Banteay Srey and Banteay Samre, Siem-Reap

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  • Opening hours: 05:00 - 18:00 daily

Built in the tenth century belongs the Angkor Temples complex, Banteay Srey & Banteay Samre are two ancient temples representing the unique art and architecture of the Khmer. Untill now, they are still national treasures of Cambodia and attract a large number of visitors every year.

Situated near the main Angkor temple area, Banteay Srei (means “citadel of the women”) is dubbed as “a jewel in Khmer art” because it reaches the pinnacle of rock art with spectacular sculptures on by the red sandstone walls. It looks like a miniature model of Angkor works. The same fate with more than 45 other vestige of Angkor, the temple was forgotten in decades before officially discovered in 1914 by French archaeologists. Banteay Srei consists of three layers separated by the ports, in which the last one includes the temples and two architectural buildings called is "library". On the stone walls, many motifs such as flowers, lions and gods are exquisitely sculpted every smallest detail. That’s the reason Banteay Srei is considered the masterpieces of sculpture in red sandstone and laterite as well as a precious jewel of the Angkor architectural ensemble. On the small courtyard of the inner layer, there is a complex of three shrines: the northern one worships Vishnu, the central one and the southern one worships Shiva. Almost all statues of guardians inside Banteay Srei are duplicates while the originals are now stored at the National Museum of Phnom Penh.

Also using sandstone as the major material, Banteay Samre which was built under the reign of King Suryavarman II and II Yasovarman in the early 12th century is a Hindu temple in the Angkor Wat architectural style. It is situated to the east of the East Baray. The temple’s name was derived from Samré, the ancient peoples in Indochina.

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