The Angkor Wat Complex is definitely a highlight when in Siem Reap, it includes temples like Angkor Wat, Bayon, Baphuon, TaKeo, TaPhnom, Banteay Kdei and many more .
I booked my trip just the night before and had to get up at 4am for the sunrise experience. There are different tours available and the one I picked was the short circuit. It starts at 4:30 in the morning till around 12 o’clock midday and includes the Angkor Wat, Bayon, Ta Prohm Temple and some other big Temples on the way. First I thought I could do a whole day plus sunset and it would be a waste to not use the ticket all day, but if you experience Cambodian heat and the amount of massively big temples you can go to, you understand that this is a dumb thing to think.
Because there were multiple tuk tuk’s organized from the hostel, we didn’t know if we (Sarah, Gabriel and me) would be in the same tuk tuk but we left 4.30 as planned all in the same tuk tuk.
We arrived at the ticket office at around 4.45 but the ticket office did not open until 5 AM so we had to wait in front of the counters. Luckily Sarah got a spot directly in the front, so we knew we didn’t have to wait long.
Sarah was super excited and couldn’t wait to the moment the counters opened, I was tired and still in dreamland, Gabriel was chilled and totally relaxed.
I was amazed by the amount of people that walked into the doors, standing in line for tickets, despite the fact that it was low season and not high season, it was still an massive amount of people.
You can get a day pass for $37, a three day pass for $62 or a one week pass for $72. All of them require a picture, that they take of you on the spot, to print on your pass for the anchor what area, so you better look awake and happy.
The Actual Angkor Wat entrance is still another 15 to 20 minutes tuk tuk ride from the ticket office, so we had to rush a bit to be there in time for the sunrise and to get a good spot.
We arrived in time but unfortunately we didn’t know that the outside skirts had a big water area and also there are to massive ponds inside in front of the temple, that you always see on the photos of Angkor Wat. Nevertheless it was an impressive experience.
In the time between 5 and 12 we visited 6 different temples, and let me tell you, the heat takes everything out of you. At 10am we were already fucked, means sweaty, exhausted and tired but the beauty of this place is definitely worth to keep going.
The Angkor what Temple complex is the largest religious Monument in the world and every temple is absolutely impressive.
1. Angkor Wat Temple is the largest temple in the whole complex and the countries prime attraction
2. Bayon Temple is one of the most impressive with around 200 faces of Lokesvara. This one was definitely my favorite
3. Baphuon Temple has a truly astonishing appearance, unfortunately due to its size and the fact that it was build on land filled with sand most parts have already collapsed
4. Ta Keo is a temple mountain build entirely of sandstone and by the locals called the “steep temple” because the steps are really narrow and steep what makes it harder to get up. It’s more a climb then a walk
5. Ta PhnomTemple is mostly known by the movie Tomb Raider starring Angelina Julie. The temple is truly impressive for the amount of massive trees growing in all kinds of areas around and on the temple stones
6. Banteay Kdei Temple (citadel of Chambers) or also known as Citadel of Monks cells. It’s similar to Ta Phnom but less complex and smaller.