A religious site that is unmatched in size, Angkor Wat is a perfect location to wander for quite literally days.
Beginning at the end
I snapped this just as we were leaving Angkor Wat. Michael and I spent the full day exploring, and even though we exhausted from the tiny portion we covered, I almost feel we would have stayed even longer. Regardless, I fell in love with this soft hazy photo, because it perfectly captured how I felt at the end of the day: warm, sleepy, and in a dreamy daze already reminiscing about the amazing ruins we saw.
Angkor Wat is the largest religious site in the world. It covers over 400 acres, which is about four times the size of Vatican City. But it's fascinating that this site was almost erased from history. In 1996 Angkor was scanned by radar from the US Space Shuttle. Archeologists later used these images to conclude environmental degradation from land overuse and flooding nearly destroyed the site. Since, many countries have donated to reconstruction efforts, and now they boast 1 million+ visitors a year.
The swarm of tourists doesn't detract from the marvel of these ruins as you might expect. Angkor Thom was the capital of the Khmer Empire and was established in the late 12th century by King Jayavarman VII. The temple of Angkor Thom was the best preserved that we visited, we were even able to make out some of the writing and their scripture.