Amansara - East of Angkor Tour
The destination for today’s outing are the three principal temples of the Roluos Group; these stand some 13 kilometres east of Siem Reap on the road to Phnom Penh. These are Lolei, surrounded by an active wat, Preah Ko and Bakong, a five-tiered manifestation of Mount Meru and the home of the Hindu gods.
The setting is somewhat quieter than the more frequented temples within the Angkor Archaeological Park. Transport from Amansara by jeep shall be arranged for about 3.00pm.
Guests arriving into Siem Reap on a morning flight may wish to start their first temple outing a little earlier, just after lunch with the addition of the southernmost Roluos temple ruin of Trapeang Toteung Thngai. This Hindu temple set in a bamboo forest was possibly constructed under the reign of Jayavarman III during the 9th century and consists of seven brick towers each containing stone pedestals from which the cylindrical Shiva linga would project. Sadly all that remains of the brick towers are stone door frames and piles of red brick rubble. The anthropomorphic linga representations of the god Shiva have disappeared but what does remains are a large number of stone channels, called snanadroni, to the yoni (a Hindu symbol of the divine mother) which collected sanctified water.
Ask your guide to point these out and notice the quality of the stone as something to keep in mind during your following Angkor tours. Locals tell us that this temple remained in good condition until 1970, full of marvellous statues, before the ravage of war took their toll. Today, although very little of the temple remains, the setting surrounded by water is extremely picturesque.
Returning to Amansara by country road reveals glimpse of authentic rural life which we think is a timeless highlight in itself. On the road home there is one more small temple complex for true enthusiasts. Prei monti with a most unusual stone bathing pool may have been the site of the Hariharalaya royal palace. We will have you home at approximately 6.00pm.
Please note you are required to wear clothing that covers your shoulders and below the knee.