Banteay Chhmar



The archaeological site of Banteay Chhmar, Cambodia, 200 mi/320 km northwest of Phnom Penh was once a walled Buddhist capital. The highlight is an 11th-century monastery, located in the center of the site. Banteay Chhmar has suffered even more looting than Angkor, though the bas-reliefs that remain are as exquisite as those of Angkor Wat. This complex features several temples, and guides are easy to come by at the entrance (be sure to bargain). Unfortunately, many of its most prized carvings and statues have been damaged by looters in the past few decades. Travelers with a lot of time and a deep interest in Khmer history should visit, but casual tourists might want to spend their time elsewhere.

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