Wat Phra Chetuphon
Last week we talked a little bit about the majesty of Wat Pho.
This week, let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of what you need to know to get the most from your visit.
A FEW THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT WAT PHO
Of course, being a temple, make sure you are dressed respectably, with shoulders and knees covered, wearing shoes that can easily slip on and off.
Hire a Guide
There are multiple entrances to the temple compound. I recommend finding the main gate, because this is the only place where you can hire a guide. Trust me, it’s worth having a guide for this one. The place is rich with history and amazing stories, and to really understand what you are looking at, you will want a guide. Or, if you are trying to keep costs down, find a guide who is already leading a group who speaks your language, and then just sort of shadow behind.
Entrance into the grounds costs 100 baht. Keep your ticket, because it has a small stub that can be redeemed for a free little bottle of water! Bangkok heat can be stifling, and staying hydrated is important. The temple got tired of tourists suffering heat stroke, and handing out free water was their solution. Also, near to where you grab your water, there is a stand with free maps of the grounds. Make sure you pick up one of those as well, so you don’t miss seeing anything.
Toilets are found around the perimeter walls and are very clean.
The Bronze Bowls
Make sure that you bring an extra 20 baht with you. Within the temple that houses the Reclining Buddha there are 108 bronze bowls that are meant to represent the 108 auspicious characters of Buddha. 20 Baht will buy you a small bowl of coins that visitors can drop in each bowl as they walk down the corridor. It is believed to bring one good fortune and is a fun way to leave a little donation to help the monks maintain the wat.
Over the soft whispers of the crowd you can hear each coin dropped into each bowl, and it rings slightly, like a bell. With all of the people dropping coins sporadically, it makes for a syncopated music reminiscent of raindrops on a tin roof.
Getting AroundCLICK HERE TO SEE THE FULL SIZED MAP
Wat Pho Map Index
1. Phra Ubosot
3. East Viharn
5. West Viharn
6. North Viharn
16. Viharn Phranorn
(Chapel of the Reclining Buddha)
Points of Interest
2. Kamphaeng Kaew
7. Phra Prang
8. 5 Chedis
9. Phra Chedi Rai
10. Phra Rabiang
11. Phra Viharn Kod
13. Phra Maha Chedi Si Rajakarn
14. Phra Mondop
17.Sala Karn Parien
23. Sala Rai
12. Khao Mor (Rock Gardens)
18. Missakawan Park
19. The Crocodile Pond
22. Massage Service
Till next weeks folks.
And remember, never stop being curious.
Interested in Southeast Asia?
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One of the thousands of maps available from Maps.com.