Bangkok Temples

Bangkok's temples are the primary tourist attractions of the city. At times, there seems to be another temple around every corner, and that almost really is the case! The "big three" included on almost every tour of the city are Wat Pra Keo, Wat Po and Wat Arun.

This page lists all of the significant temples of the city, as well as some of the more interesting places that aren't on the main tourist trail. You can book tours to the major temples in advance through our travel partner Viator.

For additional information on Thai Buddhist temples, see our pages on Temple Terminology and Temple Ettiquette. Most big temples have a least one annual temple fair. These are excellent times to see a bit of the "real" Thailand.

Wat Arun
On the east bank of the Chaophraya River, the temple pre-dates the founding of Bangkok as the capital. You can reach the temple by ferry from the Tha Thien pier a short walk from Wat Po.
Wat Benjamabophit
Not far from the Dusit Palace is one of the most beautiful temples in Bangkok.
Wat Bowoniwet
Along Phra Sumen road a few blocks from the Banglampu river pier is the important but seldom visited temple of Wat Bowoniwet. The Chinese style of the temple's decorations suggest it was built, or at least rebuilt, around the time of Rama II in the early 19th century.
Wat Chakrawat
This large monastery, one of the three biggest in Bangkok, houses some very unusual buildings as well as a few crocodiles!
Wat Chalerm Phrakiat
On the banks of the Chaophraya River north of Bangkok, King Rama III built a large and impressive temple to commemorate his mother, who once lived in the area. The temple was built within an old fortification built by King Narai of Ayuthaya in the seventeenth century. The outer wall, in particular the side facing the river, still resembles a fortress.
Wat Chana Songkram
Tucked away in the center of the backpacker are of Banglampu is the temple of Wat Chana Songkram. People often use the temple as a shortcut between Khao San Road and the river without ever stopping to take a closer look. Big mistake.
Wat Dhammamongkon
Bangkok's tallest temple, with a 95-meter high tower modeled on the place where Buddha attained enlightenment.
Golden Mount (Wat Saket)
Just outside the old royal city precincts, Rama III tried to build a large chedi to mark the city's entrance, but it collapsed under its own weight before it was completed. Later kings capped the mound of bricks and mud with a golden chedi, giving the man-made mountain its name.
Wat Hua Lampong
This busy temple a short distance from the Silom Road business and entertainment district give you a chance to see what a 'normal' temple looks like.
Wat Indrawiharn
There's no hiding why this temple is still on some tourist itineraries. The giant 32-meter (100-foot) tall standing Buddha statue used to be visible from far away.
Wat Kalayanamit
If you spend any time on the river as you explore Bangkok, you can hardly miss Wat Kalayanamit, with its massive wiharn close by the river on the Thonburi side.
Wat Kanikaphon
This small temple in Bangkok's Chinatown has some interesting details, but its main claim to fame is the fact it was founded by a former madame who owned a brothel.
Loha Prasat (Wat Ratchanadda)
Near the Golden Mount, but just inside the old city walls, is Wat Ratchanadda. Here Rama III started another project. A very unusual building now called the Loha Prasat. Within the same temple is a popular amulet market that makes an interesting place to browse.
Wat Mahathat
As the center of the Mahanikai school of Buddhism, this busy temple near the Grand Palace is an interesting and quiet place to get away from the crowds around the Grand Palace.
Wat Mangkon Kamalawat
At the heart of Bangkok's Chinatown is the Chinese-Buddhist temple of Wat Mangkon Kamalawat, known in Chinese as Wat Leng Nui Yee. The temple is the center of festivities during important festivals such as Chinese new years and the vegetarian festival.
Wat Molilokayaram
Tucked away just inside the Bangkok Yai canal, right behind the Pom Wichai Prasit Fort is the small temple of Wat Molilokayaram, dating from the time when Ayutthaya was the capital of Siam.
Wat Pathum Wanaram
Set in the midst of Bangkok's biggest shopping area is the strangely serene temple of Wat Pathum Wanaram. Its a sort of multi-layered temple that only reveals all its sights bit by bit.
Wat Pichai Yathikaram
A short walk from Wat Prayoon or the Princess Mother Memorial Park is the large temple of Wat Pichai Yathikaram. You can see the towering prang of the temple from the river, but in fact the temple itself is a somewhat forgotten corner of old Bangkok and is worth a visit if you're checking out some of the other sights in this part of the city.
Wat Po (Temple of the Reclining Buddha)
Immediately south of the Grand Palace lies Wat Jetuphon, commonly known as Wat Po. Its actually the oldest temple in Bangkok, having been established in the 16th century. It was extensively remodeled by the early Chakri kings who made it Bangkok's first center of public education.
Wat Phra Kaeo (Temple of the Emerald Buddha)
The Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Keo) within the Grand Palace is a sort of national cathedral, housing one of the country's most sacred objects. As such, entry is free to Thais but foreigners must pay an entry fee (400 Baht, about US$12). The temple is enclosed by a cloister like gallery painted with scenes from the Ramakien, the Thai epic based on the Hindu Ramayana.
Wat Prayoon
One of Bangkok's quirkier temples on the opposite bank of the Chaophraya River. Its main feature is an unusual mound surrounded by a large pool full of turtles.
Wat Rakhang
Across the river from the Grand Palace is this small temple founded by the first king of Bangkok, Rama I. Within the grounds of the temple is a small house, now used to store scriptures, that was used by King Rama I before he was crowned.
Wat Ratchabophit
Not far from Wat Po, this temple displays an unusual mixture of Thai, European Gothic and Chinese design.
Wat Ratchapradit
This crowded little temple lies behind Saranrom Park, not far from the Grand Palace and Wat Po. It was built by Rama IV (King Mongkhut, 1851 to 1868).
Wat Suan Plu
Highlights a small not-so-hidden temple near one of the city's largest hotels. Wat Suan Plu has yet to be "spoiled" by the modernizations that have beset many of the city's temples.
Wat Suthat
Its a bit off the tourist trail these days, but Wat Suthat is still a very important temple to the Thais. This is the home of the Brahmin priest who oversee royal rituals such as the ploughing ceremony held at the traditional beginning of the growing season.
Wat Thong Noppakhun
Significantly off the tourist trail, this old and unusual temple on the Thonburi side of the river is part of a very interesting collection of temples and Chinese houses around Klong San.
Wat Thong Thammachat
This old Ayutthaya era temple is set in a small patch of trees near the Wang Lee Mansion.
Wat Traimit (Temple of the Golden Buddha)
Sort of a "one hit wonder," this temple is home to the world's largest solid gold Buddha image.
Wat Yannawa
Sited very near the Taksin Bridge Skytrain station, this temple's notable feature is its unusual wiharn shaped like a Chinese junk.