Angkor’s Magical Beng Mealea and Koh Ker
Angkor’s Magical Beng
Mealea and Koh Ker
The jungle around Siem Reap still has a lot of surprises for the more adventurous traveller.Two
lesser-known temple ruins, Beng Mealea and Koh Ker are among the least sought-after
in the whole region yet are must-see essentials for its size and history.
WHY THIS TOUR?
Interested in jungle-based temples outside Siem Reap? Our Koh Ker and Beng Mealea tour brings you deep into the Cambodian countryside and back in time. A region, where one still can find remote villages and pristine forests where deer freely roam around.
Part of these temple ruins is quite unique, to say the least, so those with a sense of adventure and looking for a day trip away from the Angkor temples may have just found the right tour. Seen both as a perfect add-on to the existing ruins of Greater Angkor as well moving to the front of the line as a stand-alone tour, this full-day option fills the void when explorers can’t get enough of the majestic marvels of what has put Siem Reap on the world map.
08:00 - 16:00
It is time to get ready for a day out and about, away from the main Angkor sites. From 8 am onward, together with guide and driver, the day will be packed with local encounters and experiences with an off-the-beaten-track element included.
On this tour, we travel through the thriving countryside, past rice paddy fields and local villages to Beng Mealea temple. Beng Mealea – the “Lotus Pond” Temple from the early 11th Century – was built by Suryavarman II as a Hindu Temple. One of the few accessible temples, hidden in a maze of the jungle – if there is one temple to explore resplendent with jungle engulfing it, it is Beng Mealea. Clambering over large sandstone blocks to reach the inner sanctuary and eerie worship corridor is an exploration to remember. Architecturally, Beng Mealea is known for its innovative, in its time, construction of hallways, it was a large temple with wide galleries foreshadowing Angkor Wat. A picnic lunch will be arranged during the tour.
Continue with a visit of Koh Ker Temple which represents the remnants of the capital of the Khmer Empire from 928 AD – 944 AD, a very unique period in the Age of Angkor. The premier, dilapidated bastion of the complex is Prasat Thom, an imposing 7-tiered pyramid and temple complex. It was home to Jayavarman IV, the maternal uncle of the two previous kings and a great feudal landholder, who ascended the throne in 928. In only a few years, Jayavarman IV built many colossal sanctuaries dedicated to Shiva, ruling over large numbers of people and in considerable splendour for twenty years until succeeded by his son Harshavarman I.
We head back to Siem Reap while we pass remote villages and the dense, untouched jungle behind us. We can assure you that you will look back to this day as an adventurous one.