We woke up at 5AM this morning and embarked on a journey to check out the gigantic smiling faces of Bayon Temple, which is about 30 min tuk tuk ride from our hotel. Radhika decided to be in bliss in meditation at Angkor Wat, while kids and I decided to explore the ancient ruins. We were the only visitors at these ruins (as most tourist compete to go to Angkor Wat sunrise in the morning), so we felt extra eerie and adventurous, standing / walking alone in the midst of gigantic rocks, with the whole surroundings looked as if it’s from a scene from Indiana Jones / Tomb Raider type of movie setting. Here are the 50 pics (most of the taken by Revanth and Aniketh) that I have documented in the below blog with excerpts from Wiki
The Bayon is another well-known and richly decorated Khmer temple at Angkor, and is built in the late 12th as the official state temple of the Mahayana Buddhist King Jayavarman VII. The Bayon’s most distinctive feature is the multitude of serene and massive stone faces on the many towers, which jut out from the upper terrace and cluster around its central peak. The temple is known also for two impressive sets of bas-reliefs, which present an unusual combination of mythological, historical, and mundane scenes. The Bayon was the last state temple to be built at Angkor, and the only Angkorian state temple to be built primarily as a Mahayana Buddhist shrine dedicated to the Buddha. The similarity of the 216 gigantic faces on the temple’s towers to other statues of the king has led many scholars to the conclusion that the faces are representations of Jayavarman VII himself.
Inner gallery is decorated for the most part with scenes from Hindu mythology. Some of the figures depicted are Siva, Vishnu, and Brahma, the members of the trimurti or threefold godhead of Hinduism, Apsaras or celestial dancers, Ravana and Garuda. The upper terrace is home to the famous “face towers” of the Bayon, each of which supports two, three or (most commonly) four gigantic smiling faces. At one point, the temple was host to 49 such towers; now only 37 remain. The number of faces is approximately 200, but since some are only partially preserved there can be no definitive count
Full Video of Glimpses from trip to Camobodia
Be sure to check out other blogs related to Cambodia trip
https://saichintala.com/2015/03/27/temple-ruins-of-cambodia/ (Temple Ruins of Cambodia)
https://saichintala.com/2015/03/25/artistic-angkor-wat/ (Artistic Angkor Wat)
https://saichintala.com/2015/03/25/ta-prohm-tomb-raider-famed-temple/ (Ta Prohm, Tomb Raider Famed Temple)
7 thoughts on “Smiling Faces of Bayon Temple”
Pics are true eye fest Sai..feeling Nice to see details of old temples ..seriously there is a lot to learn from you about work life balance 🙂
Awesome captures. Must be a great experience!
Beautiful pics Sai!