Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho)
The gigantic golden Buddha statue is the largest in Thailand, measuring 151 feet (46 meters) long and 50 feet (15 meters) tall. After admiring the statue, enter the temple proper—the oldest in Thailand—and explore the whole Wat Pho compound, home to artwork and Buddha images. You can even enjoy a traditional Thai massage.
Most city and temple tours visit the temple, alongside Wat Arun, Wat Traimit, the Gem Gallery, and Chinatown on half-day tours. Alternatively, join a sunset or night bike tour to the temple or board a longtail boat to arrive via the Chao Phraya River.
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Things to Know Before You Go
The temple is most often visited on half-day sightseeing tours of Bangkok.
You can get an on-site massage at the Temple of the Reclining Buddha.
The site is not easily accessible for wheelchair users.
Dress conservatively—visitors shouldn't wear shorts or low-cut tops, and women must cover their arms.
How to Get There
The reclining Buddha and famous Thai massage school can be found on the northern side of the Wat Pho compound, while the temple's monastic facilities are located in the southern compound. The easiest way to access the temple is on a guided tour or by boat—take the Chao Phraya River Express to the Tha Thien pier. The temple is located next to the Grand Palace and behind the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew).
When to Get There
Visit during the morning or evening to beat the heat and crowds of the middle of the day. Alternatively, take an atmospheric sunset tour of the area, many of which stop by the temple complex.
The Reclining Buddha
The largest of its kind in Thailand, the Reclining Buddha statue is a sight to behold. The Buddha's feet alone are 16 feet (5 meters) tall, both exquisitely decorated with the 108 auspicious characteristics of the true Buddha and inlaid with mother-of-pearl. Symbolically, the reclining Buddha represents the Buddha during his final illness, prior to reaching parinirvana.
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