The terrace was once attached to the royal palace of Phimeanakas, right at the heart of the ancient Khmer capital city of Angkor Thom. While much of the original structure has long since rotted and collapsed, the terrace itself has survived relatively intact, and the carvings along its length are still quite clear.
At the Terrace of the Elephants you can see many bas-relief sculptures of elephants, horses, lions, dancers, and warriors. Garudas holding the terrace above them are carved into the main wall. One of the garudas tramples on a naga. Another scene shows an elephant fighting with a lion and further to the north you find a five-headed horse carved into the wall. On the surface of the terrace, you can still see the holes made for parasols which were used to give the King shade when he participated at the games and ceremonies.
The Terrace of the Elephants faces east, so the best lighting for photography is before noon. Interesting and photo-worthy features include the 5 outworks along its length, where you can see 3-dimensional elephant sculptures.
visit-angkor.org and vi.hotels.com