Snapshot – Ta Prohm

Well, here we are folks. It’s the final week of the A-Z challenge, and a challenge it has been this year. I’ll confess I’ve struggled with the motivation to write and I’ve often felt like I’m behind and playing catch up. I realise that’s not the case, as I’ve posted on time each day (so far!) but I was far more organised for the 2016 version. So, I’m kicking the final week off with a visit to one of my favourite sites in Cambodia – Ta Prohm.

Now, if any of you have seen Lara Croft Tomb Raider, you will be familiar with Ta Prohm. It is a ruined and overgrown temple site, and is one of the most beautiful (and most visited) places in Cambodia. Ta Prohm makes up part of the Angkor complex, which is located not far from the modern town of Siem Reap. While it is not as massive or majestic as Angkor Wat or The Bayon, it has a charm and wildness the others lack. Built in the 12th century, it was a hive of activity until the fall of the Khmer empire in the 15th century. Following that it was abandoned and left to ruin for centuries – until being uncovered by European explorers in the 19th century. The beauty of Ta Prohm is that is in relatively unchanged from those days of re-discovery, the site has been untouched by modern hands except to clear a path to walk through.

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Nature truly reclaimed Ta Prohm after its abandonment. The structures are dwarfed and overrun by the roots of a veritable forest of fig and banyan trees. As those thick roots meander their way through the site, it’s almost as though they are the glue that holds it all together. Many of the passageways are impassable because of fallen blocks of stone, the once clear bas reliefs along the tunneled corridors are coated in lichen and moss, and all around you, as you walk through the coolness and serenity of Ta Prohm, is the play of shadow and dappled light seeping through the cracks in the green canopy of the tree tops. It is, in a word, beautiful.

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This post is part of my contribution to the April 2017 A-Z Challenge

For a list and links to my other challenge posts please click here

For those interested in revisiting my 2016 challenge post for T, here’s the link: T is for Travel, but it’s also for Train Wreck …

2017 Badge

 

 

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32 thoughts on “Snapshot – Ta Prohm”

  1. Oh my god! this place is just unique- I recall it from the movie ofcourse but your pics are just incredible Kim. You rightly put it, the roots are reclaiming every part of this human settlement in every way possible. I am amazed at how the roots are so thick and huge and just sitting on top of these structures. Your post has made me wanna visit this site once in my life for sure!!

    ​Taaza Thindi in Bangalore

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Julz. You would love Siem Reap then, it’s so close to all those wonderful ancient temples of Angkor. Just make sure you allow yourself a few days there to really soak it up & to see some of the less well known sites as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. That’s truly incredible. It’s almost post-apocalyptic with the gnarly roots grasping everything up. Beautiful photos and compelling travelogue. Your posts are often better than a guidebook and this one’s a keeper.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for that feedback, I really appreciate it. I hadn’t thought of it from the angle of post-apocalyptic but that’s a fitting description. I imagine it’s realistic too, in the event human populations were decimated.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Aha! Another place which is on my bucket list. Maybe i will need many lifetimes to be able to see all these gorgeous wonders the globe has to offer. You’ve been doing fabulously with your AtoZ posts Kim.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow, those tree roots are enormous. What an adventure you were on. I guess that’s another place to put on my bucket list. I’d better hurry up and get everything done before I take root and am unable to go anywhere!

    Liked by 1 person

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