Sunday, July 11, 2010

100707 Siem Reap, Cambodia Pt4: Bantaey Kdei, Prasat Kravan

Bantaey Kdei

After lunch, we headed to the second to last temple we were visiting - Bantaey Kdei. Bantaey Kdei was built in the reign of Jayavarnam VII, but in the style of the Bayon temple in Angkor Thom. Like the medium sized temples in Angkor, Bantaey Kdei had the multi-circle structure found in Ta Phrom, Bayon and the Angkor Wat.

Bantaey Kdei temple

Stupas held together by string

As Bantaey Kdei is not as well upkept as the other medium to large temples in the vicinity, many of the stupas are starting to fall apart. This is also due to the poorer quality sandstone used to build this temple. As a temporary measure before restoration, strings are tied around the stupa to prevent the stones from falling apart.

Buddha statue in Bantaey Kdei

Prasat Kravan

Prasat Kravan

Prasat Kravan is a small redbrick temple, and is the oldest temple we visited. Built in the 9th and 10th centuries, most writings found in Prasat Kravan are in Sanskrit. As this temple is dedicated to Vishnu, there used to be a statue of Vishnu in the central tower, but now, the statue has been taken to the National Museum in Phnom Penh for safekeeping. The walls of the central tower are covered in its original bas-relief from the 9th/10th century

Sanskrit on the walls

Original bas-relief in the central tower of Prasat Kravan

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