Wat Pho Overview

Visit one of the most popular places in Bangkok, Wat Pho, which is well known for its truly majestic and largest Reclining Buddha statue in the city and is housed on the western edge of the temple complex. Apart from this statue, the temple boasts of having the largest collection of Buddha images in Thailand making it a significant place.

Wat Pho happens to be one of the most fascinating temple complexes as well as a popular tourist attraction to add to your Thailand tour package from India, which is located in the premises of The Grand Palace. This place is known for being the headquarters of teaching and preservation of Traditional Thai Medicine and Research. However, the centre of attraction of the temple is the largest statue of the reclining Buddha and for this the temple is also called the Temple of Reclining Buddha.

The temple is spread over an area of 8 hectares and was constructed by King Rama I as a Buddhist place of worship. During the reign of King Rama III, it was considered to be the centre of healing and known to be the very first university of Thailand. The temple is still considered to be a place of healing and the monks practise many traditional healing actions. The statue of the reclining Buddha is about 45 meters long and 15 meters high making it one of the largest statues in Thailand.

The statue of Buddha is inlaid with many precious stones and about 108 signs of truth. The earlobes of the statue signify noble birth whereas the lotus bed configuration of the hand signifies purity and beauty. Apart from the reclining statue, the temple is home to a number of Buddha images that are sourced from various parts of the world.

It is truly a sight to behold and if you are an art lover then you will truly be stunned by the work of the intricate art. Wat Pho is also called as the birthplace of relaxing Thai massage. Being a centre of knowledge and learning in diverse fields, you will come across many inscriptions and illustrations serving as the instruction for the massage therapists. The temple has two separate pavilions in the complex that are used as classrooms for practising skills and the other one is used to receive the massage treatment.

Architecture of Wat Pho

The architecture of Wat Pho is similar to that of the Ayutthayan and many of the present structures in the Wat Pho are bought from the remains of the temple town. Apart from Ayutthayan style of architecture, you will also come across some of the other buildings and complexes designed in varied architectural styles.

At the centre of the temple, you will come across an enormous statue of a reclining Buddha with his feet inlaid with a mother of peal. This place has beautiful marble interiors as well as more than 1000 Buddha images and statues that are sourced from various parts of the world. The impressive Chinese stones are worth a notice during your exploration tour. There are some statues in the complex that depict the European style of architecture guarding the gates with the compound. 

History of Wat Pho

The origins of Wat Pho are majorly unknown but as per beliefs this majestic structure was in existence much before 1782. King I moved the capital of Siam to Bangkok and ordered a complete restoration of the old temple site. Many of the Buddha images were removed from the temples that were abandoned in other parts of Thailand and were reinstalled at Wat Pho which was originally called Wat Photaram. Wat Pho is considered to be the very first public university of Thailand and has remnants of the first four Chakri Kings. The major highlights of the temple are the Bodhi Tree that is believed to be the sacred tree in Bodh Gaya and the largest reclining statue of Buddha. This place preserves the legacy of the Chakri Dynasty and is also considered to be a repository of the Thai culture, art, and knowledge.


• One of the largest monuments dedicated to Buddhism in Thailand on the banks of Chao Phraya River.
• Popularly known as the temple of Reclining Buddha that is about 151 meters long and 50 meters high.
• With three names, Wat Pho, Wat Phra Chetun, and Temple of Reclining Buddha, it is the centre of traditional Thai Medicine and Thai Massage.
• Being the birthplace of Thai Massage, experts offer lessons to students enrolled.
• Built in Ayutthaya Style of architecture and has got many structures from the salvaged remains of the temple town of Ayutthaya.

How To Reach

By BTS/MRT: Sanam Chai MRT Station on the MRT Blue Line is the station closest to Wat Pho. Reach this station from various parts of Bangkok and then get down and walk for around 6 minutes to reach the south entrance of Wat Pho, which is closer to the MRT Station.

By Tuk-tuk: If you are coming from nearby places where there is no MRT or BTS, you can take a tuk-tuk and reach the place.

By Taxi: Take a taxi from any part of the city to reach Wat Pho hassle-free. Make sure they use a meter when they take you along.

By Boat: Take a Chao Phraya Express Boat orange-flagged boat or no-flag boat going southbound to reach Tha Tien Pier. Get off the boat and walk for 3 minutes to reach the northern entrance of Wat Pho.


Best Time To Visit

The best time to visit Wat Pho is during early hours of the temple, when the crowd is less, as many tour buses arrive here after 10 am, or you can also visit the place early evening during 4pm to enjoy a hassle free view of the famous reclining Buddha statue at the golden hour.

Other Essential Information

Places to stay near Wat Pho

1. Riva Arun Bangkok: Riva Arun Bangkok is a popular place to stay near Wat Pho because of its bright rooms and suites that are elegantly decorated. You will get to enjoy the pristine views of the river from the elegant rooftop as well as relish delectable local and international cuisines at the inhouse restaurant.

2. ISSARA by d HOSTEL Bangkok: ISSARA by d HOSTEL Bangkok offers guests with simple dorms as well as private rooms in a casual setting. You will be provided with complimentary breakfast during your stay. The best part of this place is its rooftop terrace from where you can capture beautiful views of the surroundings. 

3. RALPH Bangkok: RALPH Bangkok is a modern place of accommodation near Wat Pho that not only gives you a chance to spend your vacation in elegance but also gives you a chance to indulge in the thriving nightlife. 

Tips to Visit Wat Pho

-It is a sacred place where all sorts of religious rites and rituals are performed and for that reason it is suggested to be calm during your visit. You should speak softly and politely. 

-You should respect the image of Buddha and should make sure that you keep yourself as well as your children from touching or stepping on them. 

-As per the guidelines, only the permitted workers are allowed to climb up to the statue in order to clean and offer prayers. 

-You should follow the proper dress code of the place and should avoid wearing clothes above your knees. 

-If you feel you are not appropriately dressed, you can either purchase or rent a sarong outside the temple. 

-You should remember to take off your shoes before entering any sacred building.

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Normal Timings:
08:00 AM to 06:30 PM
Normal Timings:
08:00 AM to 06:30 PM
Normal Timings:
08:00 AM to 06:30 PM
Normal Timings:
08:00 AM to 06:30 PM
Normal Timings:
08:00 AM to 06:30 PM
Normal Timings:
08:00 AM to 06:30 PM
Normal Timings:
08:00 AM to 06:30 PM
Point of Interest for Wat Pho
Chedis Dedicated to the Four Kings

Chedis Dedicated to the Four Kings

The complex grounds contain four incredible chedis, 91 little chedis, two towers, a bot (main place of worship), various viharas (lobbies), and different structures like galleries, just as nurseries and a little sanctuary gallery. The four biggest chedis are dedicated to the first four rulers in the Chakri dynasty. These chedis also hold some of the remains of King Rama I through King Rama IV. Compositionally the chedis and structures in the complex are distinctive in style and size.

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Missakawan Park

Missakawan Park

It is a little garden in the temple complex having a lush green lawn and other trees on the pathways and boundaries. The focal point of the nursery is a bodhi tree that was engendered from the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi tree in Sri Lanka that is accepted to have initially come from a tree in India where Buddha sat while waiting to be enlightened. It also consists of a small chapel with a buddha covered in gold in a sitting position. Various other structures guard the chapel.

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Phra Mondop

Phra Mondop

Phra Mondop or the ho trai is the Scripture Hall containing a little library of Buddhist sacred texts. The structure isn't for the most part open to people in general as the sacred texts, which are recorded on palm leaves, should be kept in a controlled climate for protection. The library was created by King Rama III. Guarding its passage are figures called Yak Wat Pho ('Wat Pho's Giants') put in alongside the doors. Around Phra Mondop are three structures with painting canvases of the start of Ramayana.

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Phra Ubosot

Phra Ubosot

Phra Ubosot (Phra Uposatha) or bot is the appointment corridor, the fundamental lobby utilized for performing Buddhist ceremonies, and the holiest structure of the complex. It was built by King Rama I in the Ayuthaya-style and later extended and recreated in the Rattanakosin-style by Rama III. The bot was dedicated in 1791, preceding the modification of Wat Pho was completed. This structure is raised on a marble stage, and the ubosot lies in the middle of the yard encased by a twofold house (Phra Rabiang). Inside the ubosot is a gold and gem layered platform finished off with a Buddha made of a gold-copper compound, and over the sculpture is a nine-layered umbrella addressing the authority of Thailand.

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Vihara of the Reclining Buddha

Vihara of the Reclining Buddha

The viharn or wihan contains the leaning Buddha and was built under the rule of Rama III copying the Ayutthaya style. The inside is enlivened with boards of the mural.

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Thai Massage

Thai Massage

Wat Pho was the very first state-funded college in Thailand, and has spent significant time in religion, science, and philosophy since 1955. It is currently more notable as a middle for customary massage and medication. In the event that you've never had a conventional Thai massage, Wat Pho is a decent spot to encounter it. This is an exceptionally well-known practice at Wat Pho. To its achievements, Wat Pho’s massage has been enlisted in UNESCO’s intangible cultural heritages.

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Bodhi tree

Bodhi tree

In a little park close to the house of Reclining Buddha you will discover a Bodhi tree that is a distant offspring of the Bodhi tree from Bodhgaya in India under which the Buddha was enlightened. The 20 sections of the land sanctuary complex comprise two walled parts isolated by a street. The North end nearest the Grand Palace contains the principal structures like the ubosot, the viharns, and the Reclining Buddha.

The soles of the Buddha’s feet

The soles of the Buddha’s feet

The soles of the Buddha's feet that are around 3 meters high and just about 5 meters in length are decorated with a mother of pearl in 108 fragments, appearing exhaustively the 108 lakshanas or propitious qualities of the Buddha. Along with the Phra Phuttha Saiyat picture, you will track down coordination with 108 bronze dishes, where individuals give coins accepted to bring luck.

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Wat Pho FAQs

What are the characteristics of Wat Pho?

Wat Pho, the temple of the reclining Buddha is one of the most sought after tourist destinations where you will get to witness the gold plated sculpture of the reclining Buddha. The sculpture measures about 151 feet long and is about 50 meters tall. It is one of the largest sculptures of Gautam Buddha in Thailand. This place is very well known for traditional Thai Massage which is considered as the cultural art for curing the body.

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What is the meaning of Wat Pho?

Wat Pho means the Bodhi Tree situated in Bodh Gaya, India. It symbolises two layers present in the same space. The temple is dedicated to the Reclining Buddha and is considered to be the centre of the world of Buddhism as per the beliefs in Trailokya Winitchai. It is also home to a School of Thai Medicine and is considered to be the birthplace of the famous Traditional Thai Massage.

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Why was Wat Pho built?

The temple of Wat Pho was constructed in the year 1788 during the reign of Rama I. The king wished to make it large and a notable monument for Buddhism. There are about 1000 different images of Buddha along with the reclining statue. You will also get to learn more about traditional Thai Medicine from the experts at this place.

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