Posts Tagged ‘Angkor Wat’

Mystery at Angkor Wat

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

Paintings that are invisible to the naked eye have been found on the walls of the Angkor Wat temple in Cambodia.

A pinpeat orchestra painting on the wall of Angkor Wat

A pinpeat orchestra painting on the wall of Angkor Wat

There is much to marvel at when you visit Angkor Wat. But what visitors cannot see are 200 hidden paintings on the temple walls. New, digitally enhanced images reveal detailed murals at the temple showing elephants, deities, boats, orchestral ensembles and people riding horses, though all are invisible to the naked eye. Of course, many of the faded markings could be graffiti left behind by pilgrims after Angkor Wat was abandoned in the 15th century. But the more elaborate paintings may be relics of the earliest attempts to restore the temple, researchers said. A technique called decorrelation stretch analysis, which exaggerates subtle color differences, was used to bring them to life. One chamber in the highest tier of Angkor Wat’s central tower, known as the Bakan, contains an elaborate scene of a traditional Khmer musical ensemble known as the pinpeat, which is made up of different gongs, xylophones, wind instruments and other percussion instruments. In the same chamber, there’s an intricate scene featuring people riding horses between two structures and so on.

Though researchers don’t know exactly when the paintings were created, speculation suggests that the most elaborate artworks may have been commissioned by Cambodia’s King Ang Chan, who made an effort to restore the temple during his reign in the 16th century. During this time, unfinished carvings were completed and Angkor Wat began its transformation into a Buddhist pilgrimage site, and some of the newly revealed paintings have Buddhist iconography. The mystery continues.

Exploring Mahendraparvata, the sacred mountain of Phnom Kulen

Friday, May 16th, 2014

The Hanuman team was recently up on the holy mountain of Phnom Kulen to explore some new sites discovered as part of an aerial LIDAR survey of the ancient Khmer city of Mahendraparvata.

 

Mahendraparvata hit the headlines in 2013 as a ‘lost city’ was revealed through the use of aerial LIDAR data. This was 21st century archaeology at its very best and several new sites were discovered as well as a much bigger urban settlement than was previously realised. Phnom Kulen has long been known to archaeologists as one of the earliest capitals of the Khmer empire and a holy site where King Jayavarman II is said to have invoked the devaraja ceremony, making him the human incarnation of the Hindu God Shiva on earth. Long removed from the tourist map by civil war, Phnom Kulen was occupied by the Khmer Rouge for nearly three decades, only falling to government forces in 1998. In recent years, travellers have been able to visit and Hanuman operates the unique Sacred Mountain Safari to Phnom Kulen, a luxury camping adventure: http://www.hanuman.travel/pdf/Hanuman-Temple-Safaris-Guide.pdf

In this video, our team explores some new remote sites on the holy mountain, including the brick temples of Damrei Krab and Thmor Dap, the early pyramid temple of Rom Cheng and holy carvings of Poeng Tbal. The temples date from the 9th century and the reign of Jayavarman II, pre-dating the relocation of the capital to Angkor by almost a century. Rong Chen is believed to be the temple where the devaraja ceremony actually took place, although it is in a very dilapidated condition today.

King Jayavarman II later moved the capital to the temples of Roluos, about 15km southeast of Siem Reap and the temple of Preah Ko was dedicated to his posthumous name of Paremesvara.

Contact the Hanuman team for more details on an adventurous motorbike exploration of the holy mountain of Phnom Kulen or enquire about our original Sacred Mountain Safari, the only luxurious way to explore the mountain on an overnight expedition.

 

Yamashita Authentic in Laos and Cambodia

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

Celebrated National Geographic photographer Michael Yamashita will be running two photographic workshops in Laos and Cambodia later this year, with Lonely Planet author Nick Ray as Tour Leader.

The Mekong River at Luang Prabang, Michael Yamashita

The Mekong River at Luang Prabang, Michael Yamashita

Michael Yamashita is one of the great National Geographic photographers, spending more than 30 years traversing Asia on dozens of assignments, photographing the people, the lands, and unique cultures. His whole career has been spent portraying the authentic Asia, from Japan to Indonesia, and from Turkey to China.

Whether you are an emerging photographer or a professional, these workshops will give you the opportunity to work closely with Mike and other experts who know how to produce shots with impact, compose photo essays that tell a story; and show you how to raise your own level of image making.

From secrets of remote lighting to street photojournalism and landscape photography techniques, Yamashita Authentic is designed for small groups of 10 to 20 participants, ensuring that you get the maximum amount of guidance from Mike, while experiencing an authentic Asian experience.

The Enigmatic Faces of Bayon Temple, Michael Yamashita

The Enigmatic Faces of Bayon Temple, Michael Yamashita

Yamashita Authentic in Laos: 30 August – 7 September 2014

Join veteran National Geographic photographer Mike Yamashita on a workshop in Laos, the enigmatic Land of a Million Elephants. This handcrafted itinerary will take photographers to off-the-beaten-track locations and offer a unique insight into the life of a world-renowned professional photographer. Luang Prabang oozes class and old world charm, it’s a living, breathing museum with its gleaming temple roofs and crumbling French architecture and deserves its World Heritage status as one of the most atmospheric cities in the whole region. We delve into some of its 32 stupa-studded pagodas like Wat Xieng Tong and the Royal Palace Museum, we take a boat upriver to river to visit the massive collection of Buddhas in the Pak Ou Caves and enjoy a relaxing day in the turquoise waters of the Kuang Si Falls. Beyond Luang Prabang, we venture into the countryside around Nong Khiaw and Muong Ngoi Neua, an area of poetic landscapes and timeless traditions. Mike has teamed up with Lonely Planet author Nick Ray, location scout and manager for countless film and television shoots in the Mekong region to ensure an original experience in Laos.

Monk at Wat Xieng Thong, Luang Prabang, Michael Yamashita

Monk at Wat Xieng Thong, Luang Prabang, Michael Yamashita

Yamashita Authentic in Cambodia: 7 – 14 September 2014

This unique photographic workshop brings veteran National Geographic photographer Michael Yamashita back to the majestic temples of Angkor to share his skills and knowledge. This is no ordinary Angkor experience as Michael takes photographers deep into the Cambodian countryside to discover traditional villages, floating communities on the Tonle Sap Lake and some of the more remote temples around Angkor. The itinerary has been carefully crafted to avoid the crowds that now flock to Angkor, but the iconic monuments are all here, including: Angkor Wat, the world’s largest religious building; the surreal and strange faces of the Bayon; and the jungle ruin of Ta Prohm. Starting early, we concentrate on temple photography for sunrise and early morning light. During the day photographers will enjoy feedback on their photographs and one-on-one sessions with Michael and tips and techniques around the temples. In the afternoons, we switch to lifestyle and capturing some of Cambodia’s incredible countryside and lifestyle. Michael has teamed up with Lonely Planet author Nick Ray, location scout and manager for countless film and television shoots around the temples to ensure that we have a unique encounter with Angkor.

For more details on these unique trips, visit http://yamashitaauthentic.asia/

Tonle Sap Lake, near Siem Reap, Michael Yamashita

Tonle Sap Lake, near Siem Reap, Michael Yamashita

Angkor at leisure

Sunday, April 6th, 2014

Visit Cambodia’s Angkor Temples from your armchair. 

Google Street View at Angkor

Google Street View at Angkor

You can now visit Angkor from the comfort of your own living room thanks to the innovative Google Street View. Following in the footsteps of the Taj Mahal, the Grand Canyon and Mount Fuji, Angkor has now received the Google treatment using a new device called Trekker. Fifteen digital cameras are attached by a long pole to a backpack, and each one records a 75 million mega pixel photo every two and a half seconds. By walking around the Angkor Wat temple complex, they are able to photograph areas that Google’s Street View cars cannot reach. For this latest project, five local men were tasked with trekking around the temples for up to eight hours a day, to record what many people say is the eighth wonder of the world. It’s a great addition to the wealth of online information about Angkor, though nothing beats actually being there yourself. More at https://www.google.com/maps/views/streetview/angkor?gl=us.

Hotel of the Week – Tara Angkor

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014
Tara Angkor Hotel at Siem Reap

Tara Angkor Hotel at Siem Reap

Hanuman’s Hotel of the Week is the stylish and contemporary Tara Angkor Hotel, which is located on the main road to the Temples of Angkor in Siem Reap. With a selection of suites and family rooms, it boasts 206 rooms with two restaurants, the Tong Tara and Frangipani, swimming pool and jacuzzi, and all the modern amenities expected of a top rated 4-star international hotel. They offer cooking classes for guests and complimentary bicycles too.

Hanuman’s View: A contemporary hotel on the road to the temples, the Tara Angkor provides exceptional value for those seeking comfort and modernity, with a smart four-star trim throughout. The swimming pool and water features are a big attraction and the extensive number of rooms make it an ideal choice for groups. A smart choice.

Gems at Angkor

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Capturing the Angkor Temples for a jewellery commercial shoot.

Leading Hong Kong jewellery company Chow Tai Fook chose Cambodia for its latest commercial. Hanuman Films coordinated the shoot around the temples of Angkor and Siem Reap, including locations such as Ta Prohm, Bayon, Angkor Wat and the floating villages of the Tonle Sap Lake. The Hanuman team worked in partnership with Radical Media of London and have worked on several previous commercials with them, including Pepsi, TUI Travel and Cisco.

Temples of Angkor

Monday, March 17th, 2014

Join Hanuman Travel TV for a three minute look inside the Temples of Angkor, Cambodia’s favourite tourist destination.

Defining images of Angkor

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

Capture defining images from your visit to Cambodia’s jewel in the crown with two renowned photographers who specialize in Angkor, Eric de Vries and John McDermott.

An Angkor Child by Eric de Vries

An Angkor Child by Eric de Vries

 Getting tuition from a photography expert can mean the difference between a bunch of nice holiday snaps or treasured memories you’ll be proud of for years to come. With Eric de Vries, you can choose from a 3 or 4-day workshop around the iconic temples such as the Bayon, Angkor Wat, Preah Khan, Ta Prohm and Banteay Srei as well as a full day in the countryside and at one of the Tonle Sap Lake’s less crowded floating villages. Eric has been leading photography tours around Angkor and Cambodia for more than a decade and his workshops are for beginners or professionals, focusing on fine art or street photography styles. A long list of satisfied Hanuman guests can testify that time spent with Eric will make a real difference to your Angkor memories.

Or you can join acclaimed international photographer John McDermott for a day-long photographic workshop around the temples of Angkor. Famous for his haunting black and white images of the temples, he has been called the Ansel Adams of Angkor. The workshop will include an early visit to Angkor Wat, the fabulous Bayon and its colossal faces, Preah Khan, some of the smaller temples like Ta Nei and a sunset visit to a rural location at Phnom Krom. We recommend this tour for couples or a small group with a real passion for fine art photography and the opportunity to learn from an expert renowned for his iconic images of Angkor.

Contact Hanuman for more details of these photography workshops with Eric or John.

Adrenaline Angkor

Monday, February 24th, 2014

Seeking some excitement and adventure on your trip to Siem Reap and the wonderful temples of Angkor, then look no further than our 4-day Adrenaline Angkor program.

Quad-biking is a fun activity in Siem Reap

Quad-biking is a fun activity in Siem Reap

We begin Day 1 with a cycle ride to the Roluos Group of temples some fifteen kilometres east of Siem Reap and onto the floating village of Kompong Pluk, which we discover by boat. In the evening the fantastic modern circus of Phare! awaits us. A hike to see the riverbed carvings of Kbal Spean begins the next morning, followed by the petite and perfectly-formed temple of Banteay Srei and the educational Landmine Museum. We end the day with a sunset visit into rural Cambodia on quad-bikes. For Day 3, it’s an early start to catch Ta Prohm at its solitary best and then into the treetops surrounding Angkor to experience the adrenaline rush of the ziplines of the safety-focused Flight of the Gibbon. In the afternoon we get into the saddle for a four-legged tour of the countryside. Our final day will concentrate on the best of the temples of Angkor, an early-morning visit to Angkor Wat and a walk or cycle tour of the ancient city of Angkor Thom, with a hot-air balloon or helicopter flight sandwiched in between. Contact us at Hanuman for more details.