I’m not a Lara Croft fan but I couldn’t help remembering that certain scenes from the 2001 movie were filmed at the Angkor Archaeological Park. In particular, during one scene, Angelina Jolie meets a mysterious little girl at Ta Prohm. I too met a little girl at Ta Prohm. She was sitting among the ruins and graciously agreed to me taking a photo of her.
Ta Prohm was founded by King Jayavarman VII as a Buddhist monastery and university. According to temple records, it housed more than 12,500 people (including 615 dancers). Unlike most other temples, Ta Prohm was primarily left in the condition it was found. It was not taken apart and fully restored. As a result, Ta Prohm has an eerie atmosphere with overgrown trees overtaking many parts of the temple.
Although Ta Prohm has become one of the more popular temples in Angkor, it is quite large. Mr. Selfish and I were able to find spots where no other tourists were exploring. We enjoyed Ta Prohm the most out of all of the temples in Angkor.
Another temple that has been left mostly unrestored is Preah Khan. Mr. Selfish and I definitely enjoyed the ambience of the unrestored temples more than the fully restored ones. I couldn’t get enough shots of the ruins with overgrown trees.
We visited Preah Khan right before sunset, and the lighting was phenomenal.
I highly recommend visiting both Ta Prohm and Preah Khan during a visit to Siem Reap. Both temples are beautiful and full of photo ops.