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Wat Pho

The \u201CTemple of the Reclining Buddha\u201D is the largest temple in the country and has more Buddha statues than any other Thai temple.

Wat Po is one of the top attractions in Bangkok for Thai people and tourists alike. The large temple is famous for its giant Reclining Buddha and has more Buddha statues than any other temple in the country. It is also one of the oldest public universities in the country and the official school of traditional Thai massage.

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The temple is officially called Wat Phra Chetuphon Vimolmangklararm Rajwaramahaviharn, which explains why most non-Thai speakers refer to it as \u201CThe Temple of the Reclining Buddha.\u201D The Thai abbreviation Wat Pho comes from Wat Phodharam, a lost monastery of the Ayutthaya period. King Rama I of the Chakri dynasty had the temple re-established, which took nearly eight years. King Rama III spent another 16 years restoring and extending it and King Rama IV gave it its present name.

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When you enter the hall where the 150-foot (46-meter) long Reclining Buddha rests, drop a coin into one of the bronze bowls for good fortune. The 108 bowls represent the 108 different positive characters of the Buddha. The resting statue itself is covered in gold leaf and represents the Buddha passing into nirvana. Look for the mother-of-pearl inlays on the soles of his giant feet.

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While this figure is the biggest attraction, you\u2019ll find more than a thousand Buddha statues in the complex. The medical university on the temple\u2019s grounds is a school for traditional medicine and, more famously, Thai massage. Bring extra baht to experience an invigorating rub. Visit the library, which is decorated with shards of porcelain, and don\u2019t miss the ancient descriptions of massage techniques. Cross the road to visit the working monastery and talk with the monks; they love to practice their English.

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Wat Pho is next to the Grand Palace and the same dress code applies: cover your arms legs and feet before you step inside. The easiest way to get there is by ferry or taxi. There is an admission fee and guided tours are available. The temple is open daily.


Guide to Exploring around Wat Pho


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Lodging Near Wat Pho

See all 2,438 Hotels near Wat Pho
Shangri-la Bangkok $162
Shangri-la Bangkok

Shangri-la Bangkok

89 Soi Wat Suan Plu, New Road, Bangkok
     
    4.6
    of 5, from 1,968 reviews
    5.0 out of 5.0

    This family-friendly Bangkok hotel is located on a river, within 1 mi (2 km) of Sri Mariamman Temple, Asiatique the River Front, and Saint Louis Hospital. Patpong Night Market and Lumpini Park are also within 2 mi (3 km).

    sala rattanakosin $74
    sala rattanakosin

    sala rattanakosin

    Maharat Road, Bangkok
       
      4.3
      of 5, from 171 reviews
      4.0 out of 5.0

      Located in Phra Nakhon, this boutique hotel is steps from Reclining Buddha and Wat Pho. Wat Arun and Grand Palace are also within 15 minutes.

      Sala Arun $70
      Sala Arun

      Sala Arun

      47-49 Soi Phen Pi Marn, Tha Tien, Bangkok
         
        4.5
        of 5, from 14 reviews
        3.5 out of 5.0

        Located in Phra Nakhon, this hotel is steps from Reclining Buddha and Wat Pho. Wat Arun and Grand Palace are also within 15 minutes.

        Riva Arun Bangkok
        Riva Arun Bangkok

        Riva Arun Bangkok

        392/25-26 Maharaj Road, Bangkok
           
          4.6
          of 5, from 139 reviews
          4.0 out of 5.0

          Located in Phra Nakhon, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Wat Pho and Museum of Siam. Grand Palace and Temple of the Emerald Buddha are also within 15 minutes.

          Arom d Hostel
          Arom d Hostel

          Arom d Hostel

          336 Maharaj road, Phranakorn, Bangkok
             
            3.0 out of 5.0
            Chetuphon Gate $31
            Chetuphon Gate

            Chetuphon Gate

            370-372 Soi Pratoo Nokyoong, Bangkok
               
              3.9
              of 5, from 28 reviews
              3.0 out of 5.0

              Located in Phra Nakhon, this hotel is steps from Reclining Buddha and Wat Pho. Grand Palace and Wat Arun are also within 10 minutes.

              Inn A Day
              Inn A Day

              Inn A Day

              57-61 Maharat Road, Bangkok
                 
                5.0
                of 5, from 1 reviews
                3.5 out of 5.0

                Located in Phra Nakhon, this boutique hotel is steps from Reclining Buddha and Wat Pho. Wat Arun and Grand Palace are also within 15 minutes.

                Arun Residence $80
                Arun Residence

                Arun Residence

                36-38 Soi Pratoo Nok Yoong, Bangkok
                   
                  4.1
                  of 5, from 76 reviews
                  3.5 out of 5.0

                  Located in Phra Nakhon, this boutique hotel is steps from Reclining Buddha and Wat Pho. Wat Arun and Grand Palace are also within 15 minutes.