Visitors to Cambodia come from across the world to tour the Angkor Wat temple complex, which is the largest religious monument in the world and one of its great wonders. Angkor Wat is undoubtedly the crown jewel of the Angkor Archaeological Park, but it represents only a fraction of the architectural marvels left behind by the Khmer Empire.
Angkor Archaeological Park is vast — covering more than 150 square miles, including a forest — and there are too many temples to take in on a first visit. I toured five temples over the course of a few days, while squeezing in a sunrise hike and an elephant ride in the park. My favorite site of all was Bayon Temple, a Buddhist temple famous for its carved bas-relief faces. It seemed that as soon as I turned one corner, another smiling face would appear, pleasantly watching over me as I explored its 900-year-old ruins.