|colspan="2"||Listed Historic Sites: Cambodia  | Laos  | Thailand  | Vietnam  || Total: |
Welcome to Beyond Angkor - សូមស្វាគមន៍មកកាន់ប៊ីយ៉នអង្គរ
“Angkor Wat is of such extraordinary construction that it is not possible to describe it with a pen, particularly since it is like no other building in the world. It has towers and decoration and all the refinements which the human genius can conceive of.” – António da Madalena, 1586
The iconic towers of Angkor Wat, enigmatic carved faces of the Bayon and evocative roots and vines of Ta Prohm are today world famous and these justifiably popular tourist destinations now form exotic backdrops for mantelpiece selfies on all four corners of the planet. Yet, fabulous as these majestic old jungle temples certainly are, at Beyond Angkor we reckon you could just be missing the most remarkable discovery of all.
For centuries the Angkor civilisation dominated a wide swathe of mainland Southeast Asia and, along with the far lesser-known Funan and Chenla cultures that preceded it, has bequeathed us an awe-inspiring architectural heritage of temples, monasteries and lost cities along with a vast infrastructure of canals, reservoirs, bridges and roads. Thousands of sites remain, not only in Cambodia but throughout what is today Laos, Thailand and deep into the Mekong Delta of modern-day Vietnam. Enormous temples like Banteay Chhmar and Preah Khan and entire temple cities such as Koh Ker or Sambor Prei Kuk remain still largely devoid of mass tourism. Smaller ruins remain hidden in the jungle, overgrown with tropical vegetation, rise alone out of a sea of emerald paddy, or lie tucked away in a forgotten corner of a modern temple yard.
“One of these temples—a rival to that of Solomon, and erected by some ancient Michael Angelo—might take an honourable place beside our most beautiful buildings. It is grander than anything left to us by Greece or Rome...” - Henri Mouhot, 1850
The sheer volume is extraordinary and, from the most celebrated to the remotest forgotten pile of rubble, we’re passionate about the lot! Every site is different; with a different style, setting, history and atmosphere and that is exactly what has inspired us to our mammoth task. Our modest aim, as an eclectic but like-minded group of temple fanatics, including photographers, bloggers, writers and would-be explorers, is to compile and curate a comprehensive guide to Angkorean and pre-Angkorean sites throughout Southeast Asia.
With images, maps, co-ordinates and descriptions we’re hoping to stir the adventurous spirit, reveal these hidden gems to a wider audience and breathe life into each and every one. Just remember, what is today the most forlorn, overgrown ruin was once a majestic destination.
We welcome everyone to join and contribute their knowledge and experiences in visiting these historic sites, by adding a description of the site, tips on how to get there or simply just by uploading a few photos. If you are interested in joining the community please review the Membership Guidelines.
We look forward to having you onboard as we research and explore Beyond Angkor.
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