Saturday, August 19, 2006

TA PROHM 10Aug2006

For easy orientation, please click for:

Map of Angkor
Kings of Cambodia
Chronology of Angkor Sites

FIRST ~ Going to Ta Prohm 100806

The road to Ta Prohm is straight and flanked by the forest of Angkor, characterised by huge stately trees and light undergrowths.

The path is well-kept and very pleasant indeed.

The main gate (western side) is being rehabilitated. We make our way via a temporary path.
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The Entrance 100806

For this project, India is the partner. Please click pic for better read.

A brief write-up on Ta Prohm, premier Buddhist university cum monastery, built early 12th century by Jayavarman VII too. Please click pic for better read.

The 4-faced tower, à la the Bayon, of the main gate, being made up.
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The Stroll 100806

The leisurely stroll from the western gate to Ta Prohm.

Mid-way, victims of landmines offer classical Khmer music for a token. But it's lunchtime and the musicians are resting under the cool shady trees, while nearby ...

... a pretty butterfly suckles noon nectar.
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The Trees 100806

There are huge majestic trees everywhere ...

... and they are labeled, but not particularly helpful since they only give the local and scientific names. Please click pic for better read.
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The Door 100806

Soon we spot the entrance, crumbling away, which seems to be the theme of Ta Prohm - the state of alluring neglect.

The door to Ta Prohm in full crumbling glory.

Motif on the arch of the door. Looks like apsaras to me.
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The Front 100806

We pass the doorway and see the front part of Ta Prohm, which faces west.

Some serious work along the path from the entrance to the building.

Peering over the chap's shoulder, I believe they are measuring and documenting the raised stone walkway.
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The Interior 100806

The usual dark corridor with the sacred icon ...

... and passageway ...

... and tower.
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The Living Trees 100806a

This is what Ta Prohm is famous for. Reminds me of the Ents in the Lord of the Rings!

It is left like when it was first discovered in 1920.

The butresses snaking around, engulfing the structures, like pythons searching and constricting their preys.
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The Rubble 100806

The walls crumble with age, after centuries of neglect, ...

... into piles of rubble ...

... while the trees grow on them. Ahhhh ... alluring neglect.
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The Living Trees 100806b

These trees are maybe 300, 400 years old, or even older, so just imagine how old Ta Prohm is.

Treebeard this?

A budding lady archaeologist?

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The Decorations 100806

Intricate decorations. I think they are devatas and apsaras ...

... and of course, the Buddhas.
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The Danger 100806

Part of an ancient building collapsed into a rubble.

Safety precautions everywhere ...

... but hey, I'm as curious as a cat too!
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The Back 100806

The back of Ta Prohm, facing east.

Hang on, are those devatas too?

I mean, these ... ;-)
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