Angkor Thom, which means 'Big Angkor', is one of the largest sites in the Angkor Archaeological Park. This huge walled city with a moat was the last great capital of the Angkorian Empire. Inside, you'll find some of the most impressive temples of the Angkorian period.

When Jayavarman VII defeated the Cham invaders in 1181, and recaptured the Angkorian capital, he instituted a massive building program throughout the empire. He constructed Angkor Thom as the new capital city and encompassed the already existing temples of Baphuon and Phimeanakas. At its zenith, it is estimated that the city had a population of almost a million.

Angkor Thom in Siem Reap - one of the highlights of 10 Must-See Temples in Siem Reap (Read all about Siem Reap here)

To enter the city, you have to pass through one of the 5 huge entrance gates. There is a gate at each of the 4 points of the compass (north, east, south, and west), as well as the so-called Victory Gate that leads to the Royal Palace area. Each gate is topped by 4 giant faces, and the bridges leading to the gates are lined with statues of gods and spirits. 

Angkor Thom contains the famous temple of Bayon, which is surrounded by 50 towers with over 200 faces showing varying degrees of erosion and wear.

Angkor Thom in Siem Reap

Location: Angkor Archaeological Park, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Open: Daily from 7.30am to 5.30pm

Penny Wong | Compulsive Traveller