Rediscovered Memories – Ta Prohm, Cambodia

I was overjoyed yesterday when I accidentally discovered my Angkor Wat photos which I thought were lost for the last six years.

We took a trip to Angkor Wat in March 2007 and were totally fascinated by what we saw.

One of the places we stopped by was Ta Prohm, a beautiful temple built in Bayon style in the 12th and 13th centuries and has been left pretty much the same condition which it was found. However, this temple has been taken over by large trees and their massive roots, making it pretty dang cool looking.

The large tree shown in the photo is the silk-cotton tree. This temple has been used as a location for the film Tomb Raider. The photogenic and atmospheric combination of trees growing out of the ruins and the jungle surroundings have made it one of Angkor’s most popular temples with visitors.

Angkor scholar Maurice Glaize observed, “On every side, in fantastic over-scale, the trunks of the silk-cotton trees soar skywards under a shadowy green canopy, their long spreading skirts trailing the ground and their endless roots coiling more like reptiles than plants.DSC_0220

The image was taken using a Nikon D40 entry level DSLR camera which came to the market just a few months before the trip. I must say it is not of the best quality but it does show  the temple’s details and the eerie qualities.

104 thoughts on “Rediscovered Memories – Ta Prohm, Cambodia

  1. I am amazed at the extent of your travels and the catalog of interesting photos. Thanks for sharing with the rest of us.

  2. Love the photo and your English is marvelous! Like that you said “pretty dang cool looking.” You sound like a natural…which is pretty dang cool 🙂

    • I was looking hard for other things (which I still couldn’t find) and it really was a surprise to fine them! Thank you for the kind comment 🙂

    • I have now made copies of the photos! There are other interesting photos which I will share when I get them organized. Thank you for the kind comment 🙂

  3. I remember seeing this in Tomb Raider! Sooo creepy and beautiful at the same time! By the way, I think your entry level camera took a fantastic shot! Maybe I’m too much of a novice but I’m very impressed 🙂 Can’t wait to hear about your travels!

    • The problem with this camera was that it has only got 6 Mp; it was new and I wasn’t used to shooting with it. As you can see, the resolution of the photo is low and overexposed in part. Anyway, thank you for the kind comment 🙂

    • I hope, one day, to be a little bit of a good photographer. My husband paid for classes as a Christmas gift but I’ve only attended one because that ONE class overloaded my brain! lol One day I’ll be able to recognize what you mean by over exposed, I promise. Right now, I see a beautiful and interesting photo. Anyway, you’re certainly welcome! Every compliment, you deserved 🙂

    • Hi, suggest just get a camera out and take as many shots as you like from different angles, at different daylight, zoom as necessary, change composition as appropriate. Delete all unwanted photos and remember what settings you used in taking the good photos. . . . you will learn without even taking a lesson; in any case, it was kind of your husband to offer you the lessons as a gift. Thank you for the perusal and comment 🙂

    • Thank you SO much for the advice! That’s pretty much what the instructor told me to do and I have tried. I need to spend more time, but thank you so much. I respect you as a photographer!

  4. It fascinates me how nature can adapt itself to anything… these trees probably wondered where all the rocks came from… this is a magnificent photo of nature reclaiming its own..

  5. I watched Tomb Raider and I remembered Angkor Wat. I also told myself I need to see it someday, will check if it’s been covered in My Twenty Wishes list…

    Thanks for the share and happy for you that you found your photos. Looking forward to more photos.


    • It is really a joy to find those photos. I have lost all other digital copies except this one which was hidden among printed photos that I took home from office on retirement! Thank you for the kind comment 🙂

  6. I was planning on getting to Cambodia this year, but looks like it’s not be. Congrats on recovering your pictures – I found some I thought lost from my first big overseas trip a couple of years later, and it was such a thrill going through them again!

    • Many years ago, I used to make two copies of my photos on DVD. I know I have definitively thrown one copy away to save space. I was never able to find the other copy until yesterday when I was looking for other things. As you said, it was a thrill to go over them and re-live the memories of the trip! Thank you for the kind comment 🙂

  7. So glad you found your photos of this incredible place. We were there a couple of years ago and I loved photographing the details of the trees growing all over the Wat. It was amazing to see. Great photo!

  8. I’m lucky enough to have traveled throughout Asia. If I was in Hong Kong, I think I would have to make trips to Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Malaysia as much as possible, My favorite country Myanmar.

  9. Ta Prohm was my favourite of the temples I visited in 2005. We had gone ‘against’ the tourist route – which typically starts with Angkor Wat for sunrise, followed by Bayon… ending at Ta Prohm, and were there early in the morning when there was nary anyone. The morning dew was still on the leaves… what a beautiful and surreal moment…

  10. Why isn’t it the best quality? I think it looks wonderful . It’s unbelievable that the tree is taking over like that. We have Banyan trees that shoot out roots like that. I wonder if it’s in the same family. Beautiful photo …

    • I think the picture composition is OK. The problem with the camera was that it has only got 6 Mp; it was new and I wasn’t used to shooting with it. As you can see, the resolution of the photo is low and overexposed in part. Banyan trees have air roots, they are also aggressive in penetrating. Although, I doubt they are of the same family. Anyway, thank you for the kind comment 🙂

  11. That is some powerful old tree … I think I have seen some photos of yours with it before. Nature is very powerful. It’s like looking at a horror movie …

    • Hi Viveka, this is the first time I have shown any Angkor Wat photos as I have lost those photos for years. You may want to see Tomb Raider! Thank you for the perusal and comment 🙂

    • Michael, maybe it wasn’t you – but I have seen that tree before … taken over the temple …so sure it was yours.
      Must have been somebody else – saw it last year. Can only be one tree like that. *smile

    • I am very happy to have found these photos; especially now that I can share them through blogging. Sad to say, my other non-digital photos of my past trips are gone forever. Thank you for the perusal and comment 🙂

  12. What an architectural legacy they’ve left for us. I’ve seen a few amazing documentaries on Angkor Wat and always enjoyed the history. Lucky for you to have traveled there. Glad you found your lost photo’s Michael.

    • Hi Boomdeeadda, I have longed to visit Angkor Wat and finally made it in 2007 but thought I have lost all photos. It was a joy to find and share them. Thank you 🙂

  13. I imagine that you let out a cheer when you found the “lost” photos! Your apology for the quality of the photos isn’t necessary, because they are nice images. It is interesting, though, how much camera technology has improved in a relatively short time. You mentioned that the entry-level Nikon had a 6 mp capability in 2007. Nikon recently came out with a DSLR for enthusiastic beginners that is 24 mp!

    Your advice to get out the camera and just try a variety of settings — play with it, so to speak — is good. In the old days of film cameras, that approach could get expensive, but with digital, you can simply delete the experiments that didn’t work.

    Thanks again for sharing your passion for travel that combines with your love of photography.

    • Hi Tom, very valid comments. Sony even came up with a 24Mp RX1 full frame which is very compact. Up to an extent, images can be more easily improved by having large aperture lenses than having bigger processor. You are absolutely right, with film cameras, I did not take that so many photos as they were expensive and you don’t know the results until they are developed. I am glad to be able to combine my passion for travels with my love for photography. Thank you for the perusal and kind comment 🙂

  14. We spent the days surrounding this past New Years in Angkor and were blown away by it. We arrived at 4:30am each day and still had to fight to get away from the crowds…. I really like the shots you got while there!

    • We were there in March and the weather was terribly hot; supposedly that turned off some tourists away. Usually we left by 5:00pm and therefore we did not have any chance of taking any good sunset photos. Many thanks for your encouraging comment 🙂

  15. Nice to come across your wordpress. It’s full of peace.
    One of my best friends lived is living in Cambodia and sent me a postcard with this exact picture.

    Hope you can ever visit Lisbon, it’s a inspiring city in a very different way.

    All the best for you,

    • Hi Mariana, I visited Lisbon and like the place very much, especially the old city and also Sintra, further away. Unfortunately, I have lost all photos of Lisbon. Hope someday, I will revisit it again. Have a great weekend 🙂

  16. Great photo’s Michael, I think you have inspired a lot of people to see the temples of Angkor and especially Ta Prohm which I think is always great to see first thing in the morning while the rest of the tourist grounds cram in to Angkor Wat.

    There are also a few great resident photographers in Siem Reap that take you round the temples to get the best light etc… we are lucky to have 2 on our books.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.