, where the landscape is scattered with gilded pagodas and the traditional ways of Asia endure.
bee-white Laos
Vivid nature, voluptuous landscapes and a vibrant culture collide with a painful past and optimistic future to make Laos an enigmatic experience for the adventurous.
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