When you are in Ta Prohm, you feel like Tom Raider or Indiana Jones vibe is in front of your eyes. Actually, the movie Tom Raider was filmed here in 2001 and the truth is Ta Prohm is much more than a temple.
A mighty establishment
A corner of Ta Prohm
Ta Prohm temple which was first discovered by the French naturalist Henri Mouhot in 1860 was initially built as a monastery by Jayavarman VII belonging to his project of the major temples from the 12th to 13th century.The initial name of Ta Prohm was Rajavihara that means “monastery of the king”. The temple which was dedicated to his mother is actually vast. The construction has 600 rooms and with the surrounding area. According to an inscription on the stone, the temple requires over 70,000 people to maintain including the high priests, monks, assistants, dancers, laborers. Among the wealth belonging to the property right of the temple is a set of golden dishes that weight more than 500 kilograms consist of diamonds, pearls, precious stones, veils, silk beds and parasols. These things can be indicative of how the important and impressive monument Ta Prohm is.
An impressive layout
Despite containing many courtyards and galleries, many of the walls and structures are covered by huge – silk cotton trees which spread over, around, even through the ancient stone blocks, sometimes, occupying them, consuming them or making them collapse. Walls and doorways of the old buildings are embraced tightly by huge trees and their foliage. Tree’s branches and leaves combine together to create a roof over the structures. With the presence of flocks of parrots, Ta Prohm looks like a temple lost in the jungle. It’s worth spending time walking through many dark corridors and feel like you are getting lost in the ancient time.
Ta Prohm is one of the largest monuments in the Angkor complex. The temple which includes 260 statues of gods, 39 towers with pinnacles comprises a chains of long low buildings standing on one floor, which are hemmed by laterite walls. A series of towers connect with the passages creating the center of the temple. Nowadays, only vestiges of the wall survive.
Following the Bayon sect of art, Ta Prohm resembles the architectural style of the temples of Preah Khan and Banteay Kdei. Ta Prohm is a typical example of the monastic complex-style temples. In this complex, fix, banyan and kapok trees seem to have an enormous power, which dominates all other constructions. The giant tree roots hold the ancient stony buildings firmly, which create a dramatic and glorious scenery. Everyone must have wanted to record this miracle moment, especially the professional photographers.
Dinosaur carving in Ta Prohm
A remained mystery
In Ta Prohm, there is still a mystery that hasn’t been cleared up. It is an image of the stegosaurus that results in much curiosity among scientists for a long time. Many historians and archaeologists take part in the discussion whether Khmer civilization in the 12th and 13th century was aware of, even the first-hand experience of the existence of the dinosaur or carving these patterns around the animal was performed randomly. The argument hasn’t come to the end and the mystery hasn’t been solved yet. Why don’t you come here, observe and find your own key?
How to get there?
Belonging to The Angkor’s complex, Ta Prohm is situated in the eastern of Angkor Thorn and about 12 kilometers away from the center of Siem Reap. It just takes a few minutes to come here from Angkor Wat or Angkor Thorn by tuk-tuk. It’s also exciting to reach this temple by riding a bicycle through the trails in Angkor jungle and less-used gates. To have a smooth journey, you must ensure to read the map carefully because you must go through the considerably complicated criss-cross path. However, what you get in return is to experience a fascinating trip through the jungle. Who knows if you will catch stunning landscapes or capture great moments for yourself? It’s worthy, right?
Where is the best time to visit?
It’s sincerely advisable for you not to visit Ta Prohm in the peak of the hot or rainy season. It’s a good idea to choose a day with the favorable weather condition. Ta Prohm is a huge complex with various included parts so make sure you only visit this in case you are healthy enough and have enough time to explore all the corners and details of Ta Prohm in the fullest way. It’s best to discover Ta Prohm in the early morning when everybody tends to be at Angkor Wat. The sound of the nearby jungle is lively and the light is in the best state so it’s time for you to take marvelous pictures of the battle between trees and stone blocks here.
●This is a holy place so remember to wear long trousers and cover your shoulders to show respect to the temple. You may have to walk and climb to the temple in a long day so you are recommended to wear flat shoes and carry water by your side.
● The temple can be a dark grey background so it’s advisable for you to wear clothes with bright colors to highlight you in the picture.
● Don’t be risky to climb to hazardous position to take good pictures.
● Be careful of people who suggest giving you offering incense or fake guides who would like to explain about the temple. They can require you to pay a fee later.
Human becomes tiny when standing among Ta Prohm – the majestic mysterious fascinating temple. If you have visited once, the memories of Ta Prohm will be always alive in your mind.
“Why don’t you stand up and take the Southeast Asia tour right now? Do not forget to take Cambodia tour packages. Lao is waiting for you! Share the post if you find it useful. Have a nice trip!