Wat Arun

Descriptions:

 

After the fall of Ayuthaya, King Taksin ceremoniously clinched control here on the site of a local shrine and established a royal palace and a temple to house the Emerald Buddha. The temple was renamed after the Indian god of dawn (Aruna) and in honour of the literal and symbolic founding of a new Ayuthaya. Today the temple is one of Bangkok’s most iconic structures – not to mention one of the few Buddhist temples one is encouraged to climb on.

 

It wasn’t until the capital and the Emerald Buddha were moved to Bangkok that Wat Arun received its most prominent characteristic: the 82m-high þrahng (Khmer-style tower). The tower’s construction was started during the first half of the 19th century by Rama II (King Phraphutthaloetla Naphalai; r 1809–24) and later completed by Rama III (King Phranangklao; r 1824–51). Steep stairs lead to the top, from where there’s amazing views of Mae Nam Chao Phraya. Not apparent from a distance are the ornate floral mosaics made from broken, multihued Chinese porcelain, a common temple ornamentation in the early Ratanakosin period, when Chinese ships calling at the port of Bangkok discarded tonnes of old porcelain as ballast.

Also worth an inspection is the interior of the bòht (ordination hall). The main Buddha image is said to have been designed by Rama II himself. The murals date from the reign of Rama V (King Chulalongkorn; r 1868–1910); particularly impressive is one that depicts Prince Siddhartha encountering examples of birth, old age, sickness and death outside his palace walls, an experience that led him to abandon the worldly life. The ashes of Rama II are interred in the base of the presiding Buddha image.

Frequent cross-river ferries run over to Wat Arun from Tien Pier (3B).

Ayuthaya Ruins (Ayutthaya)

Ayuthaya Ruins (Ayutthaya)

Attractions worth visiting in the Ayutthaya Historical Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, are many,...

Calypso Cabaret Show

Calypso Cabaret Show

Calypso Cabaret Show at Asiatique gives you one of the warmest welcomes you can find in the land of...

Chatuchak Weekend Market

Chatuchak Weekend Market

Descriptions: Among the largest markets in the world, Chatuchak seems to unite everything buyable, from...

Crocodile Farm & Elephant Show

Crocodile Farm & Elephant Show

Located to the west of Bangkok in Nakhon Pathom province. For less than an hour drive Samphran Elephant...

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

The most famous of the floating markets – the one you’ve seen photographed hundreds of times –is the...

Dream World

Dream World

Dream World is the absolute stuff of kids! You won’t get out of here until they are exhausted… and you...

You may also like

Create my trip
Asia Tour Advisor
Tour added to wishlist!