Asia Travel News

The Bayon is a mystical addition to a tour of Cambodia

Southeast Asia is home to some of the most stunning ancient architecture in the world. This rings true in whatever country you're in, but it is also the case for a tour of Cambodia. There are many historical sites spread throughout the country, but the Bayon is arguably the best-known, and you shouldn't leave Cambodia without visiting this centuries old temple.

Located in the Angkor region of the country, the Bayon dates back between the 12th and 13th century, when it was built as the state's official Buddhist temple. Today it attracts throngs of tourists thanks in large part to the iconic stone faces carved into each of the enormous towers. All told, there are 216 faces at the Bayon, and experts believe they were created as a likeness of King Jayavarman VII, who ruled the Khmer Empire during that time period. The faces are particularly intriguing given their expressive facial features and have helped create a mysterious atmosphere on the grounds of the Bayon.

While the stone faces are the most easily recognizable aspect of the temple, there are many other reasons why you should make the Bayon part of your tour of Cambodia. Most notably, the complex's outer gallery is replete with intricate artwork depicting important historical events.  

A visit to the Bayon will likely pique your interest in the many other temples throughout the region. You may want to head west to explore some of the best sites a tour of Thailand has to offer, including Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn, which dates back to the 17th century, and Bangkok's Wat Paryoon.

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