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Asia - Cambodia
09 June 2010

Temple at Ta Prohm overgrown with a spung tree (Tetrameles nudiflora)

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Ta Prohm might be one of the more spectacular sites in the Angkor kingdom, with hundreds of trees all over the ruins, their roots sometimes thicker than a man's waist. It should be high on every visitor's list.

Unlike other Angkor monuments, it has been completely swallowed by the jungle and looks the monuments were found when European explorers discovered them, apart from the fact that indeed some trees have been cut away and only some have been left. This means it doesn't have the raw character of Beng Mealea. Ta Prohm is a temple of towers, closed off courtyards and very narrow corridors, many of them not passable and blocked with marvelously carved stone blocks that have been slowly pushed out of place by the roots of long-decayed Tetrameles nudiflora trees.

An interesting detail is that the film Tomb Raider with Angelina Jolie was filmed here. One of the most famous places within the Ta Prohm site is the so-called 'Tomb raider tree' where Lara Croft picked a jasmine flower before falling through the earth...