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Cambodia's Angkor Wat bans 'inappropriate' clothing
Posted on 11/07/2016


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Authorities will now restrict tourists with uncovered knees or shoulders from entering the important Buddhist site.

Cambodia's famous Angkor Wat temple complex has become the first in the country to issue a stricter dress code for visitors. Beginning next month, the park's governing body said that tourists with uncovered knees or shoulders would be restricted from accessing the temples, which are considered an important pilgrimage site by Buddhists.

Crack down on 'revealing' clothes

Crack down on 'revealing' clothes
© iStock.com / f9photos

Apsara Authority, which manages the park, said that the ban would be enforced from August 4. It comes after several incidents of foreign visitors taking nude photographs at the site caused outrage across the country.

"Wearing revealing clothes disrespects the temple's sanctity," said Apsara spokesman Long Kosal.

"We will not allow [tourists] to buy a temple pass if they wear revealing clothes. Our officials will inform them what they should wear to be able to visit our ancient temples, so they can come back to buy a ticket later after they change their clothes."

Angkor Wat was the ancient capital of the Khmer Empire, which stretched across Cambodia and parts of modern-day Laos, Thailand and Vietnam from the 9th to the 15th century. It remains a popular spiritual site and pilgrimage destination for Buddhists.

The park authority also released a series of photographs showing instances of tourists wearning unsuitable clothing on visits to the site. Visitors wearing anything "too short - so they reveal buttocks - or not wearing bras, or T-shirts that show the back and upper body," will be asked to cover up before entering the site.

A poster produced by the campaign reads, "Any act of looting, breaking or damaging Angkor, or exposing sexual organs and nudity in public areas is a crime punishable by law."

In January 2015, three Frenchmen were arrested and later deported from the country after posing for naked photos at Banteay Kdei temple, one of the site's most visited spots. In the same month, a Chinese model also caused outcry amongst locals after she posed for a topless photo within the complex.

Shortly after the incidents Apsara Authority issued a new code of conduct for visitors, asking them not to climb on or touch the ruins, give money to begging children, or take selfies with the local monks.


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