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Angkor, Cambodia

New Wonders of the World Photo Gallery: Angkor, Cambodia

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The world's largest complex of sacred temples, Angkor, Cambodia, was a finalist in the campaign to choose the New 7 Wonders of the World.
World's largest sacred temple complex

Khmer Architecture of the Angkor Wat Temple in Cambodia

Press photo © 2000-2006 NewOpenWorld Foundation

Angkor is a 154 square mile archaeological site (400 square kilometres) in the northern Cambodian province of Siem Reap. The area contains the remains of the Khmer Empire, a sophisticated civilization that prospered between the 9th and 14th centuries in Southeast Asia.

Khmer architectural ideas are thought to have originated in India, but these designs were soon mixed with Asian and local art that evolved to create what UNESCO has called "a new artistic horizon." Beautiful and ornate temples extend throughout the agricultural community that continues to live in Siem Reap. Ranging from simple brick towers to complicated stone structures, temple architecture has identified a distinct social order within the Khmer community.

Not only is Angkor one of the largest sacred temple complexes in the world, but the landscape is testament to the ancient civilization's urban planning. Water collection and distribution systems as well as routes of communication have been unearthed.

The most famous temples in the Angkor Archaeological Park are Angkor Wat—a large, symmetrical, well-restored complex surrounded by geometric canals—and the Bayon Temple, with its giant stone faces.

Learn About Angkor, Cambodia:

Source: Angkor, UNESCO World Heritage Centre [accessed January 26, 2014]

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