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Cambodia is popular among tourists for its gorgeous beaches, lush green forests, and the infamous Temple Angkor Wat. Beyond Angkor Wat, Cambodia has several historical attractions that tourists can explore to discover this evergreen country’s cultural tapestry. One of them is Srah Srang, located near the East Barray, an ancient reservoir amidst the grandeur of Angkor. Srah Srang Lake in Cambodia also known as the “Royal Bath” is surrounded by abundant greenery and serves as a picturesque sunrise spot for tourists. Make sure to add this ancient reservoir to your next trip to Cambodia.

Srah Srang History

Stunning view of Srah Srang Lake in Cambodia

Image Credit: Diego Delso for Wikimedia Commons

In the 10th century when Rajendravarman II was the King of the Khmer Empire, Kavindarimathana, a Buddhist minister, took the initiative to dig Srah Srang. This ancient reservoir was built to serve as a tank for rituals and ceremonies and functioned as a chapel to Kama, the God of love. Later, in the 12th Century when King Jayavarman VII took over the throne the reservoir underwent a serious renovation. As per an inscription the Srah Srang was not only built for religious activities but also to serve as a water storage to benefit all the living beings.

Must Read: Festivals In Cambodia

Srah Srang Architecture

Two lions standing guard at the Srah Srang Lake.

Image Credit: Diego Delso for Wikimedia Commons

Kavindarimathana, a Buddhist minister of Rajendravarman II, took the initiative to build the historical reservoir near Siem Reap, to provide water “for all the creatures” as quoted in the inscription. This ancient reservoir is now a famous tourist attraction in Cambodia. Surrounded by lush greenery, the design of the reservoir was inspired by Khmer-style architecture. The reservoir measures around 700 metres in length and 300 metres wide. The landing stage on the other side of Banteay Kdei offers a mesmerising sunrise spot. The reservoir has Naga balustrades where you will find a Garuda mounted with its wings expanded. As you come close to the steps that lead down to the water guarded by two lions.

Srah Srang Location And Timing

Sunset at Srah Srang Lake

Image Credit: Stefan Fussan for Wikimedia Commons

Srah Srang lies to the east of Banteay Kdei temple, flanked by Kutisvara temple to the northwest and Pre Rup to the east. You can either choose the grand circuit or the small circuit tour to reach the temple.

Srah Srang is open to visitors during the standard operating hours of the Angkor Archaeological Park, which is from 5 AM to 7 PM. Visitors often prefer to visit Srah Srang during the early morning or late afternoon to witness stunning sunrise or sunset views over the tranquil waters, creating a picturesque setting amidst the ancient ruins.

Suggested Read: Angkor Wat In Cambodia

Srah Srang In Cambodia: Nearby Attractions

Cambodia offers fabulous historical sites in addition to Srah Srang. Here is a list of places to explore on your next trip to Cambodia making it worthwhile while developing a deeper understanding of the cultural tapestry of Cambodia.

1. Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat is a must-see attraction near Srah Srang In Cambodia.

Image Credit:Diego Delso for Wikimedia Commons

Built during the 12th century by King Suryavarman II of the Khmer Empire. The Angkor Wat Temple is the most renowned in Cambodia because of the architectural brilliance of the architects of the Khmer Empire. Previously the temple was dedicated to lord Vishnu, but later transformed to a Buddhist site. You will be able to witness the efficient systems of artificial canals, dikes, and reservoirs which the temple is mostly recognized for. Besides its stunning architecture and most distinguished drainage system, the Temple has a spacious courtyard where you can sit and relax. This is a perfect spot for a History enthusiast.

2. Angkor National Museum

Sculptures at display inside Angkor National Museum, located near Srah Srang

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Located in Siem Reap, Angkor National Museum will surely take you back to the Khmer Civilisation. Inaugurated in 2007, the museum is spread over 20,000 square metres and preserves over 8000 relics, including statues of Buddhist and Hindu deities that date back to Khmer civilization. The Angkor National Museum has audio-visual multimedia, which will give you a glimpse of the golden era of the Khmer Empire. The museum has eight galleries displaying the museum’s permanent collections. The museum has an Audio guide available in 8 languages, costing you 3 dollars. Make sure to visit this Museum to understand the Khmer Empire better.

Suggested Read: Scuba Diving In Cambodia

3. Bayon Temple

The Front View of Bayon Temple

Image Credit: Angkor History & Culture for Facebook

Located at the centre of Angkor Thom, this unique temple was built between the late 12th Century and 13th Century and served as a state temple for the ruler King Jayavarman VII. The temple is widely recognized for its gigantic stone faces. You can find the stone faces on the temple towers, facing the compass’s cardinal directions. The Bayon temple is considered a centrepiece of Jayavarman VII’s monumental construction. The temple site has intricate bas-relief carvings as it displays a blend of scenes from history, mythology, and daily life.

4. Banteay Kdei

Carvings on the wall of Banteay Kdei

Image Credit: Diego Delso for Wikimedia Commons

Located in Angkor Archaeological Park, it is a lesser-known Buddhist Temple in Cambodia also known as the “citadel of monk’s cells”. Built by then-ruler King Jayavarman in the late 12th century, the temple offers a serene environment. Being in an uncrowded historical temple will give you a spiritual experience, you will also be mesmerised by the stunning sunrise spot from the nearby tourist attraction Srah Srang. Just like other temples in Cambodia are known for their architectural brilliance, Banteay Kdei’s architecture was inspired by Khmer architecture, but the architecture has deteriorated a lot.

Suggested Read: Places To Visit In Cambodia

5. Ta Prohm Temple

Inside Ta Prohm Temple in Cambodia

Image Credit: Jakub Hałun for Wikimedia Commons

Located in Angkor Archaeological Park, the temple is also known as “Rajavihara ” which means monastery of the kings. The Buddhist temple, King Jayavarman VII, was built in 1186 by the Khmer Empire and was dedicated to his mother. It is one of the unique Buddhist temples in the Angkor region where the inscription provides full information about the temple’s inhabitants and dependents. The temple provides a captivating experience to the tourists as the temple’s corridors are surrounded by silk-cotton trees. The Ta Prohm Temple gained a lot of attraction after the ancient temple was featured in “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider”. Make sure to check out this ancient Temple on your next trip to Cambodia.

How To Reach

Know how to reach Srah Srang in Cambodia

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Reaching Srah Srang in Cambodia is relatively straightforward, especially considering its proximity to the popular Angkor Archaeological Park. Here’s a step-by-step guide

Begin your journey by reaching Siem Reap, the gateway to the Angkor region. Siem Reap is well-connected by air, road, and even boat, depending on your starting point within Cambodia. Srah Srang is located within the Angkor Archaeological Park, which spans over 400 square kilometres. Entry to the park requires a valid ticket, which can be purchased at the main entrance gates. Consider obtaining a multi-day pass if you plan to explore the park extensively.
Once inside the Angkor Archaeological Park, you have several transportation options to reach Srah Srang:

  • Tuk-Tuk: These are a popular and convenient mode of transport within Siem Reap and the Angkor region. You can hire a tuk-tuk driver for a few hours or a full day to take you around the park, including Srah Srang.
  • Bicycle: Cycling is a great way to explore the Angkor temples at your own pace. Many rental shops in Siem Reap offer bicycles for daily or hourly rates.
  • Car or Motorbike: If you prefer more independence and flexibility, you can rent a car or motorbike in Siem Reap. But, remember you are allowed to take the car or motorcycle within the temple complex; there are designated areas to park them.

Further Read: Places To Visit In Siem Reap

Your trip to Cambodia isn’t complete without visiting the historical Srah Srang located in the heart of Angkor. Sarah Srang offers a serene environment with a stunning sunrise viewpoint. Beyond Srah Srang the Angkor Archeological Park has several ancient tourist attractions such as the infamous Angkor Wat, and Angkor National Museum where you can explore the golden era of the Khmer Empire. Add these places to your itinerary for the best trip of your life.

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Cover Image Source: Melancholia i for Wikimedia Commons

Frequently Asked Questions About Srah Srang

What is the best time to visit Srah Srang?

Srah Srang is known for the best sunrise viewpoint in Cambodia, it’s better to visit early in the morning to watch the sunrise.

Do you need tickets to visit Srah Srang?

For children under the age of 12, the entrance is free, adults need to buy tickets at Angkor Archeological Park to visit Srah Srang.

Is there any specific dress code for visiting Srah Srang in Cambodia?

Well, there is no specific dress code to enter the temple, but it is better to dress modestly and be respectful when visiting religious or historical sites.

How much time is needed to explore Srah Srang?

On average one hour is required to explore this ancient reservoir

What attractions can be found in the Angkor Archeological Park?

Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom are the two main attractions located within the Angkor Archeological Park.

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