The Preah Vihear temple is an outstanding masterpiece of Khmer architecture built during the Khmer Empire located between Thailand and Cambodia, near Sisaket’s Kantharalak. Since November 11, 2013 the temple is located in Cambodian territory.

Preah Vihear temple is a Hindu temple built during the reign of Khmer Empire, on the edge of a plateau that dominates the plain of Cambodia, the Temple of Preah Vihear is dedicated to Shiva. This ancient temple, sits atop of a 525-metre cliff in the Dângrêk Mountains. The temple is located in the boundaries of Khao Phra Wihan National Park in Kantharalak, Sisaket province, Thailand, however in June 2011, and after years of disputes, the UNESCO decided to accept Cambodia’s management proposal for the temple and an UN court granted sovereignty over Preah Vihear.

In 1962, following a lengthy dispute between Thailand and Cambodia over ownership, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague awarded the temple to Cambodia.

On July 7, 2008, the World Heritage Committee added Prasat Preah Vihear to the World Heritage Site list. On November 11, 2013 the United Nations International Court of Justice ruled that Cambodia has sovereignty over the territory of the Preah Vihear temple.

Currently Preah Vihear cannot be visited from the Thai side, and tourists must cross the border into Cambodia. Anyway Thailand has dozens of Khmer temples even more spectacular than Preah Vihear.

Photos courtesy of William Brehm.

© www.adventureinthailand.com

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