4/20/2003--Angkor Wat Temples, Siem Reap, Cambodia..Sunrises over Angkor Wat. Angkor Wat is located about six kilometers (four miles) north of Siem Reap, south of Angkor Thom. ..Angkor Wat was built in the first half of the 12th century (113-5BC). Estimated construction time of the temple is 30 years by King Suryavarman II, dedicated to Vishnu (Hindu), replica of Angkor Thom style of art...BACKGROUND .Angkor Wat, the largest monument of the Angkor group and the best preserved, is an architectural masterpiece. Its perfection in composition, balance, proportions, relief's and sculpture make it one of the finest monuments in the world. ..Wat is the Thai name for temple (the French spelling is "vat "), which was probably added to "Angkor "when it became a Theravada Buddhist monument, most likely in the sixteenth century (for the etymology of the name 'Angkor' see page 17) After 1432 when the capital moved to Phnom Penh, Angkor Wat was cared for by Buddhist monks. ..It is generally accepted that Angkor Wat was a funerary temple for King Suryavarman II and oriented to the west to conform to the symbolism between the setting sun and death. The bas-reliefs, designed for viewing from left to right in the order of Hindu funereal ritual, support this function. ...All photographs ©2003 Stuart Isett.All rights reserved.