Shooting Angkor at Sunrise

Angkor Wat at Sunrise

The Angkor group of temples - the unmatched travel destination, is visited by more than two million tourists every year. Obviously, the Angkor group is the most photographed location. One feature of photographing the temples is shooting the Angkor Wat at sunrise. The silhouette of five spires and their golden hour reflection in the front pool makes it a surreal experience for a photography enthusiast. Shooting Angkor Wat at sunrise has become a part of the itinerary of almost every tourist.

You have to get up early in order to get a good spot to fix your tripod on. Those in the first row along the pond have the best chance of an uninterrupted photo session with the rising Sun. However, with the ever increasing tourist traffic there is no guarantee that someone will not disturb your tripod or poke a selfie stick right in front of your nose when you are about to catch the moment.

The morning I visited, there were approximately one thousand people waiting for the sunrise. There are no lights in the Angkor temples. Tourists have to walk around 500 metres in darkness to reach the pond edge. It is advisable to carry a small torch if your cellphone doesn’t have one.  

The Chinese are the worst tourists lacking etiquette and decency. They will just push others around and jostle to go in front. They don’t speak English and always yell at each other. They are noisy everywhere, be it a hotel lobby, a restaurant, or a tourist spot. And they don’t seem to care about discomfort or displeasure of others because they simply don’t look towards you after an offence.