Banteay Srei

  Landmarks

Banteay Srei or ‘Citadel of Women’ is a 10th century Hindu temple complex dedicated to Shiva, the ‘destroyer’ in the Hindu Trinity. Miniature in scale compared to other Angkor structures, the buildings are intricately carved from red sandstone, earning them the sobriquet 'precious gem' and a 'jewel in Khmer art'.

The site has three concentric rectangular enclosures, with the gopuras or entrances oriented east. The inner enclosure contains the sanctuary, consisting of an entrance chamber and three towers, as well as two libraries. The eastern pediment of the east gopura shows Shiva Nataraja, and the south library's pediments both depict Shiva - on the east Ravana shakes Mount Kailash with Shiva atop, and on the west, Kama the God of Love shoots an arrow at him. The north library's pediments feature Indra creating rain to put out a forest fire started by Agni to kill a naga, and Krishna helping Agni by firing arrows to stop the rain. The Banteay Srei is one of the earliest Khmer temples with scenes from mythology featuring on the walls. The stunning interiors also feature apsaras, devatas and dvarapalas.

A guided tour of Banteay Srei will give you a good overview of the different elements of this architectural gem and its construction. You can combine it with a tour of the neighboring Angkor temples.

Banteay Srei and Nearby Attractions on Map

10 Banteay Srei Tickets and Tours in Siem Reap

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