What's the deal with the stairs that lead to nowhere in Cambodia?

When you go up a flight of stairs, you expect to get somewhere, right? After all, you do not make all that effort just for the sake of it. Unless you are an athlete or you work out. To not move away from the subject, it seems that not all stairs lead somewhere, and this stairway in Cambodia has made people go mental. Why? Because it is long, but when you reach the top, you cannot see a thing. You feel disappointment, and some regret that you made the effort of climbing it in the first place.
The stairway I am talking about is located in Phnom Kulen in Siem Reap, north of Angkor Wat. The staircase is 550 meters long, which is about a third of a mile. That may not seem much, but when you go up that distance, you will surely change your mind. The stairs are carved in laterite stone, and they were built somewhere between the ninth and the 13th century. By the looks of it, they withstood numerous generations, and while they do not look spectacular, kudos to the workers.

So what is the mystery?

Archaeologists have been studying the stairway for quite some time now, and the questions they cannot answer is who and why built it. They barely know the when, but anything other than that is unknown. Apparently, they think an influential leader commissioned the stairs because no one else would have a reason or the resources to. The French archaeologist named Jean Baptiste  Chevance, who is the Phnom Kulen program director for the Archaeology and Development Foundation said that ‘If you deploy so much labor to build such a feature, it’s coming from the top. It’s not just some local rich guy who built it.’ If you think about, what he said makes perfect sense. Why would some random person waste his resources to build some stairs? Stairs that lead nowhere, nonetheless.

What are the theories?

Since there are no carvings anywhere, archaeologists have no clues as to why the stairs were built. All that can be found are some resting areas, and they know that they had access to a source of water, a spring to be more precise. But they do not know anything else. That is why some theories were formed. None of them can be proven for now, but it is good to start somewhere, right?
One of the most appreciated theories is that the stairs lead to the ancient city of Mahendraparvata, a Khmer Empire stronghold that is supposed to have existed in the ninth century. The arguments supporting this theory are revealed by some aerial radar images. It seems that the lost city is a lot bigger than archaeologists initially thought, but we do not know anything more at the moment.
One unfortunate thing that happens with these stairs is that loggers still use them to carry logs down the mountain. The practice will eventually damage the stairs entirely, which is why we must find out why they are there, and we need to find out soon. Until then, we can just cheer on the archaeologists and historians.
The officials think that the site will become a lucrative tourist spot, which means that you can visit the stairs if you like. Keep in mind, however, that you need a visa to cross the border. Cambodia releases electronic visas. All you need is a passport and a few other things. The photos can be obtained online. It is pretty easy to get there, so what you are waiting for? Who knows? Maybe you will discover the mystery. If you do, just make sure to let us know.

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