Bangkok is rich in culture and history, with many stunning temples to explore. Here are five major temples you won’t want to miss on your visit to the city:
Wat Phra Kaew / Temple of the Emerald Buddha
This is the most sacred Buddhist temple in Thailand. Located within the grounds of the Grand Palace, this temple is home to the tiny, intricately carved Emerald Buddha, believed to have been created in the 15th century. Visitors can marvel at the temple’s beautiful architecture, including its intricate gilded stucco, mirrored mosaics, and colorful murals depicting Buddhist mythology.
Wat Arun / Temple of Dawn
This s one of Bangkok’s most iconic landmarks. You can find this temple on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. This temple is named after the Hindu god Aruna, who is associated with the rising sun. The temple’s distinctive central prang (tower) is replete with intricate ceramic tiles, and visitors can climb to the top for stunning views of the city and river.
Wat Pho / Temple of the Reclining Buddha
This is one of Bangkok’s largest and oldest temples. Located near the Grand Palace, this temple is home to the famous 46-meter-long Reclining Buddha, which is covered in gold leaf and adorned with mother-of-pearl decorations. Visitors can also explore the temple’s many other buildings, including a traditional Thai massage school and a herbal medicine center.
Wat Saket / The Temple of the Golden Mount
This beautiful temple is located on a man-made hill in the heart of Bangkok. The temple’s main attraction is its golden chedi, which offers stunning city views. Visitors can also explore the temple’s many shrines and pagodas and learn about its history at the on-site museum.
This is a lesser-known temple in Bangkok, but it is well worth a visit. Located just right next to the river, this temple boasts its 64-meter tall and 40 meters wide statue of a golden Buddha, the tallest in Bangkok! Behind the gigantic Buddha is a big stupa, Maharatchamongkhon, with an amazing, must-see vault on the top floor. The views from here are also worth noting.
These five temples are must-see attractions in Bangkok, offering a glimpse into the city’s rich cultural heritage and spiritual traditions. Whether you’re interested in Buddhist history and architecture or simply want to experience the peaceful atmosphere of these sacred spaces, these temples are sure to impress.
Where to Stay in Bangkok
Bangkok has places to stay for every traveler. The Khaosan area is a backpacker’s paradise for cheap hostels and accommodations. The nightlife here is insanely loud and crowded. The location of Silom offers LGBTQ hostels/hostels and other accommodations. Downtown Sukhumvit is posh, but the noise and traffic can be really discouraging. I didn’t stay in these neighborhoods because I prefer a serviced apartment with a good wifi connection. I stayed at Sitara Place Hotel and Service Apartment, which is 6 minutes walk to the MRT and surrounded by malls, street food stalls, and night markets.