Ta Prohm temple

Ta Prohm temple

Ta Prohm temple is the modern name of the temple at Angkor, Siem Reap Province, Cambodia, built in the Bayon style largely in the late 12th and early 13th centuries and originally called Rajavihara.

The layout of the site is relatively simple, consisting of a number of one-story buildings (a “flat” Khmer temple rather than pyramid structure) which are enclosed by a partially-standing rectangular wall 600 x 1000m. Within this wall would have stood a substantial town, but now the temple interior is inhabited by jungle. At the east of the site there are four smaller enclosing walls which wrap around the central sanctuary.

 Most people enter the temple from the west, and after a short walk are greeted by a stone terrace in the shape of a cross which forms a walkway over a narrow moat. This leads to the fourth enclosing wall and the beginning of the real Ta Prohm experience. From this point there are courtyards, passageways and towers to explore, all in nature’s grip – partly destroyed and partly conserved by the encroaching jungle. Some of the buildings in the inner enclosures are thought to have been added in later years, such as the libraries in the first and third enclosures. The famous tomb raider tree is located in the central sanctuary and is an impressive sight, the roots seeming to both strangle and support the ruins beneath.

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