Showing posts with label Siam Reap. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Siam Reap. Show all posts

Monday, July 15, 2013

Day 3 : My Indian Jones kinda of adventure in Beng Mealea, Siam Reap, Cambodia

I am going to blog about my Cambodia 3rd day where we are going to Beng Mealea . And according to Tripadvisor's comments, we gotta be ready to be like Indian Jones to visit this ruined temple because this temple is in original condition and there is almost no restoration work at all.

Breakfast before departing for our long journey!

Hotel Food : The pork noodle soup is very tasty . And I do like the taste of Cambodian pork, seems to me more sweet and chewy!

Bacon was really good too, even though this is a hotel food! I extra ordered this for USD 2!

Speaking of Beng Mealea, it is a temple in the Angkor Wat style located 40 km east of the main group of temples at Angkor, Cambodia, on the ancient royal highway to Preah Khan Kompong Svay. We took a tuk tuk there and lucky for us it was a cloudy day!

I would suggest next time anyone who plan to go there, try to get an air-condition car/van because it is a long journey on red soil road about 1.5hour-2hour from Siam Reap town. So you must wear a surgical mask & not to wear white shirt if you intend to take the tuk tuk!

Along the way we saw cows carrying carts, just like how we usually see in movie !

It's dry season when we visited there, so we can see both sides of our road don't have much plantation and grass almost dyinng. And I can't help to wonder what are the cows eating ?

From Siam Reap town to Beng Mealea, we passed by small villages where the kids run around playing without their shoes during school hours . So I think these kids are poor and can'f afford to go to school. And they got kinda excited when they saw us passing by and waves to us, and of course we waves back happily like Miss Universe.

Moat surrounding the Beng Mealea temple ! There are so many lotus flower! What a beautiful sight!

This is the entrance to the Beng Mealea. We walked around 10 mins before we actually reached the Beng Mealea temple. Beng Mealea is actually older than Angkor Wat and was originally going to be the main temple until the king changed the site.

I forgot to mention that this Beng Mealea temple is not included in our 3 days Angkor Wat pass and we need to pay USD5 for an entrance fee at a ticket booth located about half a mile from the temple itself.

Beng Mealea temple is situated in the middle of the jungle and when we saw the entrance we are shocked because it is ruined and we could not enter from there. As I mentioned earlier, this temple is left to ruin from and hence this is an original condition.

A little background about Beng Mealea on Wikipedia :

Beng Mealea was built as a Hindu temple, but there are some carvings depicting buddhist motifs. Its primary material is sandstone and it is largely unrestored, with trees and thick brush thriving amidst its towers and courtyards and many of its stones lying in great heaps.

The history of the temple is unknown and it can be dated only by its architectural style, identical to Angkor Wat, so scholars assumed it was built during the reign of king Suryavarman II in the early 12th century. Smaller in size than Angkor Wat, the king's main monument, Beng Mealea nonetheless ranks among the Khmer empire's larger temples: the gallery which forms the outer enclosure of the temple is 181 m by 152 m.It was the center of a town, surrounded by a moat 1025 m by 875 m large and 45 m wide.

TThis ia an alternative route is located on the right built for the tourist to visit the temple

I read from wikipedia that we shouldfollow the wooden bridge to visit the whole temple for safely reason.

Note : There is a temple on the left of the picture.

Remember just now I mentioned there is a temple on the left in my previous picture? I am going in!

Somehow I was adventurous that day after seeing some people coming out from another alternative road. So I told my friends, let's try this and see..

This is the entrance of the temple. And this is what we gonna do, CLIMB IN and SEE!

Oklah, we did have a security guy there who suddenly appeared and followed us around..

Ellis , Tia and me

Inside the temple,all the walls fell off and basically we need to climb on these sandstone to go around the temple. It was very adventurous, felt like Indian Jones going for treasure hunt! It is not easy and DANGEROUS!

Let's our adventure in exploring Beng Mealea begins!

One of the main reason why the walls fell off is because of the overgrown trees which was not taken care off. I was told by the guide it is because Beng Mealea located too far from the city and not easily accessible hence it became abandon.

Guide telling us history of this place and best spot for pictures.

Looking through the window,there are some craving on stone which are still in good condition.

Guide told us this is a good spot for picture and of course I climbed out to take a picture on the branch that looked like a swing!

I felt like a jungle princess here! Sitting on a swing ~

Guide waited for me, because I was busy taking pictures and he told me careful because just recently someone dropped their camera on the hole between the stones!

Do you see the trees growing up there ?

Yes the trees is living on the roofs and walls are being grasped by tree roots and branches!

So much climbing to do!

You guys must be thinking so happily posing there ah, actually it was quite dangerous because one mistake I might fall down!

This is an important carving where it shows the Churning of the Sea of Milk and Vishnu being borne by the bird god Garuda and the story of Amrita (water of immortality)

Each cravings has a story behind or represent something.

It is amazing to see how people at 12th century can actually carve such a beautiful & complex piece without much tools!

The view of the ruin temple from the top.

There are cravings on the walls too.

I was trying hard to figure what is it. At first I thought some kind of fish head or something, but later guide told us it is lotus and in fact the name of Beng Mealea comes from lotus in Khmer (Cambodian language). Beng Mealea (Khmer: ប្រាសាទបឹងមាលា, its name means "lotus pond"[1]) . Hence this explains why the moat surrounding the temple was full of lilies !

Last but not least, a picture with the super GIANT tree & root! Do you see the big root on the left! And I am really glad that I visited this temple because it is very adventurous and interesting!

p/s: At the end of the tour, we paid USD5 to the guard at our own will for his service :)

I would suggest to people who are coming Cambodia to visit this Beng Mealea Temple IF you have the time, because this temple is quite far from the city and need like more than half day including travelling time. And the good thing is it is not overcrowded and you can take your time visiting this place at your pace. It is interesting & adventurous to climb in myself to see how this temple built in the middle of the jungle and became ruin because of the overgrown trees and how the people in 12th century managed to build all this without any high tech machinery!

Hope you guys find my post useful for your coming Cambodia's trip!

Click HERE to read more about my Siam Reap,Cambodia trip!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Angkor Wat Here I come!

Short updates of my Cambodia trip. Most of my pictures are in my facebook.

Currently I am in Siam Reap, Cambodia and its my 2nd day.

Yes this is the magnificient Angkor Wat!

Yes I am here!!!

p/s: Was lucky weather was cloudy, not that hot or else I melt already!

Angkor Wat was built using sandstone during the early years of the 12th century by Suryavaram II

Sunset at Angkor Wat

Sunset at Bahkeng

Angkor Wat Night market - everything in US dollar! Well most if not all places in Siam Reap accept US dollar only.

Lots of things to see!

Hungry fish!

I bought some of the local snacks and spices !

Sunday, April 1, 2012

First Day in Siam Reap - An epic dinner at Tonle Sap

I stayed in Rithy Rine Angkor Hotel, book through

Love the swimming pool here, clean :)

p/s: I did went for a short swim :)

Breakfast in hotel. Yummy...fried rice with pork. I like their rice its so chewy!

We reach hotel around 9 something and hotel told us to have our complimentary breakfast first as our last day flight is very early and we would have to miss it. How thoughtful they are!

A tripple room cost us RM146/person

After a rest, we called and booked a sunset dinner cruise at Tonle Sap, which starts at 3.30pm. They came and picked us up in an air-condition van.

Half way pass through a very big lotus farm, we asked him to stop to let us go and see and take pictures.

At the jetty , taking boat to Tonle Sap. Here we are told the business are being monopolised by the Korean!

Walking down to the jetty is a bit scarry because there is no real stairs.

Me in the boat. We were told it's dry season so water is very low around 1 feet hence the water you see in the picture is muddy.

We tooked a similar boat like this too!

Along the way, saw a lot of floating houses at the canal heading to Tonle Sap.

Their life is quite simple. However we even saw school and church floating on Tonle Sap.

During dry season these people live on the Tonle Sap, and during wet season, they have to move to the canal.

Oh yes, they even rear pigs on Tonle Sap. Ewwww.... someone ever fall into the Lake, must have died of infection instead of drowning!!!...

First stop at Crocodile Farm & Catfish farm.

p/s: Guide said the crocodiles rear here will be exported to China market to make leather products!

Saw mother bringing their children with pythons on their body. Asking tourist to take photographs with them for some money.

This little girl keep looking at me hoping I would want to take pictures with the pythons. But no way, I don't like snakes !

This is their life, trying to survice. Children are asked to hold the pythons as if it's their toy!

It was about sunset.

Boarded on the big ship/cruise and just shortly dinner was served. I had an epic dinner! It's not a sunset dinner but a thunderstorm one! Rain is heavy and lots of thunderstorm, everyone was drenched but we still sat and have our dinner and chatted... Someone even said it's like our Last Supper. It's indeed an experience that I will never forget, well worth the USD33/person we paid for !

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