The temples of Battambang - photos #2

Battambang is one of my favourite locations in Cambodia. It has a laid-back, tranquil atmosphere, the city's inhabitants are incredibly friendly towards foreigners and surrounding the city are a number of interesting Angkorean temple sites well worth exploring while you spend a few leisurely days in Cambodia's second city. These two pages give the viewer a closer look at those ancient temple sites, which attract just a fraction of the travellers who descend on Siem Reap and the Angkor complex in increasing numbers each year.

Ek Phnom

The 11th century temple of Ek Phnom, built by Suryavarman I. This is the central sanctuary.Inside the central sanctuary with lintels open to the elements.The central sanctuary is on a large platform, accessed by steep stairs.

The eastern entanceway to the central sanctuary of Ek Phnom.A lintel showing the Churning of the Sea of Milk, with Vishnu steadying the pivot and Brahma looking on from high. Above the lintel is a carved pediment.One of many large windows of the central structure with five turned balusters.

Figures pulling on the snake in the Churning of the Sea of Milk lintel. The other side of the lintel has been vandalized.The south lintel shows Shiva dancing between two rearing horses, poised above a grinning Kala.This lintel shows Indra atop a three-headed Airavata, with the ever-present Kala.

A rather worn lintel showing a dancing figure above a Kala.Another worn lintel showing Shiva and Uma riding on the back of the sacred bull Nandi.The outer wall of the main compound has a sandstone gallery and entrance gopuras.

Phnom Banan

A stone lion and naga head guard the foot of the stairs to Phnom Banan.A tower awaits the traveller at the summit of a steep climb.Broken lion statues litter the steps leading down from the summit of the hill. A detailed lintel and pediment in situ at Phnom Banan.

A large kala monster is the centrepiece of this lintel at Phnom Banan.The inner courtyard of Phnom Banan showing three of the five towers.A damaged lintel on the floor at Phnom Banan.

A decorated wall of one of the main towers of Phnom Banan.A laterite tower watched over by a disused artillery gun.Evidence of looters as devatas are beheaded on the colourful walls of Phnom Banan.


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