Bayon

Built around 1190 A.D., Bayon is the only temple in the Angkor empire to be dedicated to Brahma. It was, of course, constructed during the reign of king Jayavarman VII (whose name you recognize from many many other temple posts), and was the last temple he built.

After his death, many subsequent albeit lesser monarchs have added to and modified the temple through additional outer galleries and walls.

Rediscovered in the 1900's in quite a state of ruin, it's been restored primarily by the French to a workable state. But believe me, it's still really a ruin.

The Arrival

My driver Lucky took me the east side and the proceeded to go wait on the west side of temple. A high walkway heads towards the outer grounds of the temple itself.

Outskirts, somewhat standingDancing on the ceiling


The Faces

The key feature of the temple is the faces, which people say look a lot like Jayavarman himself. I guess you can forgive a guy for a little self indulgence after naming the town next to the temples Siem Reap, which literally means, "I kicked Siam's Ass".
My, don't they look smug? Stoic
Quit looking down on me; I'm doing the best I can Very welcoming
Somehow the impact of this shot is exceptionally strong Damn, the neighbors are close
Like the Eskimos
Ok, who called this meeting? Peek! Boo, I see you
I've got my eye on you I love the vintage look and it fits this place so well

Lower areas

The primary level above the ground is dominated by the faces and central pillar. Around the lower level are galleries and hallways going to and fro. (It's actually kind of chaotic.)
The many faces of Cambodia Up to the plaza, or maybe only part of the way there
Whoop whoop wa wa whoop, Bayon style The Chinese are ubiquitous around here

Summary

The walkways and pathways are utter chaos. Many lead to what you would think was an egress but is instead a dead end. Signs will bring you around, but there are lesser traveled areas that you can stumble into also.

Very popular site, there's always a crowd. Food and drinks are available just to the west if you so need or desire them. This temple does feel draining after exploring it, but it's very well worth it.



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