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Baphuon Temple and its Giant Reclining Buddha

Baphuon Temple and its Giant Reclining Buddha

Immediately after exiting the Bayon temple, we moved to the Baphuon temple. It is only few hundreds of meters (350+) away from Bayon, which includes the 150-meter walkway from the main road. The surroundings of the temple is a swamp, which gets deeper on wet season – so, its builders created an elevated pathway.

The walkway to Baphuon Temple

The Baphuon temple is also located within the Angkor Thom complex like the Bayon. It is a three-tiered pyramidal or mountain-like temple that was built in the mid-11th century. This 150-meter by 100-meter monument has a height of roughly 50 meters, including its tower.

Each side of the structure has gopura (arched gate) and below it are stairs which are used as access to the top tiers or levels. Makeshift stairs were installed because the original ones were no longer safe for the tourists.

Though the steps were too steep, we climbed really fast due to the excitement of seeing the scenes from above – and we weren’t disappointed.

The Baphuon temple

The view from the top is  breathtaking. You can see the enormity of the complex’s territory and picturesque view of the entire terrain.

The second and the third tier of the temple looked like a pyramid mounted on the top of a vast edifice (first tier).

A pyramid-like structure on the 2nd level of Baphuon

Around Baphuon Temple

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Installed on the top-most tier is a tower. The tower has four door-like columns facing the four directions; north, south, east, and west. Unfortunately, tourists are not allowed to access it.

roderick ordonez climbing baphuon

Roderick on his way to the top

baphuon temple summit

The highest point of Baphuon temple

We took the east gopura when we entered Baphuon and exited on the west side. When we looked back, we noticed that the side of the temple resembles a giant reclining Buddha. It measures 9 meters tall by 70 meters long and covers the second level.

An unfinished giant reclining Buddha on the west side of Baphuon temple

A tree that grows on northwest corner of Baphuon temple. It seems that it devoured a structure

We did end our Angkor Thom tour in Baphuon. We proceeded to the nearby Phimeanakas after that.

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