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Wat Phra Kaew

Wat Phra Kaew
Wat Phra Kaew
# About the Sacred Emerald Temple

The Temple of the Emerald, in Thai Wat Phra Kaew, or Phra Kaew, is considered to be the most sacred place in Thailand. It was built in the 18th century by King Rama I, and is a great example of the beauty of religious Thai archeology.

The temple, which is part of the Royal Palace in Bangkok, includes about 100 buildings with bright colors and golden-colored roofs. Its white color and its increasingly convergent corridors symbolize the center of the world, the holiest place according to Buddhist belief.

In the center of this temple is the most beloved Buddha statue in the kingdom, the Emerald Buddha. There is also a collection of beautiful and impressive Thai art objects. The walls of the temple depict the stories of the Jakata, which depict the Buddha's different life cycles.



#The Emerald or The Emerald Statue

In the Emerald Temple is the Emerald Buddha, the most revered Buddha statue in Thailand. It is a small statue, about 70 centimeters high, of Buddha. It is kept in a glass case on a high altar above the heads of the worshipers. Worshipers flock here in droves to see it and pray, with what the Thais believe, is the treasure of the king's magic.

Although it is called the Emerald Buddha, in fact the statue is not made of emerald, but of jade.

In any case, this image of the Buddha, which many see as the sacred mascot and symbol of the magical power of the King of Thailand, symbolizes the power and independence of the Kingdom of Thailand, along with the good fortune of the Kingdom of Thailand.

Since it was first discovered in 1464, when lightning struck a stupa, a type of pagoda, and split it in two, the statue underwent many transformations. By the time it reached its present residence, the statue had wandered and was a symbol of the transformation of all Siam, the ancient name of today's Thailand. Somewhere in 1551, during the history and regional wars, the Emerald Buddha was taken from here to Laos. In 1778 it was re-captured and returned to Siam.

The statue's high status and its immense national and religious significance in Thailand is shown by the fact that it is the king himself who replaces the Buddha's robes every season. This happens three times a year, at the beginning of the three seasons of the cellular year - the hot, cold and rainy seasons.



#Getting around the Emerald Temple

Three important buildings of the temple complex are the golden stupa with the relics of the Buddha, the Phra Mondop, with the central library of Scripture Buddha in Thailand, and the Royal Pantheon, houses the statues of the Chakri dynasty kings.

Note also the miniature model of the temple of Angkor Wat, the largest temple in the world, built in Cambodia by the king of Siam, Rama IV. The famous temple was built when the Thai Empire ruled Cambodia. Viewing the model illustrates the power of one of the wonders of the ancient world of Southeast Asia.

In the northwest corner of the complex you will see the royal mausoleum. Where the ash jars of the royal family of the dead, who have died over the generations, are kept. Entry is forbidden to the general public, but also from the outside you can be impressed by the splendor of the kings of Siam here.



#Tips

Make sure you arrive modestly dressed. Do not come in shorts, sleeveless shirts, tank tops or strapless.

Do not listen to the drivers outside if they say the place is closed. Their reasoning is difficult to understand, and you have opening hours.

After passing through the palace compound from Emerald Temple to the palace itself, you will not be able to go back to the temple.

At the entrance to the temple, one must take off his shoes and the photograph is forbidden.

Women should not touch the monks.

The ticket price is about 200 baht.


A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/MqF7ysFnz3s


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