Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Neak Pean and Preah Khan

Being rudely awaken is one thing but when you realised that the road you're taking is getting smaller and smaller not anything for a van to go thru, you will sit upright and look all around you!

Yeah even the locals get lost in their own town! LOL!!

So yeah, as I was saying we were rudely awaken as our van went thru bumpy stretches and miracurously able to cross a rather huge hole with all of us in it. We took the wrong turn. The driver and guide wanted to take the short cut but missed the turning. That's how we ended up in a really narrow road full of bumps and went thru a huge hole!

Nontheless we arrived at Neak Pean safely.

Neak Pean is a unique island temple. The walk is rather long. Again the temple is surrounded by man made moat and this moat is huge! On the way in, we spotted a hut on the moat and it was made known to us that that's a police base! (bottom right pic). Dont think it's in operation now though...

The uniqueness of Neak Pean is that Neak Pean is a small monument in a cruciform arrangement of ponds with a sanctuary tower on a circular island in the middle. It represent the sacred Himalayan lake. This lake was famous for it miraculous healing properties and as the source of four great rivers issuing through the mouths of sclupted fountainheads. You will see the 4 fountainheads in the shape of an ox, a human head, a lion and a horse. Neak Pean is still in use till this day.

The flying horse

At Neak Pean only me and hubs went round the island temple. The rest of our friends is too tired and not fully awake from their siesta and thus they stayed at the entrance to snap some pics :) Actually it's a pretty hot day and both me and hubs were also tired but since we're there, might as well just go one round and look see look see.

On our way out, we spotted street peddlers and those fruit like looks like kuaci to me. Didnt stop to enquire nor buy any to try.

We continued our journey to Preah Khan. It's deep in the jungle and walking thru Preah Khan is rather cooling as the trees above us shades us from the glaring sun.

Upon entering Preah Khan, it gave me a familiar nostalgia feel. It's quite similar to Ta Prohm but on a larger scale.

Preah Khan is actually a Buddhist University and city. The entrance causeways are lined with boundary stones and nagas held by Gods and Asuras. One side is the God, the other side is the Devil. Talk about angel and devil!

As with all temples in Siem Reap, you get to see a lot of carvings detailed carvings. Tree roots are also found growing on top of the temple here, thus the similarity it has to Ta Prohm.

Further walk in, we suddenly stopped and thought we were in Rome! LOL!!

We saw this. Beautiful isnt it? It is actually a unique round columned two storied building. Used to be a dancing hall or something along that line previously.

There were a lot of ruins everywhere but Preah Khan is a beautiful place and large! I mentioned this already didnt I? :)

the doors we went thru, kinda small huh

intricate carvings on steps, beams, walls, everywhere!!

these are not bullet holes but was filled with precious stones/gems

There were a lot of child selling souveniors here and boy they are really determined coz they can follow you a long long way eventhough you politely turn them down! We had a hard time fighting them off!

We ended our tour of Preah Khan by emerging from the other side of the entrance and headed back to our hotel. This marks the end of our Siem Reap tour as the next day we are scheduled to head home.

We have "overused" our legs and they are practically squeaking out for rest! hahahaha......


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