via Thai PBS, 18 August 2022: A feature on the Sdok Kok Thom historical park, a major source of information of the Devaraja cult and the foundation of Angkor.
In the 1980s, the eleventh-century temple of Sdok Kok Thom in Sa Kaeo province wasn’t your typical tourist attraction.
Back then, this Hindu monument, an abode of Lord Shiva – theologically speaking – was Nong Samet, a camp for refugees fleeing Cambodia’s civil war. The ancient temple was in a terrible state, with pieces of laterite littering the ground and landmines buried all around the sanctuary. Tourism wasn’t an option. Those who came to Sdok Kok Thom were international workers from humanitarian agencies, warlords, gun runners, and black marketeers. Everyone gravitated to the “lawless” Nong Samet for their own business at the refugee camp.
Forty years later, everything has changed.
Today, Sdok Kok Thom is drawing small-time archaeologists, culture vultures, and even a princess to admire its beauty and significance.
Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn paid a visit to the Hindu monument in May for the Sdok Kok Thom Historical Park’s official opening ceremony. The painstaking restoration of the ancient temple is complete and the site now also boasts an exhibition center housing artifacts found during the excavation. If Sdok Kok Thom temple is good enough for the Princess to leave her royal palace, you can be sure that it is well worth setting off to Thailand’s eastern frontier and exploring the eleventh-century sanctuary.
Source: Sdok Kok Thom: Labours of love and hard work | Thai PBS World : The latest Thai news in English, News Headlines, World News and News Broadcasts in both Thai and English. We bring Thailand to the world
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