The temple of Phimeanakas is a pyramid-shaped temple, which was probably built in the 11th century by Suryavarman I. The Phimeanakas is twelve meters high and has a base of 36 by 28 meters. The basic pyramid consists of laterite rock; the structures were built of sandstone. Chinese envoy Zhou Daguan reported that the temple was made of gold, so it is believed that at least the dome was covered with gold.
You can reach the temple by climbing the central staircase of the Elephant Terrace and continuing east past the Gopuram of the Royal Palace. The four axial stairs are incredibly steep. On the stair string cheeks are lions, and at the corners, elephants can be recognized.
The name Phimeanakas is a corruption of the Sanskrit words ‘Vimana’ – Palace of the Gods – and ‘Akasha’ – Heaven.