Wat Phra Kaew

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Wat Phra Kaew or known otherwise as the “Temple of the Emerald Buddha” is perhaps one of the greatest spectacles for any visitor to Bangkok along with the adjacent Grand Palace. Even though a number of tourists can be a usual sight, it’s an amazing place you must visit if you happen to set foot in Bangkok. Once you’re at Wat Phra Kaew, you will see several colorful buildings, golden spires, and glittering mosaics dating back to 1782, the year Bangkok was founded.  

The construction of Wat Phra Kaew began in 1785 shortly after that of the Grand Palace. It was during this time that King Rama I, the first king of the current Chakri Dynasty was in his reign. Furthermore, King Rama I was the one who decided to move the capital of Thailand from Thonburi to Bangkok, and this is why a new palace was needed. The relocation of the capital marked the beginning of the Chakri Dynasty and the birth of Bangkok.  

Wat Phra Kaew houses Thailand’s most highly respected Buddha image, the Emerald Buddha. It was made way back in the 15th century and was the cause of several wars before ending up in Bangkok in 1782. The Emerald Buddha is thought to be Bangkok’s talisman with great significance for Thailand and the locals. Believe it or not, the 'robe' that it wears is changed 3 times each year by the King himself,

Despite its cultural and historical significance, Wat Phra Kaew is the only temple in Thailand that doesn't have any resident monks.

TakeMeTour's Review

Once you’re near the premises, don't listen to anyone telling you that it's closed for a “Buddhist holiday”, or that they’re “cleaning” the place. It's just all part of a sophisticated gem scam.

As Wat Phra Kaew is Thailand's most important temple, do dress appropriately. Avoid wearing shorts, sleeveless shirts, or any form of open-ended shoes. Sarongs and long trousers are usually available to borrow if you happen to dress inappropriately. 

Visit Wat Phra Kaew with a local