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Wat Pho (Temple of the Reclining Buddha)

#2 in Best Things To Do in Bangkok

Wat Pho picture in Bangkok
OSTILL / Getty Images

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  • Churches/Religious Sites, Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing Type
  • 1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
4.5
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    4.5
  • Facilities
    4.0
  • Atmosphere
    5.0

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The Temple of the Reclining Buddha, known as Wat Pho in Thai, is a Buddhist temple complex which is most known for its gold-plated "Reclining Buddha" sculpture. The Buddha measures 151 feet long and is 50 meters tall, making it the largest reclining Buddha statue in Thailand. The complex also houses the most Buddha's in all of Thailand. Along with the famous reclining Buddha, Wat Pho features a whopping 394 Buddhas that can be found spread out between four different chapels on-site.

In between all of the opulent statues, ornate pagodas and striking stonework spread throughout, you might be surprised to learn that you can get a massage here. In addition to being a place of worship, Wat Pho is also an education center that focuses on traditional medicine and massage therapy. You'll definitely be in for a cultural experience should you choose to do so, but make sure to research what a Thai massage is before you go (they're generally considered pretty painful by American standards). 

Most travelers didn't go the extra mile to get a massage, saying the sights and sounds of the temple were enough of a cultural experience. Visitors were blown away by the grandeur of the reclining Buddha and enjoyed admiring the other decorative aspects of the temple. Should you choose to visit, travelers strongly recommend visiting in the morning to avoid crowds and dodge oppressive afternoon temperatures. It's also important to note that you are required to adhere to a certain dress code: shoes are to be taken off and your knees and shoulders must be covered. 

You'll find this temple right across the street from the Grand Palace. The best way to get here is via the Chao Phraya Express Boat, as it stops right in front of the temple. If you're traveling via Skytrain, the closest stop is Hua Lamphong, which is about 2 miles southeast of the attraction. Wat Pho is open daily from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., and the cost per person is 100 baht (about $3). For more information, consult the temple's official website (in Thai). 

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