Ta Keo Temple is a distinctive and unfinished temple in the Angkor Archaeological Park near Siem Reap a short distance to the east of the more famous Angkor Thom temple. To visit Ta Keo Temple you need to buy a pass for the Angkor Archaeological Park which costs $37 for 1 day, $62 for 3 days and $72 for 7 days. The park, including Ta Keo Temple, is open to visitors from 05:30 until 18:00.
About Ta Keo Temple
Construction of Ta Keo Temple began during the reign of Khmer King Jayavarman V. Jayavarman V reigned from 968 to 1,001. Building is believed to have commenced in 975 when the King was 17 years old with the intention that Ta Keo Temple was to become the official state temple during the period of his reign. Construction of the temple stopped in 1,001 when Jayavarman V died. At this point in the construction work on the intricate carvings, which are a distinctive feature of major Khmer temples of the period, had only just commenced, Ta Keo Temple is unusual in this respect, with very few parts of the structure featuring the same level of embellishments as other nearby temples.
Ta Keo Temple is the first of the Khmer temples to be built entirely of sandstone. The structure is best described as a three tier pyramid, reaching a height of 22 metres above ground level making it one of the tallest temples in the Angkor Archaeological Park. The pyramidal design is intended to resemble Mount Meru, which in Hindu mythology is the home of the gods. The temple is surrounded by a moat which is also believed to have represented the seas which ancient Hindu scriptures say surround Mount Meru. The first tier of the temple is 122 by 106 metres wide surrounded by a sandstone wall with four gopura entrance towers aligned with each of the four cardinal points. The second tier consists of galleries opening inwards measuring 80 by 75 metres. There is a steep 14 metre rise to the upper most tier which features five towers, four at each corner of the platform and a taller tower in the centre. The central tower reaches 45 metres above ground level.
Location of Ta Keo Temple
Ta Keo Temple is located 12.5 km by road from Siem Reap Town.