Preah Ko

March 1, 2009

in Angkor Temples

Temple Name: Preah Ko
Notable Features: Bull statues. Some of the earliest examples of Angkor architecture.
Getting There: Located on the east side of Siem Reap. Take route #6 (Airport Road) for 12.5 km. There is a sign on the left that indicates the turnoff to Preah Ko. Turn left at the sign and travel 1.2 km until you reach the temple. Most tuk tuk drivers will know how to get to Preah Ko.

One of Angkor’s Earliest Temples

King Indravarman I built Preah Ko sometime in the 9th century. It is one of the earliest Angkorian temples, dating back to the dawn of the Khmer civilization. When Preah Ko was built, it was surrounded by walls, a moat, and several gopuras (gateways). Today, only footprints of these original elements remain.

The temple’s six main towers are in excellent shape, considering their age. They have been the object of extensive restoration and contain an array of lovely carvings. The towers sit atop a single platform, accessed by a series of well-preserved stairs.

Preah Ko was one of the prominent structures in the ancient city of Hariharalaya, one of the the Khmer Empire’s earliest capitals. Today, Hariharalaya is known as Ruluos. Most of the city is in an advanced state of ruin.

The name Preah Ko means “Sacred Bull”. It is named after the bull statues that guard the temple’s central towers.

The laterite (clay) and sandstone towers of Preah Ko are particularly dazzling in the sunset hours. The beams of the setting sun bring out hues of salmon, pink, and orange from the temple stone.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Previous post:

Next post: