Prasat Suor Prat
“Temple of the Rope Dancers”
It is believed that ropes were attached to the towers of Prasat Suor Prat and some sort of overhead acrobatic display was performed. However, the origin of these 12 standing towers is puzzling and they remain a mystery to their purpose or why they were built; plus their architecture stands apart from what you would normally see in Angkor Thom Archaeology Park.
Prasat Suor Prat is a row of 12 towers (six on each side of the road) that have only 3 windows each – which is a mystery in its self and does not correspond with the usual architectural style of the Angkor period.
Normally the ancient Khmer’s including a least 4 windows in there structures to face north, south, east and west….so it is possible that these towers may have been built by someone else; or perhaps they stood on the site before the rise of the Angkor period.
Prasat Suor Prat spans north to south, lining the eastern side of Royal Square and overlooking the parade grounds. Constructed from sandstone, they are decorated with lions and Naga sculptures. This is a common theme throughout Angkor construction – but the 3 windows are baffling to many.
The towers are made from rugged laterite and sandstone with architecture that defies easy classification and dating – but it is said to have been constructed in the 13th century….but no one really knows for sure and only adds to the mystery.
These towers are in various states of preservation and whatever their purpose – they still stand tall and impressive. Several statues were said to have be found at the site during a later archaeological dig nearby…however, this still does not solve the riddle of these 12 mysterious towers.
TIP: The first tower is close to the Preah Pithu Group and not far to walk; but if you want to see the entire group make sure you have plenty of water, sunscreen and bug spray.
If you are coming to Siem Reap for the first time – you may be interested in out article Handy Information About Siem Reap For First Timers and Other Fun Things To Do In Siem Reap.