One of the main tourist attractions in Cambodia is the ancient temple of Angkor Wat. The temple, built in the 1100’s by the Khmer king Suryavarman II, is an incredible work of architecture that rivals and even surpasses other, more well-known buildings.
Made out of stone, the temple towers over the surrounding landscape. It is richly decorated, both inside and out, with statues and bas-relief sculptures. Angkor Wat was built as a Hindi temple, dedicated to the god Vishnu. Then, later, in the 13th century, the new King Srindravarman changed the state religion of Cambodia from Hinduism to Buddhism and converted Angkor Wat into a Buddhist shrine. However, you don’t have to be Hindu or Buddhist to appreciate the temple’s monumental beauty and grandeur.
Over the past 20 years, restoration and conservation has been ongoing at the temple. Tourism at the temple has boomed in recent years as well-according to Wikipedia, 561,000 tourists visited in 2004 and 677,000 visited in 2005. Angkor Wat is one of the defining features of the Cambodian landscape and is featured prominently on the country’s flag.
To visit Angkor Wat, you will need a passport and a Cambodian tourist visa. You should definitely make sure that you have all your paperwork in order before you plan to leave. To get a Cambodian visa, you’ll need the following items:
- A Cambodian visa application (available here).
- Two passport-sized photos
- A US passport that will be valid for at least 6 months after you enter Cambodia.
- A copy of your itinerary.
When applying for a Cambodian visa (or any foreign visa, for that matter), using an expediting company like RushMyTravelVisa.com can make the process go faster and more smoothly. You’ll get help from a professional visa specialist, a handy checklist to help you gather all of the necessary information, and help with the paperwork.