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Boeng Mealea is another of the magnificent Khmer temples at Angkor, near Siem Reap in Cambodia that have the added attraction of being left almost "as found": showing their age and losing fight with nature .
Boeng Mealea (lotus pond) is a temple from the Angkor Wat period located 40 km east of the main group of temples at Angkor, Cambodia, on the ancient royal highway to Preah Khan Kompong Svay.
Boeng Mealea was built as a Hindu temple, but some carvings depict Buddhist motifs. Its primary material is sandstone and it is largely unrestored, with trees and thick brush thriving amidst its towers and courtyards and many of its stones lying in great heaps. For years it was difficult to reach, but a road recently built to the temple complex of Koh Ker passes Boeng Mealea and more visitors are coming to the site, as it is 77 km from Siem Reap by road.
The history of the temple is unknown and it can be dated only by its architectural style, identical to Angkor Wat, so scholars assumed it was built during the reign of king Suryavarman II in the early 12th century. Smaller in size than Angkor Wat, the king's main monument, Boeng Mealea nonetheless ranks among the Khmer empire's larger temples. The gallery which forms the outer enclosure of the temple is 181 metres by 152 metres. It stood in the centre of a town and was surrounded by a 45 metre wide moat measuring 1025 metres by 875 metres.