All the temples, gates and terraces I will write about are a part of Angkor Wat. We visited 14 in all - they all vary in size, so hang on tight for the next few days we will race through the temples of Angkor Wat.
Angkor Thom dates back to the late 12th century. There are 5 gates in all.
We entered Angkor Thom through the South Gate as it is the gate that has been restored the most.
To get to the gate you must cross a moat and it is lined by an avenue of statues.
There are statues on either side carrying the body of a giant serpent - a seven headed naga.
It is believed that the purpose of the naga was to guard the city's royal wealth and to link the world of men (outside the temple) to the world of the gods.
On the left side the figures are gods:
People on their way to work - I found it very interesting that people cut through the grounds of Angkor Wat to get to work, many people actually work on the grounds; children are selling anything they can get their hands on from fruit, to bracelets, to paper ornaments they make, to water and some just beg.
I also feel very blessed to have visited at this time; we can walk right in, climb through the temple touch the walls and just be up close and personal with the temples.
Elephant Terrace was built first in the late 12th century and Leper King Terrace was added later in the early 13th century.
The Terraces were the foundation for royal receptions.