Friday, December 28, 2007

Wat Ratchanatdaram : Bangkok

Located on Mahachai Road. This royal temple was built in the reign of King Rama III in 1846. Loha Prasat (Metal Palace), one of its tourist attractions, standing on its 36 meters high with 37 surrounding spires is the only one of its kind left in the world. Situated in the nearby area are a royal pavilion for a guest welcome and the memorial statue of King Rama III.

Important Buildings in the Temple

The Ordination Hall

Parallel to the canal, this edifice built in the style of King Rama III's period. There are square pillars all around it. The gable is decorated with stucco.

The main Buddha image inside is cast of copper, mined at Chanteuk in Nakhon Ratchasima province. It was placed there in A.D. 1864 by order of King Rama III. King Rama IV gave the name "Phra Setthamuni" to the image.


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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Wat Ratchabophit : bangkok

[ photo credit to ]

This royal temple of the first grade stands is located near the Ministry of Interior. Its east side faces Fuangnakhon Road, the west side on Asadang Road near Khlong Lot, the north on Ratchabophit Road and the south of Wat Ratchabophit canel.

This temple was the last to be erected by King Chulalongkorn (King Rama V) . Later King Pokklao (King Rama VII) made it his task to restore this temple as if it was a temple of his reign.

Important Objects in the Temple

In this temple compound, all the buildings were erected on highly raised bases which are totally covered with marble; The Ordination Hall, Phra Chedi, the Wihan in front, the Circumambultory Gallery and small open pavilions which stand in row or on sides. All of these are within the surrounding wall one metre high decorated with glass tiles of five colours. His Royal Highness Prince Naris said that Phra Achan Daeng, a well known artist of King Rama's period, was the designer of these tiles which were made in China.

Open :
Daily from 8 a.m. to
5 p.m.

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Wat Benjamabophit ( Marble Temple ) : Bangkok

WAt Benjamabopit Dusitwanaram
(Wat Ben) , the Marble Temples, in located near Government House and the Equestrian Statue of King Rama IV. It is an old temple during from the Ayutthaya Period and was originally names Wat Laem or Wat Saithong. During the reign of King Rama IV, the temple was restored by five princes and renamed Wat Bejamabopit (five princes). In 1899 , King Rama V had the temple completely rebuilt and bestowed upon it the name Wat Benjamabopit Dusitwanaram , meaning the Temple of the Fifth King. He placed Prince Narissaranuwattiwong, the nation's chief architect, in change of the design and construction.

The name Marble Temple derives from the phra ubosot , which is square and completely covered with white marble . In it is enshrined a reproduction of the Phra Buddhachinarat image, which King Rama V had copied from the original in Phitsanulok Province.

[ Phra Buddhachinarat image ]

In the cloister extending from the north, around the west, to the south of the phra ubosot , there are 52 Buddha images of various styles and periods.

In the monastic residence area is a royal ordination hall, which was reconstructed there after having been moved from the Grand Palace. It was in this King Rama V lived when he entered the monkhood. The murals in this building are of historical interest, showing courtly customs and traditions during the reigns of King Rama IV and Rama V.

source: dhammathai

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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wat Suwandararam : Ayutthaya

Wat Suwandararam was built in very late Ayutthaya Period by the Father of King Rama I of Ratanakosin. The temple was then named "Wat Thong". The temple has been well looking after by the Kings of Rattanakosin Period.

In the ordination hall at Wat Suwandararam there are mural paintings which were painted to order of many Kings. King Rama IV of Rattanakosin had ordered the painters to paint scenes from the Chronical. In this picture the scene of King Naresuvara declaring independent from the Burmese.

[ This masterful mural in ordination hall of Wat Suwandararam, Ayutthaya, shows the brave King Naresuan on elephant back defeating the Burmese Crown Prince (Phra Mahauparacha) in 1592 ]

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Reclining Buddha at Wat Lokayasutharam : Ayutthaya

[ photo credit to]

Wat Lokkayasutharam This monastery is over a kilometre behind Wat Suanluangsopsawanadjacent to Wat Worachettharam. Accessible by the road inside the compound of the Distillery Plant, or through the road behind the Phlapphla Trimuk (three-gabled roof pavilion), It is in the area of the Acient Palace passing Wat Woraphot and Wat Worachettharam going to the siteof the large reclining Buddha, made of brick and covered with plaster, approximately 29 metres long. Many large hexagonal pillar ruins near the image are believed to be the ruins of the Ubosot.

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Wat Phananchoeng : Ayutthaya

Wat Phananchoeng is in the southern part of the city near the river. It was built in 1324 A.D., 26 year before king U-thong founded Ayutthaya, although it is not known by whom this temple was built. Phra Chao Phananchoeng, a large sitting Buddha constructed of brick and mortar, has been well known of a long time. King Naresuen the Great repaired it once, and the other Kings of Ayudhya must keep it in good repair too, though no mention is made of that in the chronicle, from which it is learnt only that when Ayudhya was taken by the Burmese tears flowed from the eyes of this image.

Later on the first king of the Chakri Dynasty and some of his successors repaired the image and towards the end of 1854 A.D., King Mongkut completely renovated the image and renamed it Phra Bhudh-trai-ratana nayok. On the 21st December 1901, during the reignof King Chulalongkorn, the outer garment of Phra Chao Phanan-cheng caught fire and the image was damaged in many places. King Chulalongkorn commanded the image to be repaired, and the work was finished in 1902 A.D.

On the 15th March 1928 the cheeks and the lower jaws of the image broke into pieces. The Royal Institute had it repaired in 1929. At that time Phra Dhamatri-lok the abbot of this monastery, on collecting the bits of gold leaves left by the devotees inside the Vihara gathered 165 grammes of that metal, 690 grammes of gold were contributed by others. With these 855 grammes of gold the head of the monastery made an "Una-lom" (ornament for the forehead substituted it for the older one which was of copper plated with gold).

Phra Chao Phananchoeng is held in respect by the Thai people who, when they visit ayutthaya, offer worship to this image and obtain prediction of their luck from its Vihara. Tourists who do not visit this temple miss the opportunity of seeing one of the very large, old and beautiful images. No Photographs of this image too are to be found in any book or even in the National Museum, where there is a collection of photographs of all other important images of the Buddha, because there is not enough room within the Vihara to set the camera at the proper distance to get a complete picture of this large image.

Phra Chao Phananchoeng is an image in the posture of subduing Mara. It measures 14 meters and 25 centimeters from knee to knee and 19 meters high (including the ornament above the head).


[photo credit to]

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Thursday, October 11, 2007

Wat Indravihan: Bangkok

Located in Bangkhunphrom area on Wisutkrasat Road, Wat Indravihan is well-known for a huge standing Buddha image. Thai image of ''Buddhasiariyametriya'', is 32 metres tall (108.99 feet) and 10 metres and 24 inches wide (40.09 feet).

This Buddhist monument was built during the reign of King Rama IV. The topknot of the Buddha image contains a relic of Lord Buddha brought from Sri Lanka. The temple is open to the public every day. There is no admission fee.

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Wat Chantharam or Wat Tha Sung : Uthai Thani Province

This old temple was built in Ayuthaya period. It was very decayed and rotten. Then one day Pra Rajpromyanthera (Luang Po Rusi Lingdum) came to this temple. He developed it to be the most famous and exquisite temple in Uthaithani province. There are Viharn Kaew (Glass Building) , Prasart Thong-kam (Golden Castle) , both of them are very exquisite and elaborate architecture. You can feed thousands of fish here.


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Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Wat Uposatharam (Wat Bost) : Uthai Thani Province

Mural Paintings at Wat Ubosatharam

[ Photo : ]

This monastery is situated on Ko Thepho opposite to Uthai Thani Province Market, commonly called by the residents as "Wat Bot". The early Rattanakosin period mural paintings on the walls of the main shrine hall are regarded as very beautiful. Paintings of divine being are on the upper part while scenes from the life of the Lord Buddha decorate the lower part of the wall.

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Phra Rabiang (The cloister or Galleries) : Wat Phra Kaew

[ photo: ]

The Royal Chapel is surrounded on four sides by cloister-like gallerie. It was constructed in the late 18th century during the reign of King Rama I, and has a total of seven portals. Of these, the two most often used are each equiped with a disrobing pavilion and its attached palanquin-mounting platform: one is located to the west of the gallery opening onto the Palace grounds; the other is on the east and leads to the Swatdi-Sopha Gate and out into the city.

These pavilions served for the king to change from his monarchal attire into suitable garments for worship prior to entering the precincts of the Chapel, and to change back on his way out. Another note-worthy portal is the Sirattana Satsada Gate to the south of the Gallery. This portal opens onto the inner court of the Grand Palace. It was through this portal that the ladies of the Palace used to make their way to the Royal Chapel for worship, merit-making and other religious ceremonies.

The gallery is noted for its murals depicting the entire Ramakian (the Thai version of the Ramayana epic). The verses telling the story of the painting are inscribed on marble slabs imbedded on the four sides of each pillar supporting the gallery roof. There are 4,984 verses altogether. Though originally painted when the Gallery was built, the murals as seen today reflect little of the art of the First Reign because the chronic dampness that affected the walls of the Gallery caused rapid deterioration and peeling of the murals, necessitating frequent restorations throughout the two centuries of their existence.

Conservations was carried out during the Third, Fourth and Fifth Reigns but it is not certain whether the murals were nearly retouched or entirely repainted. For the 150th Anniversary of Rattanakosin in A.D. 1932 the paintings were white-washed over and painted anew. The most recent restoration was done in the present reign; starting in 1965, it took seven years to complete, and modern technology was employed in an attempt to prevent future humidity problems.


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Monday, September 10, 2007

Prasat Phra Thep Bidon (The Royal Pantheon) :Wat Phra Kaew

The construction of the Royal Pantheon commenced in the year 1855, the first year of King Rama IV's regin. He intended to use it for the enshrinement of the Emerald Buddha. However, it was not completed until after his death, and his successor, King Rama V, did not move the palladium to the new building which he considered too small to accomodate the congregation at royal ceremonies. A Small gilt stupa belonging to King Rama IV was placed there instead.

The Royal Pantheon was built on a cruciform plan with four porticoes and a corncob shaped tower-like superstructure known as "prang", in 1903 the gilt stupa together with part of the edifice was destroyed by fire. After the repair of the building King Rama IV, the then reigning king, mde use of it as the Royal Pantheon of the Chakri Dynasty, bestowing on it the name Prasat Phra Thep Bidon (meaning the Shrine of the Celestial Ancestors). Life-size statues of the five preceeding kings from King Rama I to King Rama V were initially installed: those of King Rama VI, King Rama VII and King Rama VIII were installed later, after their deaths, and the Royal Pantheon was opened to the public to pay homage to their past sovereigns on April 6, the anniversary of the Founding of the Chakri Dynasty. The Royal Pantheon is noted for its eye-catching gilt lacquer angel-motif designs on the outer panels of the doors and windows, and for the decorative motif based on the emblems of each of the first five sovereigns of the Dynasty on the side panels of the outer recesses of the doors and windows. On the lintels are stucco gold designs composed of royal decorations.

Inside the Royal Pantheon, stands the mother-of-pearl inlaid cabinet for the canonical texts. The cabinet with its tiered roof is one of the most exquisite examples of the early Rattanakosin work of art whose creator, one of King Rama I's highest ranking courtiers, evidently strove to rival the best of Ayutthaya inlay workmanship. The dimensions of the cabinet in relation to those of the doorways of the building shows conformation to the convention of making the scripture cabinets larger than the exits so that thaey could not be removed from the place where they rightly belonged.


photo credit :oceansmile

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Wat Phra Lao Thep Nimit : Amnat Charoen Province

Wat Phra Lao Thep Nimit is on Highway 2049 about 2 kilometers from Amphoe Phana centre. It is an old temple. Phra Lao Thep Nimit, an ancient Buddha image, is houses in the beautiful ordination hall is about 200 years old. The Ubosot (convocation hall) is of the Lanna architectural style .The principal sacred Buddha image, in the attitude of Subduing Mara is lacquered and gilded.

Tourism Authority of Thailand


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Friday, August 24, 2007

Wat Supattanaram : Ubon Ratchathani

This is a royal temple of the Dhammayut Sect in the northeast. The temple, built in 1853 on the bank of the Mun River surrounded by beautiful and tranquil scenery. There is a Thai-Chinese-European style ordination hall, which houses the principal serene Buddha image of the temple.

photo: thai-tour
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Wat Nong Bua : Ubon Ratchathani

This is the only temple in this province that has a rectangular Chedi, which is an imitation of Chedi Buddhakhaya of India. The temple is located on the outskirts of Ubon Ratchathani on Highway No. 212 (Ubon-Amnat Charoen). At the 3-km. marker on the highway, turn into a side road and proceed for 800 meters to the temple.

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Wat Nong Pah Pong : Ubon Ratchathani

Wat Nong Pa Phong is a mediation center with a quiet and peaceful atmosphere where a number of foreigners practice Buddhism. The center is located on Highway No. 2178 about 6 kilometers from the city.

Wat Nong Pa Phong and Wat Pa Nanachat, provide a special opportunity for non-Thai speakers to find out more about Buddhism and to experience the insight meditation (Vipassana-style of meditation). For those interested, it is recommended that you can pay a visit to the temple of your choice and discuss with foreign monks beforehand. The participation in the meditation course may require some commitments. Call Wat Nong Pa Phong at tel. 045 322729 for more information. Staff speaks English.

Necessities to take with you when staying in Buddhist temple/monastery/retreat Centre:
The following items are suggested as useful to take:

- Clothes:Loose fitting, easily cared for. Simple sandals and some loss fitting tops, especially T-shirts are highly recommended. An umbrella can be useful in the rainy season. In the cold season a sweater or two would be practical. Also a blanket or sleeping bag.

- Medicine:Pills for diarrhea and constipation, mosquito repellent and coils, tiger balm or other ointment for bites. Some kind of antibiotic or disinfectant for cuts, band-aids, minor first-aid stuff. Eye wash can be very useful. Anti-malaria preventives.

- Food items:Most of the temples/monasteries provide both food and accommodation. However, there are some useful items you might bring along but not necessary: thermos, coffee, tea, sugar, milk, ovaltine, hot plate, cup and kettle.

- Toilet articles:Toilet paper, soap, mirror, all toilet articles. Helpful to have a small scrub brush for laundry.

- Tips: Behave with full awareness, dress conservatively, have much patience to yourself and others.


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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Wat Neramit Wipattasana : Loei

The temple is located on a hillside near Phra That Si Song Rak. Both the ordination hall and pagoda, which are constructed of laterite, were designed from the imagination of both monks and novices. On touring the interior visitors will notice a resemblance to the great temples of Bangkok. Other than a replica of Phra Phutthachinnarat (of Phitsanulok Province) that is enshrined here, there is a wax figure of the late Luang Pho Phra Maha Phan Sila Wisuttho, the founder of the temple.


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Monday, August 6, 2007

Prathat Tha Uthen : Nakhon Phanom

Phra That Tha Uthen is located opposite Hin Bun town in Laos. It is situated approximately 26 kilometers north of the city on Highway 212. Similar in style to Phra That Phanom, Phra That Tha Uthen is 66 meters high. Constructed in 1912, the chedi (pagoda) houses the relics of the Lord Buddha’s disciple brought from over from Yangon, Myanmar.


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PRASAT NANG RAM : Nakorn Ratchasima province

Prasat Nang Ram is located 79 kilometers far from town on the route No. 2 It can be reached by driving 62 kilometers to the crossroads of Ban Wat, then turing right along the highway No. 207 for 22 kms. To Ban Nang Ram and finally turining left with travelling further for 4 kilometers. Prasat Nang Ram was built in Khmer style during the 12th century to be a nursing place.

The sanctuary consists of the main stupa an vihara surrounded by laterite walls. Outside the wall, there is a pond lined with stepped laterite. Far away 80 meters, surrounded by leterite walls and the U-shaped pond are other three stupas assumed to be the residence of medical men.

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Sunday, July 15, 2007

The 9-storey stupa Phra Mahathat Kaen Nakhon : Khon Kaen province

Phra Mahathat Kaen Nakhon or The 9-storey stupa Located in Wat Nong Waeng, a royal temple on Klang Mueang Road, the Phra Mahathat houses relics of the Lord Buddha and important Buddhist scriptures. Doors and windows of the 9 storeys of the stupa are beautifully carved, featuring the life and former reinearnations of the Lord Buddha, 16 classes of visible deities in the Brahma’s world, and Buddhist rites. Murals within the stupa feature history of the town. The top floor, on the 9th storey, houses relics of the Lord Buddha. Visitors can enjoy a panoramic view of the town from there.

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Beautiful Pagoda Wat Tham Sua : Kanchanaburi

Wat Tham Sua
It's close to Wat Tham Khao Noi. The monastery was constructed in Thai architectural style. The Great Buddha image and pagoda placed in the temple is uniquely beautiful and is respected by all buddhists.

[photo: thai-tour]

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Old reclining Buddha image Wat Pamok Worawihan : Ang Thong province

Wat Pamok Worawihan

Is located in municipal Tambon Pa Mok on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River approximately 18 kilometers away from Amphoe Mueang. Take Highway No. 309 (Ang Thong – Ayutthaya route) at Km 40, then take Highway No. 329 and 3501 to find a signage to Wat Pa Mok. In the temple compound, there is a beautiful gilded reclining Buddha made of brick, and plaster.

The image is 22.58 meters from the topknot to the feet. It is assumed to have been constructed in the
Sukhothai period. Legend of this Buddha image was that he floated along the river and sank in front of this temple. People offered sacrifices to the Buddha image before pulling him from the river to house on the riverbank. In the royal chronicle, it is mentioned that before leading his army to attack Phra Maha Upparacha, King Naresuan the Great stopped at this temple to gather his troops and paid homage to the image.

Due to the erosion on the riverbank near wihan, King Sisanphet III commanded Phraya Ratchasongkhram to lead the removal of
Buddha image from the riverbank. King Thai Sa controlled this removal and invited the Buddha image to enshrine in the new wihan in Wat Talad, 168 meters away from the river.

Later the King commanded to merge Wat Talad and Wat Chipakhao into one temple and renamed as “
Wat Pa Mok” due to the abundance of Wrightia religiosa (Mok) trees all around. Besides the reclining Buddha, this temple is famous for wihan Khian, where the wall confronting to the river has a tall stand formerly used by the King, mondop of 4-foot prints, and tower of monastic library, etc.


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Friday, July 13, 2007

Beautiful seated Buddha image Wat Tonson: Ang Thong

Wat Tonson is located on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River opposite Ang Thong Technical College. Wat Tonson is an ancient temple housing Somdet Phra Si Mueangthong, a very beautiful seated Buddha image in the posture of subduing Mara with the lap size of about 14 meters wide and 19 meters high molded in metal and gilded. Wat Tonsons abbot, Phra Ratchasuwanmalee, started the construction in 1973. Her Royal Highness, Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn performed a ceremony to complete the construction on March 7, 1985. This is regarded as the one of the largest metal molded Buddha images with beautiful posture.

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Wat Phra Prang : Singburi

This is located in Tambon Choeng Klat, Amphoe Bang Rachan, some 17 kms. from Sing Buri township, the Wat contains within its precincts a Prang assumed to be constructed during the reign of King Narai the Great. The Prang measures 60 meters high with 20 meters wide at its base. There is a hill topped with a reproduced Buddha's footprint within the Prang. In addition, traces of 3-4 ancient kilns dating back to Ayutthaya period had been found in a nearby area. The kilns were relatively large and once produced various kinds of pottery such as jar, bowl, mortar, pot, gable top, floor tile, etc.

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Wat Sawang Arom : Singburi

[Nang Yai : Shadow play]

This monastery, situated in Amphoe Muang, is a centre of Buddha image sculpting, the technique of which was handed down from Ban Chang Lor school in Thon Buri. The collection of Nang Yai, a king of shadow play, at Wat Sawang Arom with 300 pieces in good condition is the most complete in Thailand.

[photo source ]

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Wat Khao Yee San :Samut Songkhram

Wat Khao Yee San is an old temple. It is believed to have been constructed in late Ayutthaya period. The interesting attraction is a boat shaped building (Wihan) situated on top of the mountain. There, enshrined, are the 4 traces of Lord Buddhas Footprints. The Mondop and wooden doors are of a supreme craftsmanship. There also is Luang Pho Poo Pu Sriracha Shrine, which is highly revered by all. The worship fair of Luang Pho Poo Pu Sriracha is held annually in the middle of November.

source: tourismthailand

photo :

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Friday, July 6, 2007

Wat Amphawan Chetiyaram : Samut Songkhram

This temple is located at the mouth of the Amphawan canal. The temple was constructed by Somdet Phra Roop Sirisophak Mahanak Nari, the princess mother of Somdet Phra Amarintharamat. It is believed that Rama II, King Phra Phuttha Lerlta, was born here.

Later, Wat Amphawan was renovated by King Rama III, IV, and V. At present it is a second class royal monastery. The beautiful main building and precious antiques inside the temple are of an early Rattanakosin period architectural and arts style.

photo: thai-tour

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Thursday, June 28, 2007

Vichayen House : Lop Buri

Vichayen House
was a residence for Chevalier de Chaumont, the first French ambassador to Thailand during the reign of Louis XVI. Later, the place was occupied by Chao Phraya Vichayen (a Greek adventurer Constantine Phaulkon) until he was killed by the revolutionaries in 1688.

Many ruined buildings dot the compound, one served as a Roman Catholic chapel. Others were residences for the ambassador and mission members. Ruined brick water tanks and fountains are visible.

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

Wat Phra Patone Chedi : Nakorn Pathom

An ancient Wat of Dvaravati Period, it is located at Suan Nantha Utthayan, Tambon Jorakeh. A number of religious arts, artifacts can be found in this wat such as bronze Buddha images, parts of the limb of the Buddha image Sila Kao and the guarding giant, lion including parts of the intricately decorative items of the ruined Chedi.

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Wat Phra Borom That Voraviharn : Chainat

Wat Phra Borom That Voraviharn is an ancient buddhist temple built at the beginning of Ayutthaya period situated at Ban Tai Muang, Tambon Chainat about 4 kms. from downtown.

This is an
old temple on the bank of the Chao Phraya River.There is an old pagoda housing Lord Buddhas relics. It had been originally constructed with laterite in the Khmer period and was renovated in the Ayutthaya and Rattanakosin periods.
[photo credit:]

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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Wat Thammamun : Chainat

This hillside temple is located on the bank of the Chao Phraya River, 8 kilometres from Chainat. It was constructed during the Ayutthaya period and enshrines Luang Pho Thammachak, a standing Buddha image with a mixture of the Sukhothai and Ayutthaya styles. Two fairs to worship the image are held in May and October.

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Wat Pho Bangkhla : Chachoengsao

This temple is 23 kilometers from Chachoengsao. Using highway No. 304 for 17 kilometers, then turn left to highway No.3121 for 6 kilometers, pass the Monument of King Taksin the Great, then turn left 500 meters. Also, another route is to travel by boat from Chachoengsao town at Tawan Ok Plaza pier, and land at the pier of the temple. There are many bats on trees during the day and fly out to search for food during the night. And even though fruits are their favorites, these bats never eat fruits grown by Bang Khla people.

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