Discover the top 10 Bangkok temples to uncover the secrets in the City of Angels.
Bangkok, the capital of Thailand is a kinetic metropolis known for its one-of-its-kind food & drink scenery, energetic nightlife, modern cityscape, and prime historical landmarks. But it is not these that make Bangkok stand out. It is the city’s soul that lures travellers to visit Bangkok, one of the most beautiful places in Thailand, with Bangkok temples being the best places to uncover the city’s spirit.
Pay a visit to the top 10 Bangkok temples to unveil the magic of Bangkok and come to know the secret of happiness, a state of mind that makes Bangkok truly unique.
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Top 10 Bangkok Temples
Temple of the Emerald Buddha
- Address: Na Phra Lan Rd, Phra Borom Maha Ratchawang, เขตพ ระนคร Bangkok 10200, Thailand
- Hours: 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM
Most sacred of Bangkok temples, the Temple of the Emerald Buddha is located on the grounds of Grand Palace, the most magnificent of the city’s palaces, sitting in its historical center. It houses the Emerald Buddha, Thailand’s palladium, and one of the world’s art marvels, a magnet not only for locals and tourists but also pilgrims from all over Thailand. Every king of Thailand has contributed to the development of the site, with the edifice’s intricacies tracing the kingdom’s past in utmost nuance in its interior décor and exterior.
Wat Mahathat Yuwaratrangsarit Temple
- Address: Wat Mahathat, Naresuan Rd, Tambon Tha Wa Su Kri, Amphoe Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Chang Wat Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand
- Hours: 6:00 AM to 5:00 PM, its grounds are one of the best places to watch the sunrise in Bangkok.
Located between Grand and Front Palaces it has been used as a burial place for funerals and ceremonies of utmost importance and has acquired the status of one of the most important Bangkok temples. On its picturesque premises, you can see not only the place of worship’s beautiful interior and exterior but also visit the world’s oldest Buddhist university, Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University, and Vipassana Meditation Center, one of the best places in Thailand to go to meditate: guided meditation classes, assisted by English-speaking monks take place daily. Meanwhile, longer meditation sessions, including accommodation and food, can be arranged as well.
Wat Mangkon Kamlawat Temple
- Address: Corner of Chareon Krung and Mangkon Roads, Chinatown
- Hours: 6:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Set up in 1871 for Mahayana Buddhists in Siam, the temple is the number-one Chinese temple in Bangkok. On a visit here, you can take pleasure in its stunning exterior with a traditional Chinese wide-eaved roof, its monumental walls and pillars, and a tall platform on which the edifice is perched. Or head inside where offerings of fruit and tea to gods and deities by the devout worshipers and the soothing fragrance of incense make one’s heart linger and return.
Note that the best time to visit Wat Mangkkon Kamalawat, one of the biggest Bangkok temples, is a Chinese holiday, such as the annual Chinese vegetarian festival or Chinese New Year.
Wat Pho Temple
- Address: 2 Sanam Chai Rd, Phra Borom Maha Ratchawang, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200, Thailand
- Hours: 8:30 AM to 6:30 PM.
Known for its tranquil aura, and beautiful sculpture, Wat Pho is one of the most beautiful Buddhist Bangkok temples, with its huge 46m-long reclining Buddha being one of the main Bangkok tourist attractions.
It is situated right behind the Temple of Emerald Buddha, on the Grand Palace premises, the spiritual heart of Old Bangkok. The area is crisscrossed by scenic canals and is home to a maze of quiescent sois, small lanes where urban main-street jumble makes way to the calm of a family reunion or siesta.
One of the main reasons to visit Wat Pho is its humongous reclining Buddha that is 46m long, covered in gold leaf. Head to Wat Pho to immerse into the authentic atmosphere of Siam, where Buddhism is one of the main things that define the national character, along with delicious rice the area around the temple is known for.
San Chao Rong Kuak Temple
- Address: 1192 ตรอก San Chao Rong Kueak, Talat Noi, Samphanthawong, Bangkok 10100, Thailand
- Hours: since the place is literally unknown to mass tourism, the working hours must be found out on the spot.
One of the most often overlooked Bangkok temples, San Chao Rong Kuak, located in bustling Chinatown, is one of the best places to visit in Bangkok to acquaint yourself with the Hakka Chinese culture. The Hakkas’ are known as great shoe-makers, so the temple they built more than a century ago is home to a shoemakers’ shrine.
Even if it is not the only shrine made by the once-prominent Hakka community, it is one the most beloved of Hakka Chinese Bangkok temples. It is best to visit during the Chinese New Year, when many of this, now somewhat smallish, group show up to pay tributes to Cai Shen, God of Wealth.
The True Friend Temple
- Address: 371 ซอย อรุณอมรินทร์ 6 เเขวง วัดกัลยาณ์ Thon Buri, Bangkok 10600, Thailand
- Hours: 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Situated in Thonburi District, on the banks of the majestic Chao Phraya, the True Friend Temple is one of the best Bangkok temples to visit. It is not only beauteous in appearance but is also one of the few Buddhist temples commemorating long-standing ties between the monarchy and influential elites.
Its creation is largely a result of a Chinese nobleman donating his land to build the temple, as a sign of his appreciation of King Rama III’s friendship. Monarchy and the society as a whole have long-running deep ties which make Thailand one of the most reverent countries vis-à-vis their monarch, seeing him as Adherent of Buddhism and Upholder of Religions.
Kuan Yin Temple at Yaowarat Road
- Address: 10100, Samphanthawong, Bangkok, Thailand
- Hours: the foundation on whose premises the temple is situated provides free traditional medical care and care to the poor and homeless, thanks to this it is one of the few Bangkok temples that can be visited 24 hours, with visits at night, especially memorable thanks to the reddish glow of incense-smoke-enveloped lanterns.
Situated in kinetic Bangkok Chinatown, Kuan Yin Temple is one of the most popular Bangkok temples, most visited during the Chinese New Year Holiday. Go to Kuan Yin Temple to find calm amidst the throngs of Bangkok Chinatown, and take pleasure in the subtle fragrance of incense with the community of the devout, coming here to pray for fertility, health, happiness and success.
The teak-carved image of Kuan Yin, the Chinese goddess of mercy, is 900 years old and is believed to be one of the most revered Chinese-culture objects in Bangkok, making Kuan Yin one of the main Bangkok temples to visit.
The Temple of Dawn
- Address: 58 Thanon Wang Doem, Wat Arun, Bangkok Yai, Bangkok 10600, Thailand.
- Hours: 8:00 AM to 5 PM.
Bangkok’s Temple of Dawn was named after the Hindu god Aruna, often associated with the rising sun. Ironically, it is most beautiful at twilight, but with the vast mighty river flowing by making it one of the most scenic Bangkok temples any time of the day, any day of the week, any season of the year.
It is not just the outside that makes people fall in love with the location; its inside is just as beautiful as its exterior, with the serene atmosphere of the place making it one of the best Bangkok temples to listen to yourself and approach the triumphant calm of the universe.
If worried about catching the bus book a tour to pay a visit to Wat Arun, one of the best Bangkok temples.
Silom Hindu Temple
- Address: 2 Pan Rd, Khwaeng Silom, Bang Rak, Bangkok 10500, Thailand
- Hours: Note that it is believed that the Silom Road has been named after the temple’s founder, Soi Vaiti. The Hindu temple can be visited from 6.00 am. to 8.00 pm, but it is arguably the morning that is the best time to visit Silom area, when traffic is light.
Sri Maha Mariamman Temple is one of the prettiest Bangkok temples. The Hindu prayer house is situated on the busy Silom Road, one of Bangkok’s main thoroughfares. It was built in 1879 by Vaithi Padayatchi, a Tamil Hindu immigrant, and has since then become the center of the South Indian community’s spiritual life.
Pay a visit to the temple to see shrines to Kartik, Ganesh, and Sri Maha Mariamman, who gave the name to the place of worship. If especially lucky, attend Navratri in September-October, with many Indians and Thais, who believe that Indian mythology is an intrinsic part of the Thai cultural heritage, present on the spot.
Digamber Jain Temple
- Address: 143/2-3 Phuttha Osot Alley, Suriya Wong, Bang Rak, Bangkok 10500, Thailand
- Hours: since the site is non-touristic there is no information about hours when it can be visited
One of the most fascinating and least-known sites to visit in Bangkok is Digamber Jain Temple. Barely noticeable from the outside, it is not the temple’s grandeur that makes it stand out. The temple is a spiritual home to the city’s Jain community, made one of the best places to visit in Bangkok by their devoted faith in non-violence.
Jains renounced violence to such an extent that they not only don’t inflict violence upon others but also don’t eat meat, kill insects or often even drink alcohol (to keep alive bacteria). Jainism is one of the most fascinating systems of belief one can encounter on a visit to Bangkok to sense the beauty of non-violence.
Where to Stay in Bangkok
Bangkok temples are where the soul of the city dwells. This city of happiness is known for many things, such as great food & drink scenery, frenetic nightlife, and great tourist activities, but it can be argued that it is its temples that make up the spiritual core of Bangkok and make it the city of contrasts it is, where hustle & bustle of civilization meets the authentic Thai tranquillity of the prayer house.
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