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Bangkok Wats and Temples

Thailand is a country world famous for its temples and many are situated in the hustle and bustle of Bangkok. Wat is the Thai name for a temple in Thailand so use that in front of the name of the temple if you are looking for a particular place. There are two main types of temples in Thailand, ones that perform religious functions and those that are quarters for practising monks. A trip to Bangkok is not complete without a visit to the magnificent Wat Arun (beautiful at both sunrise and sunset) and the Emerald Buddha at Wat Phra Keo to get a real taste of the history and religion of the Thai people. A dress code needs to be observed to respect the Thai culture and temples or you may not even be allowed to enter. Everybody is expected to treat wats with the highest respect in Thailand, and quite rightly so. For further information on the dress code for visiting a wat please visit our Customs and Etiquettes section.

Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn)

This famous Chao Phraya riverbank landmark diagonally opposite the Grand Palace, is best known for a porcelain encrusted 79 metre central pagoda which sparkles in the sun. The temple can be reached either by Arun Amarin Road or by boat from Tha Tian Pier near Wat Pho.
Open: Daily from 7.30 a.m.-5.30 p.m.
Admission: 20 baht
Tel: 02 465-5640
www.watarun.org

Wat Benchamabophit

Located on Si Ayutthaya Road, this unique marble temple was constructed during the reign of King Rama V. It employs European ecclesiastic details, such as stained glass windows, and contains a superb cloister collection of bronze Buddha images.
Open: Daily from 8 a.m.-5.30 p.m.
Admission: 20 baht
Tel: 02 281-2501, 02 628-7947

Wat Bowon Niwet

This temple is located on Phra Sumen Road in the Bang Lamphu area. Built in 1829, it is the shrine-hall of Phra Phutthachinnasi, a very beautiful Buddha image which was moulded in about 1357. This is one of the most important temples of Bangkok, whose one-time chief abbot was King Rama IV before he ascended the throne. King Rama IV and King Rama VII, as well as His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej had resided here during their monk hood.
Open: Daily from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Tel: 02 281-2831-3

Wat Intharawihan

Located on Wisutkasat Road, this temple is well known for a huge standing Buddha image called Luang Pho To. The image, built in the reign of King Rama IV, is 32 metres tall and 10 metres wide. The topknot of the Buddha image contains a relic of Lord Buddha brought from Sri Lanka.
Open: Daily from 8.30 a.m.-8 p.m.
Admission: Free
Tel: 02 628-5550-2

Wat Mahathat

This old temple was built in the reign of King Rama I. Located on Na Phrathat Road near Thammasat University, the temple houses Mahachulalongkorn Buddhist University, one of the two highest seats of Buddhist learning in Thailand and also offers meditation classes for foreigners.
Open: Daily from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Tel: 02 222-6011, 02 222-8004; Meditation Centre Tel: 02 623- 6326

Wat Pho

This large and extensive temple neighbours the Grand Palace enclave on Thai Wang Road and contains a gigantic gold plated Reclining Buddha some 46 metres long and 15 metres high with inlaid mother of pearl soles. The temple is also regarded as the first centre of public education and is sometimes called ‘Thailand’s first university’.
Open: Daily from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: 20 baht
Tel: 02 222-0933
www.watpho.com

Wat Ratchabophit

The temple is located on Fuang Nakhon Road near Wat Pho. Built by King Rama V in 1869, it was in keeping with tradition that each monarch constructed a temple to mark his reign. The temple is a mixture of local and western styles, showing an awakening interest in new ideas and a desire to experiment with them. The exterior of the chapel is in the Thai style, but the interior is decorated in the European style.
Open: Daily from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Tel: 02 222-3930, 02 221-0904

Wat Trai Mit

Located at the end of Chinatown’s Yaowarat Road near Hualamphong Railway Station, this temple houses an ancient solid gold seated Buddha image of the Sukhothai Period, three metres in height and weighing five and a half tons.
Open: Daily from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: 20 baht
Tel: 02 225-9775

Wat Saket and The Golden Mount

Wat Wat Saket’s major feature is the Golden Mount, dating from the 1800s. A Lanka-style chedi on the top contains relics of Lord Buddha and offers a panoramic view of historic Bangkok.
Open: Daily from 8 a.m.-5.30 p.m.
Admission: 10 baht
Tel: 02 621-0576

Wat Ratchanatdaram

Located on Mahachai Road, the temple was built in the reign of King Rama III in 1846. Loha Prasat, the temple’s main attraction, standing 36 metres high with 37 surrounding spires, is the only one of its kind left in the world. Next to the temple is the area for welcoming an important foreign guest and a memorial statue of King Rama III.
Open: Daily from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Tel: 02 224-8807, 02 225-5749

Wat Thepthidaram

Located on Mahachai Road, the temple was built in the reign of King Rama III with a mixture of Chinese architectural styles. Sunthon Phu, one of Thailand’s greatest poets, had resided in this temple during his monk hood from 1840-1842.
Open: Daily from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: Free
Tel: 02 222 5067

Wat Suthat and The Giant Swing

Located on Bamrung Muang Road, this temple is noted for its superb 19th century murals in the main chapel. The distinctive Giant Swing outside the temple was once used in Brahmanic ceremonies long since discontinued. Nearby shops stock a very comprehensive range of Buddhist religious supplies.
Open: Daily from 8.30 a.m.-9 p.m.

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