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Angkor Wat Travel Guide For Cambodia

Postat pe 03 Jun 2024

1 month ago

25 minute

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    No traveler’s bucket list would be complete without a visit to the world famous Angkor Wat Cambodia temple. It’s a profound and heavy experience. Exploring Angkor feels a bit like stepping into The Jungle Book. These massive Hindu temple ruins are almost 1,000 years old, and you can tell it. Everywhere you look, the once fantastic buildings have been shaped by time and nature — with broken walls, caved in ceilings, and huge tree roots and jungle foliage slowly consuming the temples. This travel guide for Angkor Wat temple will explain how to get there, where to stay, and how to see the best temples on the Angkor Wat circuits, along with an Angkor Wat map and everything else you need to know before you go! The Angkor Wat was a group of temples built by the Khmer empire in the 12th century. Angkor Wat means ‘temple city’ and the name fits, because it’s one of the biggest religious monuments in the world, covering more than 160 hectares (400 acres). Building the temple (in what is now the country of Cambodia) took more than 30 years, and involved 300,000 workers and more than 6,000 elephants! Angkor originally started as a Hindu temple, but was later transformed into a Buddhist temple near the end of the 12th century. It was neglected and then eventually rediscovered in the 1800s by a French explorer, who described it like this: One of these temples, a rival to that of Solomon, and erected by some ancient Michelangelo, might take an honorable place beside our most beautiful buildings. It is grander than anything left to us by Greece or Rome, and presents a sad contrast to the state of barbarism in which the nation is now plunged. Angkor Wat temple was damaged over the centuries by earthquakes, plant growth, looting, and wars. There were even shootouts at Angkor during the Khmer Rouge control in the 1970s. Only the ruins remain now. Today, the Angkor Wat is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site, and millions of tourists visit every year. It looks completely epic, doesn’t it? King Louie would feel right at home! The Angkor Wat is located on the outskirts of Siem Reap, in northwest Cambodia. The closest airport is Siem Reap-Angkor International Airport (SAI), which is served by a bunch of budget friendly airlines. Among other places, there are flights from Singapore (SIN), Bangkok (DMK), or Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Siem Reap for as low as $40 USD. You can shop for flights to Siem Reap at Skyscanner. You can also travel to Angkor Wat Cambodia overland from Thailand. If you're looking for a good Siem Reap driver/guide to show you around, Klook has shared day tours starting from $12 USD. If you plan to do the sunrise tour, which I highly recommend, they also have a private Angkor Wat sunrise tour by tuk-tuk for $19 USD or a shared sunrise tour for $12 USD. We've used Klook for lots of tours and activities around the world, and they're great! Highly recommended. Book Now: Angkor Wat Shared Tour / Private Tour Here’s a rough Angkor Wat map that shows the temples around the Siem Reap area in Cambodia. Angkor Wat is located about 6.3 kilometers (4 miles) — or a quick 15 minute drive — from the town of Siem Reap, which you can see at the bottom of this map. There are lots of food and drink shacks scattered around the Angkor park, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble staying hydrated. The part that actually dehydrated me the most was the rush to get to the sunrise spot in the morning, so it’s a good idea to bring at least one bottle of water to start you out. This is a basic Angkor Wat map showing the temples in the Siem Reap area. Most tours of the Angkor Wat temple start with a visit to the ticket office, where all foreign visitors are required to buy tickets. The next stop is usually sunrise watching at the main temple, unless you opt out of doing this. After the sunrise, Angkor tours are split into two main routes — small circuit or grand circuit. Both are worthwhile, but each of them takes roughly an entire day. More on that later. You can tour the Angkor Wat by car or by tuk-tuk. A car with cold A/C is more comfortable and arguably safer on the road, but the tuk-tuk is cheaper and way more fun. Either way, you’ll still spend a lot of time walking in the Cambodian heat, which can be brutal — so bring some $1 US Dollar bills to use at the drink stands scattered around the park! As of 2024, the Angkor Wat entry fees from the main ticket office are as follows. Yes, these fees are very high by Cambodian standards, but it’s still worth it! You can pay by cash (US Dollars, Cambodian Riel, Thai Baht, Euro) or credit card (Visa, Mastercard, UnionPay, JCB, Discover and Diners Club). Take note that the 1 day Cambodia temple ticket is only valid for the day of purchase. You can’t buy it and then use it a few days later. However, the 3 day ticket is valid for 10 days from the date of purchase. You can choose any of those 3 days to visit the temples, so that means you can take a rest day between visits if you need it. The 7 day ticket is valid for a month from the date of purchase. You can pick any 7 days to visit the temples during that calendar month. The Angkor Wat is a temple and religious monument for Cambodia, so there’s a modest dress code for both men and women. What you wear should cover your knees and shoulders, otherwise you may be denied entry. They’re serious about this. Shorts are okay as long as they go below the knees. Most tours at the Angkor Wat start by watching the sunrise at the temples. I would highly recommend doing this, and I wrote a mini-guide for it here that explains the best photo spots and how to get to them. You’ll have to fight your way through crowds of tourists to get a front seat, but this is one sunrise you don’t want to miss! It’s one of the most popular and beautiful sunrise spots in the world. The sun comes up directly behind the main Cambodia temple, and it’s fantastic. Read More: Angkor Sunrise Tips All tours of the Angkor Wat are divided into two routes, or circuits, as they’re called — small circuit or grand circuit. Despite what the names would lead you to believe, both routes take roughly the same amount of time and visit roughly the same number of temples. You can spend a full day seeing either route. It’s not really possible to do both in the same day. Which circuit is better? That’s a tough question. It’s really just a matter of personal preference and what you’re wanting to see. For example, the ‘Tomb Raider temple’ (Ta Prohm) is on the small circuit. The grand circuit has some very nice things too. If I had to pick one, I’d probably give a slight edge to the small circuit, despite the name. In the list below, you can see some of the highlights of both Angkor Wat circuits, and decide for yourself which one looks most interesting. If you have enough time, see both! Both the small circuit and grand circuit begin at the main temple of Angkor Wat. The sunrise here is epic, and the temple itself is huge too. It’s worth spending at least an hour exploring here. This is one of my favorite temples in Angkor. It’s a small, barely known pyramid temple near Angkor Thom. You might have to ask your driver to stop here, because most tours don’t include it in the normal itinerary. This Cambodia temple is a hidden gem! This is a gate on the south side of the Angkor Thom temple complex. It’s in poor shape, but you can still drive or walk through it, so it makes for some cool photo ops. Bayon is one of the most important temples in Angkor Thom, and it has some of the best wall carvings in the area. This is also where you can see the famous stone faces that you’ve probably seen in lots of photos. This is one of the less known temples in Angkor Thom, and most tour groups don’t seem to go here. The carvings and doorways are good to explore. Ta Prohm is the famous ‘Tomb Raider temple’ used in the 2001 Angelina Jolie movie, where she’s exploring the temple ruins and the floor suddenly collapses under her feet. This is one of the most photogenic temples in Cambodia thanks to an incredible tree that’s growing on top of the ruins. It’s easy to see why it was used in the movie, because the atmosphere is just amazing. There are ancient Buddhist carvings and crumbling walls, decayed by time and swallowed up by giant jungle roots. Ta Prohm At one time more than 10,000 Khmer people lived at Ta Prohm, but it was abandoned in the 15th century after the fall of the Khmer empire, and became deserted for hundreds of years. Today, Ta Prohm is easily one of the most visited temples in the Angkor complex. It draws in thousands of tourists per day, so you might have to fight the crowds to get those bucket list photos you’re wanting! Crumbling walls of Ta Prohm More incredible trees and temples in Angkor Wat Cambodia! The tree roots at Banteay Kdei are absolutely massive, and they’re taking control of the buildings. Both the small circuit and grand circuit begin at the main temple of Angkor Wat. The sunrise here is epic, and the temple itself is huge too. It’s worth spending at least an hour exploring here. Most of the main temple is ruined, but it’s cool to see how nature is reclaiming what’s left of it. This is one of my fave stops on the grand circuit. This is an island temple in the middle of a little pond. It looks best if you see it right after the rainy season. Late in the dry season there’s not much water left (pictured). This is a smaller temple, but the best part is the stone doorway being consumed and held in place by a strangler tree. This temple is not in great shape compared to some of the others in Cambodia, but the highlight here would have to be the elephant statues in each corner of the temple. This is a big temple near the end of the Angkor Wat Cambodia grand circuit. Funerals were done here, so that may be why the temple looks so creepy. The buildings at the top of the pyramid are in the best shape, so be sure to take a look up there. This is a group of remote temples about 2.5 hours drive from Siem Reap. You can visit it on a day trip. The main building is a 7-tier pyramid in the forest, and a stairway leads to the top where you can get a nice view of the whole area. This is actually part of the Koh Ker area, but Pram temple is so awesome I thought it deserved its own separate mention. These are ancient temples being swallowed up by huge strangler trees and you must see them if you have time to take a day trip out of Siem Reap. This may be my favorite Cambodia temple after the Angkor Wat itself. This temple is a 1 hour drive from Siem Reap, and it can be combined with a grand/small circuit tour if you pay the driver a bit extra. The red sandstone colors are nice, and it’s known for having some of the best stone carvings out of all the Khmer temples. This temple is about 1.5 hours drive from Siem Reap, and it can be combined with Koh Ker as a full day trip. The temple is mostly ruined, but that’s part of what makes it cool! This group of temples is only a 30 minute drive from Siem Reap, making it easy to combine with something else as a full day trip. The Roluos temples date back to the 9th century, making them some of the oldest Khmer temples in Cambodia. The town of Siem Reap is just a 5 minute drive from the Angkor Wat Cambodia temples, and that’s where you’ll want to book a hotel during your stay. There are lots of great restaurants, hotels, and massage places in Siem Reap for very affordable prices. We stayed at the 4-star La Residence Blanc D'Angkor in Siem Reap. It was $18 USD per night for a clean double room with cold A/C, work desk, refrigerator, wardrobe, and more. There's also an on-site restaurant and pool. The staff there is amazingly friendly, and I love the epic wall art showing scenes from the Angkor Wat. It sets the mood for exploring some Cambodian temple ruins. Prices may fluctuate from time to time, so just keep an eye out for a good deal. We stayed at this 4-star hotel in Siem Reap for $18 USD This was the pool at our hotel Here’s a sample Angkor Wat itinerary you can follow if you spend up to 4 days in Siem Reap, Cambodia: For more detailed suggestions, you can check out my Angkor Wat itinerary guide in the link below. Read More: Angkor Wat Itinerary Yes, I think Cambodia is safe, and I’ve visited the country many times. It is one of the world’s poorest countries, but violent crime and terrorism are not major issues here in recent years. One problem in Cambodia is drive-by bag or phone snatchings, especially in Phnom Penh, but occasionally in Siem Reap too. The best way to prevent this is to keep your bag slung across your chest so it’s not easy to grab, and put your phone away when you’re riding around in traffic in a tuk-tuk. Nowhere in the world is perfectly safe, but Cambodia receives millions of tourists every year, and most of them visit Siem Reap and the Angkor Wat. If you’re looking to avoid the biggest seasonal crowds at Angkor, watch out for the Chinese New Year, which falls sometime in January or February every year. The climate of Cambodia is tropical, so the weather is hot and humid year round. The rainy season runs from May to November (but especially the months of September and October), and the sunny season runs from December to April. It’s still possible to visit Angkor Wat in the rainy season, but give yourself some extra days as a buffer in case of bad weather. We’ve visited Cambodia several times in the month of May, and the weather was always bright and sunny without a drop of rain. Try to get an early start in the morning to avoid the heat and crowds. Spend at least one morning seeing the famous Angkor Wat sunrise at the temples. Happy travels!

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    Exploring Monuments: A Journey Through The History

    # Introduction Traveling is an experience that enriches us internally - introducing us to new cultures, traditions, and historical facts. When it comes to history, nothing portrays it better than monuments - the living testimonies of our past. In this blog, we will embark on an exciting journey of exploring some of the world's most magnificent and famous monuments. # The Magnificence of the Taj Mahal A symbol of love and an architectural marvel, the Taj Mahal in India never fails to captivate its onlookers. Commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan, the Taj Mahal is the epitome of Mughal architecture combined with Indian, Iranian, and Islamic design elements. The pristine white marble structure leaves a lasting impression on anyone who visits. # The Colosseum's Grandeur Located in the heart of Rome, the Colosseum or the Flavian Amphitheater is one of the best examples of Roman architecture and engineering. Built between AD 70-80, the Colosseum was used for gladiatorial contests, public spectacles, dramas, and historical re-enactments. # Enigmatic Easter Island The Remote Easter Island, a Chilean territory, is famous worldwide for its enigmatic stone statues called Moai. There remains a sense of mystery as to how the Rapa Nui people managed to carve and transport these gigantic sculptures centuries ago with limited technology. # American Symbol - The Statue of Liberty The Statute of Liberty, standing tall on Liberty Island in New York, is a monument representing freedom. A gift from France to the United States, the primary symbol of democracy became a welcoming sight for immigrants coming to America. # Closing Note: Besides being splendid architectural structures, monuments serve as links to our yesteryears, allowing us to gaze into the mirror of history. They are the storytellers of the old world and the legacy of our ancestors. Hence, embarking on the journey to explore these treasures is something, every traveler and history buff ought to undertake. .

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    Angkor Wat Itinerary: 4 Days In Siem Reap Cambodia

    As a gateway to the famous Angkor Wat temples, Siem Reap is the cornerstone of Cambodia’s tourism and it’s definitely one of the best travel destinations to put on your Cambodia itinerary. You could easily spend a week or two exploring everything in the Siem Reap area, but the top highlights can be seen with 3 or 4 days in Cambodia if you’re limited on time. This Angkor Wat itinerary will guide you through some of the very best Angkor temples to see, along with a few of the most interesting sights in Siem Reap town itself. Hopefully this gives you some ideas for what to do in Cambodia for 4 days! This entire Angkor Wat itinerary takes place in and near the small town of Siem Reap, Cambodia. Fly to Siem Reap-Angkor International Airport (SAI), which is serviced by a bunch of budget friendly airlines with good ratings. Among other places, there are flights from Singapore (SIN), Bangkok (DMK), or Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Siem Reap for as low as $40 USD. You can shop for flights to Siem Reap at Skyscanner. When you arrive in Siem Reap, take an airport transfer to your hotel. You can book this in advance on Klook for $11 by private car, or $5 by tuk tuk. Check in to your hotel, and get rested up to explore some ancient temples for 4 days in Cambodia! Wake up early and start your Cambodia itinerary with the incredible Angkor Wat sunrise on the pond. Afterwards, explore the main temple area, which is huge. This is one of my favorite temples in Angkor. It’s a small, barely known pyramid temple near Angkor Thom. You might have to ask your driver to stop here, because most tours don’t include it in the normal itinerary. It’s a hidden gem! This is a gate on the south side of the Angkor Thom temple complex, right next to Baksei Chamkrong. It’s in poor shape, but you can still drive or walk through it, so it makes for some cool photo ops. Bayon is one of the most important temples in Angkor Thom, and it has some of the best wall carvings in the area. This is also where you can see the famous stone faces that you’ve probably seen in lots of Cambodia photos. This is one of the less known temples in Angkor Thom, and most tour groups don’t seem to go here. The carvings and doorways are good to explore. Ta Prohm is the famous ‘Tomb Raider temple’ used in the 2001 Angelina Jolie movie. There’s an incredible tree here that is growing on top of one of the temples. It’s a must see. More incredible trees and temples! The tree roots at Banteay Kdei are absolutely massive, and they’re taking control of the buildings. Angkor Wat Sunrise Baksei Chamkrong Temple Angkor Thom Gate Bayon Temple Thommanon Temple Ta Prohm Temple Banteay Kdei Temple Tour the Angkor Wat again (grand circuit this time), starting with Preah Khan. Most of the main temple is ruined, but it’s cool to see how nature is reclaiming what’s left of it. This is an island temple in the middle of a little pond. It looks better right after the rainy season. Late in the dry season there’s not much water left. This is a smaller temple, but the best part is the stone doorway being consumed and held in place by a strangler tree. This temple is not in great shape, but the highlight here would have to be the elephant statues in each corner of the temple. This is a big temple near the end of the grand circuit. Funerals were done here, so that may be why the temple looks so creepy. The buildings at the top of the pyramid are in the best shape, so be sure to take a look up there. This temple is a 1 hour drive from Siem Reap, but it can be combined with a grand/small circuit tour if you pay your driver a bit extra. The red sandstone colors are nice, and it’s known for having some of the best stone carvings out of all the Khmer temples. Preah Khan Neak Pean Ta Som East Mebon Pre Rup Bantei Srei Temple Hire a driver for the day and head over to Koh Ker, a group of remote temples about 2.5 hours drive from Siem Reap. The main building is a 7-tier pyramid in the forest, and a stairway leads to the top where you can get a nice view of the whole area. This is an incredible spot that’s part of the Koh Ker area. These are ancient temples being swallowed up by huge strangler trees and you must see them while you’re nearby. This is another remote temple you can visit on the way back to Siem Reap. The temple is mostly ruined, but that’s part of what makes it cool! Last but not least, you’ll find the Roluos temples just 30 minutes east of Siem Reap. These date back to the 9th century, making them some of the oldest Khmer temples in Cambodia (you may have to pay your driver a little extra to pack so many sights into a 4 day Cambodia itinerary like this, but it’s worth it). Koh Ker Temple Prasat Pram Temple Beng Mealea Roluos Temples Start out Day 4 by exploring the many interesting restaurants and shops in Siem Reap town. If you really want a unique experience, head over to the Bugs Cafe. This place serves fried tarantulas, scorpions, and other bugs to eat! It was started by a French expat and a Khmer chef, and it’s a fusion of local culture as well as the influx of tourism. Make a culture & history stop at Wat Thmey, a Cambodian temple that’s also notable for being used as a killing field during the Khmer Rouge communist rule in Cambodia during the 1970s. There is a stupa memorial filled with skulls and bones from the victims of the genocide. The riverside markets in Siem Reap are great for souvenir shopping, street food, and street photography. The stalls have all kinds of items for sale, from paintings and clothing, to fridge magnets and postcards. The Bugs Cafe Wat Thmey Temple Siem Reap Market I hope this Angkor Wat itinerary was helpful for planning your own Cambodia trip. These are just a few ideas of what to do in Cambodia for 4 days. You could easily spend longer in Siem Reap exploring all of the nearby temples, and enjoying the restaurants and markets. Don’t forget to check out my full Angkor Wat Travel Guide with free tips, maps, photos, and more! If you're looking for a good Siem Reap driver/guide to show you around, Klook has shared day tours starting from $12 USD. If you plan to do the sunrise tour, which I highly recommend, they also have a private Angkor Wat sunrise tour by tuk-tuk for $19 USD or a shared sunrise tour for $12 USD. We've used Klook for lots of tours and activities around the world, and they're great! Highly recommended. Book Now: Angkor Wat Shared Tour / Private Tour We stayed at the 4-star La Residence Blanc D'Angkor in Siem Reap. It was $18 USD per night for a clean double room with cold A/C, work desk, refrigerator, wardrobe, and more. There's also an on-site restaurant and pool. The staff there is amazingly friendly, and I love the epic wall art showing scenes from the Angkor Wat. It sets the mood for exploring some Cambodian temple ruins. Prices may fluctuate from time to time, so just keep an eye out for a good deal. We stayed at this 4-star hotel in Siem Reap for $18 USD This was the pool at our hotel .

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    How To Visit Prambanan Temple In Java Indonesia

    The Candi Prambanan temple, located in Yogyakarta city, is Indonesia’s very own 9th century twin to the Angkor Wat temple in Cambodia. If you’ve been to Angkor before, this is a little bit like a continuation of that adventure. Like the Angkor Wat, the temple of Prambanan is impressive in scale and completely enchanting in its features. You’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time! Together with the Borobudur temple, which is also in Java, Prambanan is one of the most famous temples of Indonesia. This travel guide will explain what to expect when visiting Prambanan, how you can do it on your own (with or without a tour), and which temples in the complex are best to see! Prambanan was a group of temples (‘candi’) built by the Hindu dynasties of Java in the 8th and 9th centuries. It was one of the biggest Hindu temple complexes in the world, with more than 500 individual temples and shrines, and sported a group of pointy towers that rose as high as 50 meters (165 feet). The temple was severely damaged over the centuries by earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and it was eventually abandoned to the jungle and became surrounded by legends and myths. The ruins were rediscovered in the 1800s by a British explorer, but proper restoration work didn’t start until the 1930s under the Dutch. Prambanan in recent years has had quite a bit more restoration work than Angkor, which admittedly makes it feel a bit less authentic, but you can still expect to see some of the same amazing architecture styles, with towering stone buildings and bizarre Hindu carvings. Today, Candi Prambanan is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site, and many tourists visit every year. Together with Borobudur, it’s one of the highlights of a trip to central Java. One of the most popular ways to visit Prambanan is with a side trip to Borobudur, another 9th century temple that is a bit further outside Yogya and is famous as the largest Buddhist temple in the world. There are also lots of other small temples in the Prambanan area, so if you’re wanting to visit most (or all) of them, then the most convenient way to do this would be to hire a driver or book a tour for the full day and combine everything you’re wanting to see. Klook has a full day join-in tour that combines Prambanan and Borobudur temples for 900k IDR ($65 USD) with free hotel pickup, and they also have a sunrise tour at the same temples that costs a bit more. If you’d rather arrange your Prambanan trip yourself, I’ll explain how to do that next! Borobudur is a popular site to combine with Prambanan. Candi Prambanan is located right on the outskirts of Yogyakarta city, in central Java, Indonesia. The closest airport is Yogyakarta International Airport (YIA), which is served by a bunch of budget friendly airlines with good ratings. AirAsia often has flights from Singapore (SIN) or Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Yogya for 1 million Rupiah ($70 USD), or flights from Bali (DPS) for only 600k Rupiah ($40). You can shop for flights to Yogyakarta at Skyscanner. You can also reach Yogya easily by train, bus, or car from Semarang, Surabaya, Malang, and other cities in Java. Once you arrive in Yogya, you can get to Prambanan easily with a taxi or tour. You can even use the Grab or GoJek ride-hailing apps to order a driver with a car or motorbike to take you directly to Prambanan. Keep in mind the Borubudur temple is located well away from Prambanan and the Yogyakarta town center, so if you plan to visit both temples, then the best option is to book a tour or hire a driver for the full day. The Prambanan Archaeological Park is small enough to be easily walkable on foot, including the main sights like Sewu Temple. If you plan to go to separate temples in Jogja like the Plaosan Temple, you can do that with the GoJek ride-hailing app. Drivers are easy to find in the Yogya area, and fares are super cheap. With GoJek (aka GoCar), a one way transfer from Prambanan to Plaosan temple is only about 20k Rupiah, or you can easily walk it if you’re regularly active. Here’s a basic map of all the temples, small and large, in the Prambanan plain. Prambanan is located about 16 kilometers (10 miles) — or a quick 30 minute drive — from the center of Yogyakarta city. Not all of these temples are must-see (a list of my favorites is lower down this page), but it is theoretically possible to see all of them in a day if you’d like. Map of temples in the Prambanan plain. (CC BY-SA 4.0, courtesy of Wikipedia / Gunawan Kartapranata) *Students get a discount, but you have to bring a physical student ID to take advantage of this. Yes, all of these fees are very high by Indonesian standards (and it’s more annoying when you consider the price for foreigners is 9 times the local price), but I think it’s still worth it to see these amazing temples. You can pay by cash (Indonesian Rupiah) or credit card. The ticket includes a free soft drink — cold mineral water, which you’ll need! Sunrise at Prambanan is not a major attraction like at Angkor Wat. There is the potential for some great sunrise/sunset photography at Prambanan, but unfortunately the park opens after sunrise and closes before sunset. I’m not sure whose decision this was, but I hope it changes. Currently the best spot for sunrise pics is at Plaosan temple, which is just outside of the Prambanan park and therefore you can photograph it at any time of the day. The Prambanan plain actually has dozens of Hindu temples and ruins. The below is not a complete list of every temple, but I think these are the most impressive ones and they seem to be in the best condition. These are the highlights that stood out to me on multiple visits to this area! This is the main temple and the center of the Prambanan Archaeological Park. The scale is awesome, and you can go inside the massive towers. There are lots of great carvings in the stone walls outside too. This is a smaller temple you can see while walking from Prambanan to Candi Sewu. It’s not the most remarkable on the list, but it’s in great condition and you can go inside. This is my 2nd favorite temple at Prambanan. It’s actually a Buddhist temple, and it’s older than the other buildings at Prambanan. The rooftops are bell shaped (ala Borobudur), and two big guardian statues stand watch at the entrance with clubs. This is the only temple on the list that is outside of the Prambanan Archaeological Park. From the Prambanan entrance, you can reach Plaosan with a 30 minute walk (or a 5 minute drive with GoJek). This temple is the best sunrise spot! Prambanan is located right by the city of Yogyakarta, and that’s where you’ll want to book a hotel during your stay. There are lots of great restaurants, hotels, and malls in Yogya with very affordable prices. We stayed at stepHouse Homestay in Yogyakarta. It was $17 USD per night for a clean twin room with A/C, private bathroom, and fast WiFi. One of the biggest positives of this homestay is the location. It was walking distance to the Malioboro mall and train station, which is perfect if you're planning to take the train to Malang to visit Tumpak Sewu and Mount Bromo like we were! Prices may fluctuate from time to time, so just keep an eye out for a good deal. Our Yogyakarta hotel Our Yogyakarta hotel I’d say definitely yes Java is safe, and I’ve visited the island many times over the years. Indonesia has one of the lowest murder rates in the world. We walked around Yogyakarta at all hours of the day and night, and always felt safe. Nowhere in the world is perfectly safe, but Indonesia gets millions of tourists every year, and many of them visit Java. There’s no ‘bad’ time to visit Prambanan or the city of Yogya. The climate of Indonesia is tropical, so the weather is hot and humid year round. The rainy season runs from November to April, and the sunny/dry season runs from April to November. It’s still possible to visit Indonesia in the rainy season, but you may want to give yourself some extra days as a buffer in case of bad weather. Happy travels! .

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    How To Visit The Baalbek Temple Ruins In Lebanon

    One of the highlights of my visit to the Middle East would have to be Baalbek Lebanon, with its Roman ruins and giant megalithic stones. This temple dates back to ancient times, and it can be visited pretty easily on a day trip from the Beirut area. These amazing ruins are still in great condition considering their age, so they’re a must see if you happen to be passing through Lebanon or the Middle East. First of all, if this is your first time in Lebanon, I would highly recommend visiting Baalbek with a tour package and guide. GetYourGuide has prearranged day tours to Baalbek from Beirut, including free hotel pickup and drop-off, and a tour guide for the archaeological sites. This is easier and safer than trying to get there by yourself, and you’ll also have a better experience with a guide explaining everything for you. We’ve used GetYourGuide for lots of tours and activities around the world, and they’re great. Highly recommended! Book Now: Baalbek Private Tour The Baalbek valley (also spelled ‘Baalbeck’) has been settled since at least 9,000 BC, and in Bible times it was the site of gory human sacrifices to Baal, the Canaanite god of fertility. Some of the remnants of this ancient civilization can still be seen here. Baalbek was renamed ‘Heliopolis’ after being conquered by the Greeks, and then it was later used by the Romans as a foundation for a new temple complex that took 250 years to build. The most notable Roman buildings in the complex were the temples of Bacchus, Jupiter, and Venus. Together, these made up one of the largest temples of the entire Roman Empire. Over the years, the temple of Baalbek (aka Heliopolis) was damaged pretty extensively by earthquakes, and occasionally plundered for stone. At different times in history, it’s been occupied by the Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Ottomans, and even the Mongols. Interestingly, some of the Corinthian columns were even disassembled by the Byzantine Empire and used in the 537 AD construction of the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey, which is known today as one of the most famous wonders of the ancient world. Today, Baalbek is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it’s generally regarded as one of the best archaeological attractions to see in Lebanon. Mark Twain, in his 19th century travel memoirs, said that “such grandeur of design, and such grace of execution, as one sees in the temples of Baalbeck, have not been equaled or even approached in any work of men’s hands that has been built within twenty centuries past.” That may be a bit of a stretch, I don’t know, but Baalbek was definitely the highlight of my trip to Lebanon, and you shouldn’t miss it if you happen to be in the area! There are a lot of neat things to see in the Baalbek temple complex. We spent at least a couple hours exploring everything (until a storm started to roll in), but if you’re a big fan of history and architecture then I’m sure you could stay even longer! In my opinion, the best thing to see at Baalbek today is the Temple of Bacchus. This Roman temple is incredibly well preserved and still looks grand today, with its huge 20 meter (65 foot) columns still standing tall, and many of its sculptures and reliefs still intact. If you only have a limited amount of time at Baalbek, definitely head over here first! The remaining six columns of the Temple of Jupiter can still be seen at Baalbek too, but sadly they seem to be covered with scaffolding all the time (for restoration work), so I wasn’t able to take any pictures during my 2018 visit. Back in its day, the Temple of Jupiter probably would have been the most impressive part of the whole Baalbek complex, but time and the elements just haven’t been kind to it over the centuries. There are still some partial columns on the eastern side of the complex that are absolutely massive, though, and it’s fun to stand next to these or sit on the big stone blocks for a sense of scale. Cool side note: one of the megalith stone blocks found at Baalbek is believed to be the largest stone ever quarried in human history, weighing 1,650 tons — over 3 million pounds (that’s not a typo!). It’s a bit of a mystery how the temple was engineered with such massive stones, and how they could ever be manipulated into place. There are even fringe theories that aliens may have been involved! One of my favorite things at Baalbek, though, was the Roman inscriptions scattered around the temple complex. Some of these are still in pretty good condition, and together with the huge stone columns they give the ruins an atmosphere that is pretty awe inspiring. Baalbek is located about 90 kilometers (55 miles) northeast of the Beirut area. You can do this drive in a rental car, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you’re familiar with driving in the Middle East. Traffic in Arab countries can be a bit dangerous and chaotic, so you’ll be much better off going with a driver who’s familiar with how the traffic works here. The best idea is to book a prearranged day tour to Baalbek with an established company (more on that below). Thanks for looking! I hope you enjoyed this travel guide for Baalbek Lebanon (also spelled ‘Baalbeck’). The temple, ruins, and giant stones here are just fascinating. .

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    18:28

    Discovering the Art of Interior Architecture: From Past to Contemporary

    # Introduction Interior architecture has always been a significant aspect of architectural design, bridging the gap between aesthetic appeal and functional usability. Over the years, it has evolved immensely, reflecting shifts in technology, societal values, and artistic preferences. In this blog post, we delve into the intricacies of interior architecture, tracing its development from historical epochs to its contemporary manifestations. # Historical Overview of Interior Architecture Historically, interior architecture was viewed merely as an extension of architecture. However, with time, it has evolved into a unique and differentiated field. Traditionally, interiors were characterized by elaborate designs with heavy furniture, intricate carvings, rich textiles, and ornate architectural elements such as arches, columns, and domes. During the Renaissance and Baroque eras, for example, interiors were known for their grandeur and opulence, mirroring the societal structures and philosophical ideologies of the time. # Modern Revolution in Interior Architecture Fast forward to the 20th century, the modernist movement dramatically altered the landscape of interior architecture, reducing the emphasis on ornamentation and instead focusing on form, functionality, and minimalism. Architects like Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe and Walter Gropius transformed the way we perceive and engage with interior spaces, emphasizing clean lines, expansive open layouts, and pure forms. # Role of Technology in Shaping Interior Architecture Technology has played a crucial role in shaping interior architecture in recent years. Advancements in material science have allowed for the creation and use of novel materials such as responsive glass, smart textile, and sustainable materials. These innovations offer exciting possibilities for interior architects, allowing them to manipulate space and form in ways that would have been unthinkable in the past. Additionally, digital systems and software, such as BIM (Building Information Modeling) and 3D visualization tools, have revolutionized the design process itself, enabling architects to render highly-accurate and immersive models of spaces. # Interior Architecture Today: Trends and Themes Today's interior architecture encapsulates a myriad of design philosophies and trends. Some prominent themes include mixed-use spaces, biophilic design, and the revival of craft and tradition. There is an increasing emphasis on sustainability and eco-friendly practices, reflecting a growing awareness and concern for our environment. Mixed-use spaces blend different functional areas — such as working, living, and leisure — within a single cohesive setting, reflecting our society's evolving lifestyle. Biophilic design, on the other hand, harnesses the affinity humans have for nature, incorporating natural elements such as plants, natural light, and organic materials into the built environment. # Conclusion Reflecting on the journey of interior architecture, from its early roots to the modern day, it's clear to see how this discipline has evolved over time, adapting to shifts in societal values, technological innovations, and architectural thought. As we move forward into the future, the field of interior architecture will continue to innovate, shaping the way we live and interact with our environments.
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    17:42

    Unforgettable Beach Destinations: A Traveler's Guide

    # Introduction. Our planet is home to some truly magnificent stretches of sand and sea that are worth flying for. If you are a beachgoer interested in experiencing the greatest shores the world has to offer, this blog post is for you. Let's journey through some unforgettable beach destinations worldwide. # Chapter 1. The Unspoiled Charm of Tulum, Mexico. Tulum is not only known for its significant archaeological sites but also its sparkling turquoise waters and vibrantly hued sunsets. The beach banks on its natural beauty to charm its visitors, and it does so persistently. With its soft, white sand, Tulum's beaches offer a luxurious natural environment that stands out in today's heavily commercialized world. # Chapter 2. The Iconic Bora Bora, French Polynesia. Bora Bora hosts some of the world's most renowned beaches, with its quintessential pristine white sands and crystal-clear cerulean waters. This paradisiacal destination's allure is not only limited to its breathtaking beaches but also its lush tropical vegetation and the strikingly beautiful Mount Otemanu. # Chapter 3. The Understated Beauty of Railay Beach, Thailand. While Thailand boasts of many famous beaches, few can match the unique beauty of Railay Beach. Accessed only by boat, Railay offers a tranquil escape and jaw-droppingly beautiful scenery. The remarkable combination of white sands, emerald waters, and dramatic limestone cliffs is sure to leave you spellbound. # Chapter 4. The Vibrant Life of Bondi Beach, Australia. If a beach with a vibrant lifestyle is what you're seeking, then Bondi Beach is the perfect destination. This iconic Australian destination is not just a strip of sand; it defines Aussie beach culture. You can surf, suntan, dine in style, or mingle with locals at the Bondi Markets – every experience is a delight. # Chapter 5. The Elegance of Grace Bay, Turks and Caicos. Grace Bay in Turks and Caicos comprises the most beautiful twelve kilometers of beach you will ever encounter. The sands are light and soft, and the waters sparkle in countless shades of blue. This beach gets its finishing touch from a coral reef system that teems with aquatic life, offering fantastic snorkeling adventures. # Conclusion. Overall, whether you're an adventure-seeker, a nature lover or just need a spot under the sun to unwind with a book, these beach destinations offer more than just a beautiful view. They offer a chance to be immersed in the local lifestyle, to uncover stunning natural wonders, and to create unforgettable memories.
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    17:20

    Exploring the Majestic Niagara Falls: A Gateway to Natural Wonder

    # Introduction. Nestled between the borders of the United States and Canada, Niagara Falls stands as one of the most awe-inspiring natural wonders on Earth. With its thundering cascades and mesmerizing mist, it attracts millions of visitors each year. This blog post will take you through the splendor and spectacle of Niagara Falls, providing insights into what makes this destination a must-visit location for travelers. # A Historical Perspective. Niagara Falls has a rich history that dates back thousands of years. Indigenous peoples revered the falls for their natural beauty and spiritual significance. European explorers first documented the falls in the 17th century, with French explorer Samuel de Champlain providing one of the earliest accounts. Over the centuries, Niagara Falls has transformed from a natural wonder into a bustling tourist destination, complete with attractions, hotels, and entertainment options that cater to millions of visitors each year. # The Three Waterfalls. Niagara Falls is not just one, but three separate waterfalls: the American Falls, the Bridal Veil Falls, and the Horseshoe Falls. The American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls are located on the U.S. side, while the Horseshoe Falls straddle the border between both countries. Each of these falls offers a unique perspective and experience. The Horseshoe Falls, with its distinctive curved shape, is the largest and most powerful, offering a breathtaking view from various points in both Canada and the United States. # Attractions and Activities. Visitors to Niagara Falls have no shortage of activities to enjoy. On the Canadian side, journey behind the falls to witness the thunderous waters from a series of tunnels and observation decks. Take a boat ride on the Maid of the Mist to get up close and personal with the cascading torrents, feeling the refreshing spray on your face. For the adventurous, the Whirlpool Aero Car offers stunning views of the churning rapids below. Additionally, the Skylon Tower provides a panoramic view of the falls and the surrounding area, perfect for capturing unforgettable moments. # Nature and Wildlife. Beyond the falls themselves, the Niagara region is rich in natural beauty and biodiversity. The Niagara Gorge, carved by the relentless flow of the river, is a haven for hikers and nature enthusiasts. The Niagara Parks Butterfly Conservatory, located on the Canadian side, offers a vibrant experience with thousands of fluttering butterflies. Birdwatchers can also enjoy spotting various species, such as peregrine falcons and bald eagles, that make their home in the vicinity of the falls. # A Culinary Experience. No trip to Niagara Falls is complete without indulging in its culinary delights. The region boasts a burgeoning food and wine scene, with numerous farm-to-table restaurants and vineyards in nearby Niagara-on-the-Lake. Savor local specialties such as icewine, a unique dessert wine produced from grapes frozen on the vine. The diverse array of dining options ensures that every taste preference is catered to, making for a truly satisfying gastronomic journey. # Conclusion. Niagara Falls is not just a destination; it is an experience that encapsulates the beauty and power of nature. From its rich history and magnificent waterfalls to the plethora of activities and natural splendor in the surrounding area, Niagara Falls promises an unforgettable adventure. Whether you are seeking thrills, relaxation, or simply a chance to marvel at one of the world's most famous natural landmarks, Niagara Falls offers something for everyone. Be sure to add this iconic destination to your travel bucket list and let the magic of Niagara captivate your senses.
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    17:42

    Unforgettable Beach Destinations: A Traveler's Guide

    # Introduction. Our planet is home to some truly magnificent stretches of sand and sea that are worth flying for. If you are a beachgoer interested in experiencing the greatest shores the world has to offer, this blog post is for you. Let's journey through some unforgettable beach destinations worldwide. # Chapter 1. The Unspoiled Charm of Tulum, Mexico. Tulum is not only known for its significant archaeological sites but also its sparkling turquoise waters and vibrantly hued sunsets. The beach banks on its natural beauty to charm its visitors, and it does so persistently. With its soft, white sand, Tulum's beaches offer a luxurious natural environment that stands out in today's heavily commercialized world. # Chapter 2. The Iconic Bora Bora, French Polynesia. Bora Bora hosts some of the world's most renowned beaches, with its quintessential pristine white sands and crystal-clear cerulean waters. This paradisiacal destination's allure is not only limited to its breathtaking beaches but also its lush tropical vegetation and the strikingly beautiful Mount Otemanu. # Chapter 3. The Understated Beauty of Railay Beach, Thailand. While Thailand boasts of many famous beaches, few can match the unique beauty of Railay Beach. Accessed only by boat, Railay offers a tranquil escape and jaw-droppingly beautiful scenery. The remarkable combination of white sands, emerald waters, and dramatic limestone cliffs is sure to leave you spellbound. # Chapter 4. The Vibrant Life of Bondi Beach, Australia. If a beach with a vibrant lifestyle is what you're seeking, then Bondi Beach is the perfect destination. This iconic Australian destination is not just a strip of sand; it defines Aussie beach culture. You can surf, suntan, dine in style, or mingle with locals at the Bondi Markets – every experience is a delight. # Chapter 5. The Elegance of Grace Bay, Turks and Caicos. Grace Bay in Turks and Caicos comprises the most beautiful twelve kilometers of beach you will ever encounter. The sands are light and soft, and the waters sparkle in countless shades of blue. This beach gets its finishing touch from a coral reef system that teems with aquatic life, offering fantastic snorkeling adventures. # Conclusion. Overall, whether you're an adventure-seeker, a nature lover or just need a spot under the sun to unwind with a book, these beach destinations offer more than just a beautiful view. They offer a chance to be immersed in the local lifestyle, to uncover stunning natural wonders, and to create unforgettable memories.
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    17:20

    Exploring the Majestic Niagara Falls: A Gateway to Natural Wonder

    # Introduction. Nestled between the borders of the United States and Canada, Niagara Falls stands as one of the most awe-inspiring natural wonders on Earth. With its thundering cascades and mesmerizing mist, it attracts millions of visitors each year. This blog post will take you through the splendor and spectacle of Niagara Falls, providing insights into what makes this destination a must-visit location for travelers. # A Historical Perspective. Niagara Falls has a rich history that dates back thousands of years. Indigenous peoples revered the falls for their natural beauty and spiritual significance. European explorers first documented the falls in the 17th century, with French explorer Samuel de Champlain providing one of the earliest accounts. Over the centuries, Niagara Falls has transformed from a natural wonder into a bustling tourist destination, complete with attractions, hotels, and entertainment options that cater to millions of visitors each year. # The Three Waterfalls. Niagara Falls is not just one, but three separate waterfalls: the American Falls, the Bridal Veil Falls, and the Horseshoe Falls. The American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls are located on the U.S. side, while the Horseshoe Falls straddle the border between both countries. Each of these falls offers a unique perspective and experience. The Horseshoe Falls, with its distinctive curved shape, is the largest and most powerful, offering a breathtaking view from various points in both Canada and the United States. # Attractions and Activities. Visitors to Niagara Falls have no shortage of activities to enjoy. On the Canadian side, journey behind the falls to witness the thunderous waters from a series of tunnels and observation decks. Take a boat ride on the Maid of the Mist to get up close and personal with the cascading torrents, feeling the refreshing spray on your face. For the adventurous, the Whirlpool Aero Car offers stunning views of the churning rapids below. Additionally, the Skylon Tower provides a panoramic view of the falls and the surrounding area, perfect for capturing unforgettable moments. # Nature and Wildlife. Beyond the falls themselves, the Niagara region is rich in natural beauty and biodiversity. The Niagara Gorge, carved by the relentless flow of the river, is a haven for hikers and nature enthusiasts. The Niagara Parks Butterfly Conservatory, located on the Canadian side, offers a vibrant experience with thousands of fluttering butterflies. Birdwatchers can also enjoy spotting various species, such as peregrine falcons and bald eagles, that make their home in the vicinity of the falls. # A Culinary Experience. No trip to Niagara Falls is complete without indulging in its culinary delights. The region boasts a burgeoning food and wine scene, with numerous farm-to-table restaurants and vineyards in nearby Niagara-on-the-Lake. Savor local specialties such as icewine, a unique dessert wine produced from grapes frozen on the vine. The diverse array of dining options ensures that every taste preference is catered to, making for a truly satisfying gastronomic journey. # Conclusion. Niagara Falls is not just a destination; it is an experience that encapsulates the beauty and power of nature. From its rich history and magnificent waterfalls to the plethora of activities and natural splendor in the surrounding area, Niagara Falls promises an unforgettable adventure. Whether you are seeking thrills, relaxation, or simply a chance to marvel at one of the world's most famous natural landmarks, Niagara Falls offers something for everyone. Be sure to add this iconic destination to your travel bucket list and let the magic of Niagara captivate your senses.
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    15:41

    Exploring the World's Most Stunning Beaches

    # Introduction. Beaches are the quintessential symbol of relaxation, adventure, and natural beauty. They offer a blend of golden sands, tranquil waters, and stunning scenery that is unmatched by any other destination. Whether you’re looking to unwind under the sun, ride the waves, or explore marine life, beaches around the world beckon travelers with their unique allure. In this blog post, we’ll take you on a journey to some of the most breathtaking beaches around the globe. # The Serenity of Maldives. The Maldives, a tropical paradise in the Indian Ocean, is renowned for its pristine beaches and crystal-clear waters. The archipelago consists of 26 atolls featuring over a thousand coral islands. Vacationers can indulge in luxurious overwater bungalows, engage in vibrant snorkeling expeditions, and savor the serene ambiance. Beaches like Fulhadhoo and Veligandu Island Beach are perfect for those seeking seclusion and unparalleled beauty. # Picture-Perfect Santorini. Santorini, Greece, is synonymous with picturesque landscapes and unique volcanic beaches. The island's Red Beach, named for its startlingly red volcanic sands, offers a striking contrast against the deep blue waters of the Aegean Sea. For a more traditional experience, the black sand beaches of Kamari and Perissa provide a unique setting complemented by the island’s iconic white-washed buildings and stunning sunsets. # The Vibrant Shores of Rio de Janeiro. Copacabana and Ipanema Beaches in Rio de Janeiro are among the most famous beaches in the world. These stretches of sand are vibrant hubs of activity, where visitors can immerse themselves in the energetic Brazilian culture. From sunbathing and beach volleyball to samba music and lively nightlife, these beaches offer a dynamic and unforgettable experience. The scenic backdrop of granite mountains and lush greenery only adds to their charm. # The Untouched Beauty of Seychelles. Seychelles, an archipelago in the Indian Ocean, boasts some of the most unspoiled beaches on the planet. Anse Source d'Argent on La Digue Island is often cited as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, thanks to its unique granite boulders, shallow turquoise waters, and soft white sands. Visitors can explore the vibrant underwater life with snorkeling and diving or simply relax in the serene surrounds of this tropical haven. # The Surfer’s Paradise of Australia. Australia’s Gold Coast is a mecca for surfers from around the world. Beaches like Surfers Paradise and Burleigh Heads offer some of the best waves and facilities for both novice and seasoned surfers. Beyond surfing, these beaches feature golden sands and bustling beach towns with vibrant nightlife, markets, and numerous dining options. The Australian coastline’s natural beauty and outdoor lifestyle make it a top destination for beach enthusiasts. # Conclusion. From the tranquil sands of the Maldives to the energetic shores of Rio de Janeiro, the world’s beaches offer something for every traveler. Whether you seek adventure, relaxation, or cultural immersion, each beach provides a unique experience that adds to the allure of travel. So pack your sunscreen, grab your beach towel, and embark on a journey to explore these stunning coastal paradises. Each visit promises not just a picturesque setting, but memories that will last a lifetime.
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