The temple complex of Angkor Wat is situated in Siem Reap in northwest Cambodia. It is one of the most important religious monuments in the world and has become the symbol of Cambodia and the pride of its people. UNESCO designated Angkor Archaeological Park a World Heritage Site in 1992 and describes it as “a major site exemplifying cultural, religious and symbolic values, as well as containing high architectural, archaeological and artistic significance.” Curious to learn more about this remarkable place? Then, read on. We’ll tell you how long it took to build the Angkor Wat, as well as plenty of other interesting facts about its construction.
It took approximately 30 years to build Angkor Wat.
When was Angkor Wat built?
Workers started the construction of Angkor Wat in the early 12th-century. Experts say construction took place between 1113 and 1150 AD, approximately.
Where is Angkor Wat?
Angkor Wat is located in northwest Cambodia in the province of Siem Reap. You’ll find it some 5.5 kilometres (3.5 miles) north of the resort town of Siem Reap.
What is Angkor Wat?
In the Khmer language, ‘Angkor Wat’ means ‘City of Temples’. It is a temple complex and one of the most important religious monuments in the world. The complex includes the remains of the different capitals of the Khmer Empire. These date from the 9th- to the 15th-century and include 72 major temples and many minor temples.
What are the most famous structures at Angkor Wat?
The most famous is the Temple of Angkor Wat and, at Angkor Thom, the Bayon Temple with its countless sculptural decorations.
How big is Angkor Wat?
Stretching over 162.6 hectares (400 square kilometres), Angkor Archaeological Park is the largest religious site in the world.
Who built Angkor Wat?
King Jayavarman II established the Angkor state in the year 802. Some 300,000 labourers built the site with the help of 6,000 elephants.
What religion is Angkor Wat?
King Jayavarman II built it for the god Vishnu. Angkor Wat’s original name was ‘Vrah VishnuLok’, meaning ‘the sacred dwelling of Vishnu’. Vishnu “The Preserver” is the second god in the Hindu triumvirate. Therefore, originally, Angkor Wat was a Hindu site. However, over the years, it gradually incorporated Buddhist structures and by the end of the 12th-century, it had become a Buddhist temple. Today, both religions use the site and it is a sacred Hindu-Buddhist site.
What is Angkor Wat made of?
Workers constructed the city’s outer walls and the Temple of Angkor Wat out of sandstone. Workers constructed the rest of the structures inside Angkor Archaeological Park from wood and other, less durable materials.
What inspired Angkor Wat?
Mount Meru inspired Angkor Wat and the five central towers of the temple symbolise the peaks of Mount Meru. Mount Meru is a golden mountain in the centre of the universe and the home of the gods, according to Hindu, Jain and Buddhist cosmology. The three chief Hindu gods living in Mount Meru are Brahma the Creator, Vishnu the Preserver and Shiva the Destroyer. Also living in Mount Meru are the Devas, the Hindu demi-gods.
What was Angkor Wat used for?
Due to the fact that Angkor Wat faces west, not east, many people believe that the original intention may have been to use Angkor Wat as a funeral ground, much like the pyramids in Giza in Egypt. This is because the sun rises in the east (life-giving) and sets in the west (associated with death).