Apsara Dancer - Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Apsara Dancer - Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Apsara Dancer - Angkor Wat, Cambodia


"The truest expression of a people is in its dance and in its music. Bodies never lie." -Agnes de Mille

Apsara dance is the traditional Cambodian dance that was practiced in the royal palaces. This traditional dance almost went extinct during the bloody reign of the Khmer Rouge.

The Khmer dance is characterized by intricate finger and body movements (i.e. flexibility) which usually convey a story or message.

What better way to understand Khmer history than photographing an apsara dancer at historical Angkor Wat. On this particular morning a celestial dancer descended from the clouds to be my model at the Bayon temple. I don’t what kind of story her fingers were telling me that morning, but I think it had to do with a gratuity.

Stay tuned for more of my adventures in Southeast Asia.

Happy Travels!

Text and photo copyright by ©Sam Antonio Photography

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Taken on: 19th May, 2012. Copyright: All Rights Reserved - See Sam Antonio Photography's page of Flickr

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Set in northwest Cambodia, Siem Reap is best known for being home to the incredible Angkor ruins, a sprawling World Heritage-listed complex of ancient temples with the magnificent Angkor Wat as the focal point.

While the Angkor park is surely one of the globe's most amazing historical sites, Siem Reap province is also home to an array of other ruins, such as Beng Mealea, Bantaey Srei, and the holy mountain Phnom Kulen. So if ancient temple ruins are your thing, this province -- an expansive piece of mostly flat land, covered in rice fields and brush -- must be explored fully. It runs along the north shore of the Tonle Sap, Cambodia's "Great Lake", and north to Oddar Meanchey province, where Pol Pot met his end. Few visitors get around to the fringes, even though they are becoming increasingly accessible after many improvements to Cambodia's roads.

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