Angkor is the largest religious monument in the world. Located 6km north of Siem Reap, Cambodia, it is a massive complex, stretching over 400 km2. Constructed between the 9th and 12th century as a Hindu temple of god Vishnu, it was later converted into a Buddhist temple.
Unaccustomed to the 35deg temperatures, our patience dwindled as we worked our way through the hordes of tourists. That’s when the creative juices started flowing!
With the help of some locals we created our own tour! Was it ever worth it!
We successfully found the ticket office and reached the west gate of Angkor Wat. Locking the bikes up we crossed the 7m deep moat that is guarded by 7 snakes with 7 heads…do you see a theme? (no, we can’t walk on water, there is a floating dock). Here we hired a tour guide ($20USD) and learned a ton from him, he also took awesome photos, but I swear it was his knowledge that I appreciated.
Recognizing, that we had reached our limit we retreated from the heat of the day with the goal of setting out to see the rest of the temples the following day.
Waking at 5am. We set out on our bikes, darkness surrounding us, cars and scooters flying by. Who doesn’t love a sun rise? OK, yes, there are many people who would rather be tucked in bed rather than watch the sun come up, but I am not one of those people. Watching the sun rise gives me such energy, such optimism, I simply love it. What a better way to witness this daily ritual than to see the sun rise over Angkor Wat? Thousands of people also had the same intention. Crowded around the pond, everyone was trying to get the most spectacular photo reflecting on the water’s surface. But, I had a secret weapon hidden up my sleeve…or, standing next to me. My partner, happens to be 6’3”. No better place to take a photo than perched on his shoulders! HA!