Monday, June 27, 2011

Bangkok Diaries 2009

Suvarnabhumi International Airport
Ceiling detail

Bangkok city
The Dome at Lebua, State Tower Hotel
Ornate temple roof
The Marble Temple [Wat Benchamabophit] is named after the white Carrara marble (from Italy) of which it is constructed. The name 'Wat Bechamabophit' means : the temple of the fifth king.
The inside walls of the compound are decorated with murals depicting the entire Ramakien,which is Thailand's national epic, derived from the Indian Ramayana epic. The demons wear shoes and the monkeys dont.

Grand Palace and Temple of the Emerald Buddha [Wat Phra Kaew] This is Thailand's most important and sacred temple

Inside Wat Pho or the Temple of Reclining Buddha.The temple is also known as the birthplace of traditional Thai massage.Wat Pho is the one of the largest and oldest wat in Bangkok

The Reclining Buddha's mother-of-pearl feet

Collection boxes similar to that in Hindu temples
The Temple of the Emerald Buddha

The cloister or so-called gallery is at the rear of the Ubosoth Hall

The beautiful Wat Phra Kaew/ Temple of Emerald Buddha

Decorative exterior of Phra Mondop

The Grand Palace is inspired by European designs, except for the roof

The Grand Palace is used only for occasional ceremonial purposes and is no longer the royal residence.

Ramayana murals in the Temple of the Emerald Buddha

Ramayana murals in the Temple of the Emerald Buddha

Ramayana murals in the Temple of the Emerald Buddha

The seashells and bits of porcelain used to make the mosaic designs had previously been used as ballast by boats coming to Bangkok from China.

Colorful ATMs
Moon bar atop Banyan Tree hotel, 61st floor.

Moon bar atop Banyan Tree hotel, 61st floor.

Mezzaluna Restaurant inside The Dome at Lebua State Tower

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

City of Gods: Cambodia (2009)

Hiking up Mt.Kulen - rest stop

Hiking up Mt.Kulen
Rare $2 bill

Rare $2 bill

Double rainbow

Kbal Spean ("Head Bridge") is an Angkorian era site on the southwest slopes of the Kulen Hills in Cambodia, 25 km from the main Angkor group. It is commonly known as the valley of a 1000 Lingas.

The motifs for the stone carvings are roughly three: myriads of lingams, depicted as neatly arranged bumps that cover the surface of a rock; lingam - yoni designs; and various Hindu mythological motifs, including depictions of gods and animals.

Carved in the rocky bed of a small river are over a thousand Shiva Linga symbols

Banteay Srei
It is cut from stone of a pinkish-red hue and includes some of the finest stone carvings

Banteay Srei - Citadel of the Women- said to have been built by a woman.

white robed priests at banteay srei

moat surrounding the temple complex [HDR]

symbolic representation of Hindu cosmology-consisting of an enormous temple symbolizing the mythical Mt. Meru, its five inter-nested rectangular walls and moats represent chains of mountains and the cosmic ocean. the short dimensions of the vast compound are precisely aligned along a north-south axis, while the east-west axis has been deliberately diverted 0.75 degrees south of east and north of west, seemingly in order to give observers a three day anticipation of the spring equinox.

Angkor Wat ("City Temple") is a vast temple complex near Siem Reap,in Cambodia. Built in the 12th cent by the king of the Khmer empire, Angkor Wat was built as a royal temple dedicated to Hindu deity Vishnu.After the city of Angkor fell to invaders, Angkor Wat receded into the jungle but continued as a Buddhist temple and a pilgrimage site over the centuries.Angkor Wat is the best preserved example of Khmer architecture in Cambodia and is so grand in design that some rank it among the seven wonders of the world.Today, Angkor Wat represents Cambodia. It is a national symbol and appears on the country's flag.

columns and archs at Angkor Wat

Many of the bas-reliefs in the temple depict scenes from the Ramayana and Mahabharata, Hindu sacred texts that recount the adventures of two major incarnations of Vishnu.

The heads had been stolen by vandals.

A statue of Vishnu, to whom the Temple is dedicated, (approx. 16ft high), is located at the entry of the Outer Enclosure. Carved from a single piece of sandstone, it is draped and receives offerings from modern pilgrims.

Bayon temple..This temple represents the "Churning of the Ocean Milk for the Immortality Elixir" story that is frequently found in Hindu epics Ramayana and Mahabharata.

Location of the Tomb Raider scene

Shrine to Vishnu, one of the Hindu Gods that Angkor Wat was originally dedicated to

Pre Rup- It means Turning the Body and refers to a traditional method of cremation.

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