Wat Arun

Vacation Travel Guide
Wat Arun which includes a temple or place of worship as well as a large group of people

The high, Khmer-style tower of the “Temple of Dawn” is one of Bangkok’s most photographed landmarks... at sunset!

The historic significance, ornate design and beautiful views make Wat Arun worth the short ferry trip across the Chao Phraya River from the Grand Palace/Wat Pho. Position yourself on the opposite side of the river at sunset to get a striking photograph of its impressive silhouette against a reddening sky.

The original building was a modest shrine. King Taksin established the capital on the site in the 18th century and built an ornate temple for the sacred Emerald Buddha statue. When he saw it was the first building to catch the morning light, he named it “Temple of Dawn”; “Aruna” is the Indian god of dawn and “wat” means temple. In 1782, King Rama I moved the capital to the other side of the river and took the statue with him. The temple’s Khmer-style towers were added by his two successors in the early 19th century.

The four-corner pagoda, or “prang,” is an architectural representation of mythical Mount Meru, the center of the world in Buddhist cosmology. Get up close to see the tiny pieces of porcelain and colored glass that give the roof its shine. Climb the stairs part way up the spire for a view across the city. On your way out, check out the statues of monkeys, demons and incarnations of Buddha. Head inside to see the golden Buddha with the ashes of King Rama II interred at its base. Also worth a look are the murals featuring depictions of the spiritual teacher Prince Siddhartha encountering the different stages of life.

Wat Arun is one of the few Bangkok highlights on the western side of the river. The temple is open daily and there is an admission fee. Take the cross-river ferry at Tha Tien pier from the Grand Palace; the ride takes a few minutes and is inexpensive. If you arrive later in the day, remember to stay on the eastern side of the river to watch the sun set behind the temple.

Top Hotels Close to Wat Arun

Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers - SHA Plus
Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers - SHA Plus
5 out of 5
2 Charoen Krung Soi 30, Siphya, Bangkok, Bangkok
The price is $53 per night from Feb 6 to Feb 7
Located in Bangkok City Centre, this luxury hotel is steps from Si Phraya Pier and River City Shopping Complex. Iconsiam is 1.6 mi (2.5 km) away. Hua Lamphong ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (995 reviews)
"Great location, excellent service"

Reviewed on Apr 8, 2021

Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers - SHA Plus
Shangri-La Bangkok - SHA Plus
Shangri-La Bangkok - SHA Plus
5 out of 5
89 Soi Wat Suan Plu, New Road, Bangrak, Bangkok, Bangkok
The price is $106 per night from Jan 29 to Jan 30
Located in Bangkok City Centre, this luxury hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Iconsiam, King Power MahaNakhon, and Asiatique The Riverfront. Erawan Shrine and Siam ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (1,151 reviews)
"Room view was gorgeous. Staff were very friendly and exceptionally helpful. We had a late flight and they gave us a 6pm checkout which was so helpful especially as we had a little 3 year old to deal with. The pool/restaurant overlooking the river is stunning. Only criticism - and it may be less that ..."

Reviewed on Jan 11, 2022

Shangri-La Bangkok - SHA Plus
Millennium Hilton Bangkok - SHA Plus
Millennium Hilton Bangkok - SHA Plus
5 out of 5
123 Charoennakorn Road, Klongsan, Bangkok, Bangkok
The price is $62 per night from Jan 28 to Jan 29
This family-friendly Bangkok hotel is located on the waterfront, within 3 mi (5 km) of Iconsiam, Wat Pho and Wat Arun. Khaosan Road and Asiatique The Riverfront ...
4.2/5 Very Good! (981 reviews)
"Clean room, good view"

Reviewed on Jan 5, 2022

Millennium Hilton Bangkok - SHA Plus
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Plan a trip to see Wat Arun

Sofitel Bangkok Sukhumvit - SHA Plus
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Best Lodging Options Near Wat Arun

Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers - SHA Plus
Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers - SHA Plus
5 out of 5
2 Charoen Krung Soi 30, Siphya, Bangkok, Bangkok
The price is $53 per night from Feb 6 to Feb 7
Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers - SHA Plus
Shangri-La Bangkok - SHA Plus
Shangri-La Bangkok - SHA Plus
5 out of 5
89 Soi Wat Suan Plu, New Road, Bangrak, Bangkok, Bangkok
The price is $106 per night from Jan 29 to Jan 30
Shangri-La Bangkok - SHA Plus
Millennium Hilton Bangkok - SHA Plus
Millennium Hilton Bangkok - SHA Plus
5 out of 5
123 Charoennakorn Road, Klongsan, Bangkok, Bangkok
The price is $62 per night from Jan 28 to Jan 29
Millennium Hilton Bangkok - SHA Plus
sala rattanakosin - SHA Plus
sala rattanakosin - SHA Plus
4 out of 5
Maharat Road, Rattanakosin Island, Bangkok, Bangkok
The price is $73 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
sala rattanakosin - SHA Plus
Riva Arun Bangkok
Riva Arun Bangkok
4 out of 5
392/25-26 Maharaj Road, Phraborom Maharajawang, Pranakorn, Bangkok
The price is $59 per night from Jan 24 to Jan 25
Riva Arun Bangkok
ARUN Riverside Bangkok
ARUN Riverside Bangkok
3.5 out of 5
87-89 Maharaj Road, Phrabarommaharachawaang, Bangkok, Phranakorn
The price is $138 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
ARUN Riverside Bangkok
Inn A Day
Inn A Day
3.5 out of 5
57-61 Maharat Road, Phra nakhon, Bangkok, Bangkok
Inn A Day
Sala Arun
Sala Arun
3.5 out of 5
47-49 Soi Phen Pi Marn, Tha Tien, Phrabarommaharajchawang, Pranakorn, Bangkok
Sala Arun
Arun Residence
Arun Residence
3.5 out of 5
36-38 Soi Pratoo Nok Yoong, Maharat Road, Rattanakosin Island, Bangkok, Bangkok
Arun Residence
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.