After a few posts of where to eat and things to do. Today I would like to recommend the 5 MUST visit temples in Chiangmai. As an old city in Chiangmai, there are lots of temples. It’s not possible to visit all of them in a few days and guess you might not know which should be worth to visit or they might look all similar to you. I have posted a Secret Jungle Temple in Wat Pha Lat which is a little far away from the city. However the below were situated in the old city and it takes you only a few walks if you already in the city. Thus if you plan your trip in Chiangmai for only 3-4 days, it probably takes you 2 days to visit all of my recommended temples. So let me introduce the first MUST Visit Temple – Wat Lok Molee.
MUST VISIT TEMPLE #1 – Wat Lok Molee
Wat – Thai language means Temple. Wat Lok Molee is situated next to the busy street near northern Chang Phuak city gate. It was originally built in 1367 CE, the Mengrai Dynasty. Monks were used to spread their teachings in the temple and they were housed in here as well. Wat Lok Molee probably is the oldest temple in the city. The Wat is free for entry so doesn’t looks like a few temples which you have to pay. There were 2 elephants at the entrance gate, they seems like a guard to protect the Wat. The fine details of the elephant cravings was breathtaking.
When I was there it’s about 07:00 p.m and there’s no one but only myself. (well my hubby was being in foot massage as he have not interest at all!) Anyways, I enjoyed so much myself walking around this temple. The temple kept open until night and whole environment is so serene. There were 2 silver trees at entrance and believe that was like a wish tree as I found the notes on a silver leaf. I guess they wish one day the god might hear it and fulfill their needs?
Something you need to know before you step into the temple. You shall take off your shoes , and make sure you wear properly(short pants or sleeveness were not allow) and keep quiet while you were visiting in order to respect the buddha. There was huge, almost 4 ft tall gold buddha statue in the centre of the temple. The crafting was so beautiful and the whole environment was so peaceful and stunning. You can see how they respect the Buddha with such an amazing temple.
At the back of the temple, there were several animals sculptures in the garden. Originally I did’t realize there were 12 but then I counted I realized they were the 12 zodiac. How amazing this was!
When I passed by the 12 zodiacs, there was another little gate lead to the back of the pagoda. The pagoda was built fully in brick and it’s about 10 ft high. It’s so tall and there were a few monks being worship in front of it. There were a few tourists so I guess this is not a popular tourist spot but it was one of my favorite temple which is worth to visit. I’m not sure if it is better to visit in the afternoon or at night but I love how it looks at night with only a few spot lights from the ground. I can feel the mysterious and the serene atmosphere.
It looks like a GOLDEN temple at night! There were different buddha statue around the pagoda on each tiered! The monk as mentioned above they usually worship at the below area. (at the bottom of the pagoda) There were also several silver trees at both sides.
When I left the temple, I looked back and it surprised me as I saw the 2 tall status at the back entrance. I felt so incredible how detail this temple was. It is not big and almost took only 20 minutes to walk through the whole area. The details just made me fall in love with it.
I would highly recommend anyone to go and have a visit. I don’t think it’s about religious believe though if you are christian or any other religion believers, as it is to appreciate the architecture of art in different countries. When I travel I love to understand the cultural behind the city and the historical of it. Every country have their own story behind and that’s also the reason how tourist fall in love to. This way to travel will open my eyes to the world.
The rest of the 5 MUST VISIT temple will post later. Stay tuned!
How to get there?
Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
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