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Angkor Wat is a unique combination of the temple mountain, the standard design for the empire's state temples, the later plan of concentric galleries, and influences from Orissa and the Chola of Tamil Nadu, India. The temple is a representation of Mount Meru, the home of the gods: the central quincunx of towers symbolises the five peaks of the mountain, and the walls and moat the surrounding mountain ranges and ocean.

History Of Angkor Wat Temple

Angkor Wat Tours The initial design and construction of Angkor Wat took place in the first half of the 12th century, during the reign of Suryavarman II (ruled 1113 – c. 1150), Dedicated to Vishnu, it was built as the king's state temple and capital city.

In the 14th or 15th century the temple was converted to Theravada Buddhist use, which continues to the present day. Angkor Wat is unusual among the Angkor temples in that although it was somewhat neglected after the 16th century it was never completely abandoned, its preservation being due in part to the fact that its moat also provided some protection from encroachment by the jungle.

One of the first Western visitors to the temple was Antonio da Magdalena, a Portuguese monk who visited in 1586 and said that it "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".

Apsara Angkor Wat Temple

The temple has become a symbol of Cambodia, and is a source of great national pride. A depiction of Angkor Wat has been a part of every Cambodian national flag since the introduction of the first version circa 1863.

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