Is it possible to pick the top 5 must see temples in Bangkok when there are 400 dotted all over the city? Possibly not. But with so many to choose from it can be hard to know where to begin. But here is a brief guide to help get you started.
- The Temple of the Emerald Buddha.
Any list of the top 5 temples in Bangkok will almost certainly include The Temple of the Emerald Buddha. Wat Phra Kaew as it’s also known is the most important Buddhist Temple in Thailand. The temple sits within the grounds of The Grand Palace, the official residence of the Thai royal family. The Emerald Buddha was made sometime in the 15th century although legend has it that it was created in the year 43 AD by a saint named Nagasena. Its stands at 26 inches tall and is such a revered relic that only the King is allowed to touch it. You can read about my visit to the temple here – https://pauldancewriter.com/2019/01/14/the-temple-of-the-emerald-buddha/
For more information on opeing times and dress codes follow the link below http://www.bangkok.com/attraction-temple/wat-prakaeo.htm
2. Wat Pho
Wat Pho or The Temple of the Reclining Buddha, as it’s also known, is located near the Temple of the Emerald Buddha and is easily in the top 5 must see temples in Bangkok. Wat Pho is one of Bangkok’s oldest temples and is the resting place of a 46 metre long Sleeping Buddha, the longest of its kind in Thailand. The temple is also considered the first public university of Thailand and was one of the first Thai massage schools. Massage courses are still held here and can last anything from a few weeks to a year.
For more information about Wat Pho follow the link – http://www.bangkok.com/attraction-temple/wat-po.htm
3. Temple of the Golden Mount
One of the most stunning temples in Bangkok is The Temple of the Golden Mount which sits on top of a low hill. The temple can trace its origins back to the Ayutthaya period and has a rather gruesome past. In the 18th century The Golden Mount was used as Bangkoks crematorium in which an estimated 60,000 bodies were burnt during an outbreak of bubonic plague. If you would like to know more about this gruesome episode of Bangkoks history follow the link below.
The temple sits at the top of a 300 step staircase but its a relatively easy climb and the views from the top are worth the effort!
For more information on The Golden Mount and location follow the link – http://www.bangkok.com/attraction-temple/wat-saket.htm
4. Wat Prayurawongsawat
You wont find Wat Prayurawongsawat on many lists about the top 5 must see temples in Bangkok which is a real shame but that also meansthere’s not many other tourists blocking that perfect Instagram moment. But this temple doesn’t make this top 5 because of its beautiful white Chedi but for ‘Turtle Mountain’ which sits inside Wat Prayurawongsasats grounds.
Turtle Mountain is one of the most peaceful places you’ll find in Bangkok. In the middle of the lush green garden is a moat with a minature temple complex on top of a man made hill. But not only is it the greenery and the surreal sight of the scaled down temple that makes this place unique, it’s also because it gets its name from its inhabitants – turtles. Turtles lounge around in the warm sun and are fed by the locals. The turtles arrive here from all over Bangkok and the place serves much like a dog kennels do for unwanted canines. A truly beautiful place that you should make time to visit. You can also buy food for the turtles from a stall that’s on site.
For more information about the temple and turtle mountain follow the link – https://www.watprayoon.com/main.php
5. Wat Paknam Phasi Charoen
The temple known as Wat Paknam Phasi Charoen is a royal temple built during the Ayutthaya period between 1488 and 1629. It sits in between two canals that merge into the Chao Phraya river but the main reason to visit the site is for the Great Pagoda or Maharatchamongkol as it’s also known. Cut entirely from glass and standing at almost 60 meteres high it’s an awe inspring sight. While this is a popular temple for many of the locals it is still relatively unknown and off the beaten track – a nice hidden gem and one of the most beautiful sights on Bangkok.
If you wish to know more about Wat Paknam follow the link to its Facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/WATPAKNAM.BKK/
Bangkok is home to so many beautiful temples so whichever ones you visit will stay in your memory for a long time.