Search form

Login - Register | FOLLOW US ON

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Temple watch: The trip to Banteay Chhmar

Temple watch: The trip to Banteay Chhmar

Content image - Phnom Penh Post

The remote temple site of Banteay Chhmar is one of the greatest little-known wonders of northern Cambodia.  Its scale is huge, and it originally covered an area twice that of Angkor Wat. Little remains of its original walls, but the central sanctuary within the moat has some remaining Bayon face-style towers. There are also impressive bas reliefs on the inner sanctuary walls.

This vast site is quite overgrown, and it's a wonderful place to visit in the rainy season. It's situated 70 kilometres north of Svay, also known by the Thai name Sisophon, and it's very close to the Thai border. It is unaffected by the border tensions at Preah Vihear and is jealously guarded by the Cambodian military which has a large camp nearby.

There is work in progress to restore the eastern walls and plans to restore parts of the interior of the temple. The supervisor of the work told me that the trees will eventually be removed and new ones planted outside.

Road conditions on my last visit in late September were very bad after heavy rain. It took over two-and-a-half hours by 4WD to get there from Siem Reap, but the return journey in dry conditions took less than half that time. Conditions won't improve until Route 6 is paved.  Admission remains $5, and records show on average only one visitor signs in each day. So Banteay Chhmar is one of the best large temple sites to really get far away from the madding crowd.

0

Comments

Please, login or register to post a comment

Latest Video

Senate passes amendments allowing seat redistribution

Following last week's events, when Prime Minister Hun Sen proposed redistributing the Cambodia National Rescue Party’s National Assembly seats among minor opposition parties, the controversial amendments were passed a

Life with the indigenous communities of Mondulkiri

The Indigenous People's Lodge in the lush highlands of Mondulkiri, one of the Kingdom's most sparsely populated provinces, offers of a taste of traditional life.

Watch our video to find out more.