The north side of the ordination hall.
On the Chaophraya river, almost facing the Grand Palace, is a small ancient temple now called Wat Rakhang Kositharam. The temple dates from the Ayutthaya period, but was significantly rebuilt during the reign of King Rama I at the end of the 18th century.
The bells which give the temple its name.
The temple's name means 'bell' and comes from the incident early in the Bangkok period, when a large bell was unearthed during some construction at the temple. King Rama II had the bell moved to the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, and bequeathed five smaller bells to the temple. These are now housed in a large bell tower in one corner of the temple compound.
The scripture house of King Rama I.
Facing the bell tower, set in a garden with two large trees for shade, is a ho trai that itself is very significant. The elegant little house was part of the home of King Rama I before he was crowned. The building was donated to the temple to be converted into a scripture hall.
The building still houses scriptures, stored in large lacquer and gilt cabinets. The center of the three buildings has a huge portrait of King Rama I. The walls are painted with scenes from the Ramakien. People often come here to pray to the king.
Wat Rakhang is easily reached by Chao Phraya Express Boat. Alight at the Wang Lung (Sirirat) pier. Make your way through the market and walk south along the small lane that parallels the river. The temple will be at the end of the lane.