Preah Vihear province, which borders Thailand and Laos to the north, is home to three of the most captivating temples of the Angkorian era: the Preah Vihear temple, the Koh Ker temple, and the Preah Khan Kampong Svay temple. It also houses communities of many ethnic hill tribes.Koh Ker used to be a capital of the Khmer Emperor King Jayavarman IV who built this city in the year 921AD. Some parts of the temples are still hidden in the jungle and are not accessible. The Preah Vihear temple is most significant in this province.The temple of Preah Vihear, dedicated to Shiva, is situated on the edge of a plateau that dominates the plain of Cambodia. The temple is composed of a series of sanctuaries linked by a system of pavements and staircases over an 800 metre long axis and dates back to the first half of the 11th century AD. Nevertheless, its complex history can be traced to the 9th century, when the hermitage was founded. This site is particularly well preserved, mainly due to its remote location. It is exceptional for the quality of its architecture, which is adapted to the natural environment and the religious function of the temple, as well as for the exceptional quality of its carved stone ornamentation.A unique architectural complex of a series of sanctuaries linked by a system of pavements and staircases on an 800 metre long axis, this temple is an outstanding masterpiece of Khmer architecture, in terms of plan, decoration and relationship to the spectacular landscape environment.
Preah Khan Kampong Svay, also known as Prasat Bakan, is a complex of gigantic proportions located in the southwest corner of Preah Vihear province. It covers an area 4 times that of the Angkor Wat with a 3 km long Baray and a large number of towers or Prasats within the compound. Largely unknown and rarely visited, the temple had been very badly looted over the years.
Preah Vihear Attraction
Preah Vihear Temple
The Preah Vihear Temple is a Khmer temple situatedy atop Pey Tadi, a 525-metre (1720 ft) cliff in the Dangrek Mountains located in the Preah Vihear Province of northern Cambodia. The temple gives its name to Cambodia’s Preah Vihear province and is 140 km from Angkor Wat, approximately 320 km from Phnom Penh.Preah Vihear Temple has the most spectacular setting of all the temples built during the six-centuries-long Khmer Empire. The Temple is composed of a series of sanctuaries linked by a system of pavements and staircases over an 800 metre long axis and is built with a clear view of the plains from where it stands. Dedicated to Shiva, this temple is unusual among Khmer temples in being constructed along a long north-south axis rather than having the conventional rectangular plan with orientation toward the east. However, although the structure of this temple is very different from the temple ‘mountains’ found at Angkor, it is believed to have been built to serve the same purpose as a stylised representation of Mount Meru, the home of the gods.
Thmatboey is an isolated village located in Kulen Promtep Wildlife Sanctuary in the Northern Plains of Cambodia. The site supports globally important breeding populations of two critically endangered Ibis species: the Giant Ibis and the White-shouldered Ibis, in the only known nesting site of this species. Visitors can walk through a rich eco-system of open woodlands, seasonally-inundated grasslands, deciduous dipterocarp forest and scattered wetlands. Between the 9th and 15th centuries A.D. the Khmer Empire based at Angkor dominated the landscape and many features can still be seen today.
Ba Kan Temple
The Ba Kan located at Ta Seng Village, Ranaksei Commune, Sang Kum Thmey District in 105-Kilometer distanced from the provincial town by the National Road No 12 (64), then turning right more 30Kilometers. Ba Kan is the cultural site. Nowadays, the temple has no tourists to visit yet.
Steung Ksach Resort
Is the natural resort, locates along the river of Sen at Thmey Village, Kampong Pra Nak Commune, Tbeng Mean Chey District in three-Kilometer distance from the provincial town by a trail. The resort has served the local visitors especially those who live in the provincial town of Preah Vihear with their leisure activities usually like swimming and boating during the national festivals. Preah Vihear Province has 228 ancient temples included:
- 108 temples in Ku Len District.
- 16 temples in Sang Kum Thmey District.
- 55 temples in Cham Ksan District.
- 18 temples in Chheb District.
- 11 temples in Ro Vieng District.
- 11 temples in Chey Sen District.
- 09 temples in Tbeng Mean Chey District.
Koh Ker Temple
Koh Ker was once an ancient capital of Cambodia, located in Srayong Cheung village, Srayong commune, Kulen district, about 49 kilometers west of the provincial town. The Koh Ker complex is on the Chhork Koki highland. It was built by King Jayavaraman IV (AD 928-942). Koh Ker temple is 35 meters high, and its design resembles a seven-stepped stupa. The temple faces west toward Angkor city. It was built to worship Treypuvanesvara, the god of happiness.So far, 96 temples have been found in Koh Ker: Dav, Rumlum Bey, Beung Veng, Trapiang Prey, Dey Chhnang, Srok Srolao, Lingam, Kuk Srakum, Trapiang Ta, Sophy, Krahom, Andoung, Ang Khna, Teuk Krahom, Damrei Sar, Krarab, Banteay Pichoan, Kuk, Kmao, Thneung, Thorn Balang, Rohal, Chamneh, Sampich, Trapiang Svay, Neang Kmao, Pram, Bat, Khnar Chen, Klum, Chrab, Dangtung, Prang, Kampiang…. These temples were not constructed near each other. Today, many of them are no longer standing, and some are buried in the ground. The followings are locations and descriptions of some of the Koh Ker temples.