Angkor temples a dog-free zone

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18 September 2006 (Independent Online) – Maybe I should an include a ‘bizarre and quirky’ tag. For the convenience of tourists, Angkor Wat is now a dog free zone! But, to be fair, the Cambodian government have also acknowledged that the site is a religious temple and the last I checked, the bringing of pets to any religious site is frowned upon in any culture.

Angkor temples a dog-free zone

Cambodian police have banned dogs from the kingdom’s Angkor Wat complex in a bid to give tourists visiting the famed temples an excrement-free experience, an official said Monday.

Dogs are not good for the places of worship, police official Tan Chay said, adding that the animals’ presence insulted the spirits of the dead.

“Angkor Wat was built by our previous kings and ancestors for worship, so bringing dogs into the temples insults our ancestors’ work,” he said.

Angkor burdened with influx of visitors, job seekers

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16 September 2006 (Xinhua) – Another report on the unsustainability of Angkor because of its sharply rising tourist numbers; one million visitors a year is painful to the environment – but the projected tourist numbers is two million! The boost in tourism has also seen a spike in population numbers in Siem Reap from people seeking to cash in on the tourist boom, further adding strain to the environment. But tourism is an important part of the Cambodian economy.

Angkor burdened with influx of visitors, job seekers

The ancient Angkorian ruins face the danger of destruction as in the past years millions of visitors and job seekers rushed into Siem Reap, where the temples and the infrastructure were just unable to accommodate their overflowing admiration and aspiration, the Cambodian Daily reported here on Saturday.

“We don’t have enough infrastructure to welcome mass tourism. We are not ready. If one million come a year, the environment will be destroyed very quickly,” the paper quoted Tep Vattho as saying. She headed the development department of the Apsara Authority, which was entrusted by the government to manage the Angkor Archeological Park.

Tourism is Cambodia’s second largest foreign currency generator and Angkor contributes the lion’s share of the income.

Angkor shortlisted for New 7 Wonders

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21 August 2006 (Press Release) – A worldwide search to name the new 7 wonders of the world reaches its final stage, reviewsing the final 21 candidates, of which Angkor in Cambodia is one.

New7Wonders Campaign to Visit All 21 Candidates

Over the next seven months, the New7Wonders World Tour, featuring a huge hot-air balloon and a high-tech airship, will visit the 21 finalist monuments, allowing them to showcase their cultural significance. During the ceremony, an official certificate will be presented to each candidate.

In October, the World Tour visits Germany’s Neuschwanstein Castle on the 4th, the Eiffel Tower on the 10th, England’s Stonehenge on the 17th and the Alhambra in Granada, Spain on the 24th, moving to the Great Wall of China in Beijing on Nov. 7, Kyoto’s Kiyomizu Temple on the 14th, the Sydney Opera House on the 21st and Cambodia’s Angkor Wat on the 28th, followed by the Taj Mahal on Dec. 5.


Related Books:
Angkor Cities and Temples by C. Jaques
The Treasures of Angkor: Cultural Travel Guide (Rizzoli Art Guide) by M. Albanese
Angkor and the Khmer Civilization (Ancient Peoples and Places) by M. D. Coe
Angkor: Cambodia’s Wondrous Khmer Temples, Fifth Edition by D. Rooney and P. Danford
Angkor: Celestial Temples of the Khmer by J. Ortner et al
Angkor Wat: Time, Space, and Kingship by E. Mannikka

Climate change could have killed Angkor

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22 July 2006 (Australian Broadcasting Corporation, citing Reuters; also featured in other news media) – A new hypothesis presented at an international conference on Angkor posits that climate change led to the relatively fast depopulation and abandonment of Angkor.

ABC, 22 July 2006

Climate change could have killed ancient city

A Sydney conference has heard that climate change led to the fall of the ancient Cambodian city of Angkor.

The theory has been presented to an international gathering under the patronage of UNESCO.

Associate Professor Fletcher believes the medieval mini ice age caused climatic instability that lead to water and sediment overwhelming Angkor’s delicately balanced infrastructure.


Related Books:
Uncovering Southeast Asia’s Past: Selected Papers from the 10th International Conference of the European Association of Southeast Asian Archaeologists by E. A. Bacus, I. Glover and V. C. Pigott (Eds)
Angkor and the Khmer Civilization (Ancient Peoples and Places) by M. D. Coe
The Civilization of Angkor by C. Higham
The Archaeology of Mainland Southeast Asia: From 10,000 B.C. to the Fall of Angkor by C. Higham

After ‘Angkor Wat’ Archeological Survey of India gets restoration work of ‘Ta Prohm’ temple in Cambodia

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17 July 2006 (Press Information Bureau of India, and thereafter released on several Indian news sources) – New conservation project awarded to the Archaeological Survey of India for another Cambodian Temple.

After `Angkor Wat’ Archeological Survey of India gets restoration work of `Ta Prohm’ temple in Cambodia

After the successful completion of the Angkor Wat Project in Cambodia, the Cambodian Government has now assigned to the Archeological Survey of India another important project for restoration, the famous 12th Century “ Prasat Ta Prohm” Temple complex, built by King Jayavarman VII. The progress on this project was reviewed today by the Minister of Tourism & Culture, Smt. Ambika Soni and Minister of Tourism of Cambodia, Mr. Lay Prohas during a luncheon meeting, here today. The lunch was hosted by Smt. Soni in honour of the visiting dignitary.

The restoration work of Ta Prohm Temple complex, which is also situated in the Angkor Region and ranks high amongst the most important monuments of that area, is quite a challenging task as about 150 huge trees are growing in the complex and some of them are growing over the structures. Roots have penetrated the foundation and dislodged the stones of walls, vaults, towers etc.

Invasion, genocide; and now the tourist hordes

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9 July 2006 (Sunday Herald) – A report on the tourism industry in Cambodia, particularly how Angkor is a major draw for tourists and the related problems that come with it.

Invasion, genocide … and now the tourist hordes

Dougald O’Reilly, of Heritage Watch, says: “Archaeological tourism is, potentially, this ravaged country’s economic salvation. The temples of Angkor are still the primary destination of most tourists, but more and more people are starting to venture out to Cambodia’s more remote archaeological sites. As they do so there is an increasing danger that those temples which have survived years of abandonment, war and looting do not survive their own popularity.”

Groups such as Heritage Watch have proved effective campaigners, appealing to tourists not to buy artifacts, persuading the government to protect Cambodia’s past, and using superstition as an effective weapon. A comic book distributed to villages last year tells the story of farmers who dig up an ancient site in search of treasure. Their animals sicken and die and ghosts plague them. The book, with a cover picture of a skeleton on a phantom horse rearing over petrified treasure seekers, has apparently been quite successful in getting its message across.


Related Books:
Angkor Cities and Temples by C. Jaques

Are the Angkor Wat temples doomed?

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30 June 2006 (Independent Online) – John Stubbs of the World Monuments Fund talks about the dire need for preservation works at the Angkor temples, and how tourism is leading to quick destruction of the site.

Are the Angkor Wat temples doomed?

Such an increase in traffic is something the ancient sandstone structures are ill-equipped to cope with, according to John Stubbs, vice-president for field projects with the World Monuments Fund. A not-for-profit conservation organisation based in New York, the WMF was founded in 1965 with, says Stubbs, a simple mandate: to raise public awareness and save significant historic buildings throughout the world.

The WMF oversees 250 projects in 83 countries, preserving significant sites from the ravages of time. And Angkor Wat is on the critical list. Phnom Bakheng, a five-tier temple perched on a 65m-high hill, is one of the most imperilled of the 40 or so monuments in the area. The most prominent feature for several miles, Phnom Bakheng at sunset is regarded as the quintessential Angkor experience. And therein lies the problem.

On the plains of Cambodia

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30 June 2006 (The Hindu) – Travel piece on the Angkor temples in Cambodia.

On the plains of Cambodia

It is an incredible sight to see the temples on the plains of Cambodia. These 100 or so temples were built when Hindu kings reigned over a period of time from the 9th to 13th century. These magnificent temples were constructed out of stones, which were reserved for the gods while the people dwelt in houses made of wood and mud.

Shadows of a lost empire

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25 June 2006 (Contra Costa Times) – A travel piece on visiting the Angkor Archaeological Park.

Shadows of a lost empire

TWO THINGS YOU NEED when exploring the ancient city of Angkor in Cambodia: First — hire a quick-witted guide who can snake you in and out of temples without getting tangled with tour bus crowds.

The other must-have is a swimming pool. Cambodia is one hot little country and even the most intrepid temple prowler will want to slide into cool water after poking around the tumbled ruins of these looming structures of the ancient Khmer empire.

Part of ancient Cambodian temple opens to public as restoration drags on

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16 July 2006 (Canoe) – More news on the reopening of the partially-restored Baphuon temple.

Part of ancient Cambodian temple opens to public as restoration drags on

An initial attempt to refurbish the monument, one of the oldest and largest temples at the famed Angkor complex, started in 1960, but work stopped a decade later as Cambodia slid into a long civil war, and during the Khmer Rouge regime all the reconstruction plans were destroyed.

Work resumed 11 years ago and, now, for the first time, one section – known as the eastern pavilion – has opened to the public. A team of French archaeologists, funded by the French government, hopes to complete the $5.7-million US project in 2009

Categories: Angkor Cambodia

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