Angkor Wat is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the northwestern part of Cambodia, and is a representative temple of the ruins group. Originally built as a Hindu temple, it was converted into a Buddhist temple in the late 16th century and is still a Theravada Buddhist temple today.
● Location: In the province of Siem Reap, Cambodia
● When constructed: Early 12th century
● Size:The outer wall is a rectangle measuring 1 km from east to west and 0.8 km from south to east. The entire floor area is 2.1 km2.
● Features:Suryavarman II, who achieved the success of the Angkor Empire, built it as a Hindu temple hoping to become one with Vishnu, one of the major Hindu gods. It was later transformed into a Buddhist temple.
1. Interesting Story about Artifacts and Historic Sites
There's a really special place in Cambodia that makes the people there very proud. It's called Angkor Wat, and it's so important that it's even on their flag and money! Imagine a huge temple in the middle of a jungle—it's like a magical hidden treasure.
A long time ago, in the 12th century, there was a king named Suryavarman II. He wanted to build a special home for the gods, where he could be with the god Vishnu after he died. So he gathered over 10,000 workers who dug the ground and built a beautiful three-level temple. Each level represents a different world—the first level is for animals, the second level is for humans like us, and the top level is for the gods.
The temple has five tall towers that look like mountains, and it faces west towards the world of the afterlife. The walls of the temple have amazing carvings that tell stories from a religion called Hinduism. They even show pictures of King Suryavarman II! Can you imagine how talented the artists were to make such detailed carvings?
Angkor Wat is surrounded by a big moat, like a huge water-filled ditch, which represents the ocean around the gods' world. It's like a protective barrier. Over time, the religion in Cambodia changed, and Angkor Wat became a Buddhist temple. Many statues of Buddha were built around the temple. People from all over the world visit Angkor Wat to see its beauty and learn about its history. It's so special that UNESCO, a group that protects important places, listed Angkor Wat as a World Heritage Site. Sadly, some things have been lost or stolen from Angkor Wat because of wars and theft.