The City of Angkor Thom
Angkor Thom was built in the late 12th century and covers an area of approximately 9 square km (3.4 square miles). It was a city that was the capital of the Khmer Empire and houses many other monuments within its boundaries.
Within Angkor Thom lies many of the most stunning monuments and temples within the park. The most famous is Bayon, which lies in the heart of the city, and includes spectacular stone faces.
Angkor Thom was built by King Jayavarman VII and was the centre piece of his building programme. The significance of the city to Jayavarman can be demonstrated by an inscription found within the city which refers to him as the groom and the city as his bride.
Main building work probably ended around 1295 but significant modifications continued for centuries.
It is believed that the city, at its height, was home to up to 150,000 inhabitants.
It is not know when Angkor Thom was abandoned, but it is likely to have been toward the end of the 16th century.
Surrounded by a moat with an 8 metre (26 feet) high boundary wall that stretches for 3 km (1.8 miles) in each direction.
The city has entrance gates on each side with an additional entrance, the Victory Gate on the eastern wall which leads to Thommanon, Chau Say Tevoda and Takeo outside of the city walls.
South of Angkor Thom lies Phnom Bakheng.
Within the walls, apart from Bayon, lies a number of significant sites of interest including Baphuon, Prasat Topwest, Terrace of the Elephants, Terrace of the Leper King and Tep Pranam.
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