Also known as the Temple of the Dawns, the magnificent Wat Arun sits triumphantly on the bank of the Chao Phraya river. The temple, regarded as one of Bangkok’s most impressive and distinctive landmarks, has existed since the 17th century with later architectural additions. However, a Buddhist temple has existing on this site since the Ayutthaya Kingdom when it was known as Wat Makok. King Rama 11 ordered the restoration of the temple and extended the height of the pagoda to 70 metres. It was a former home of the Emerald Buddha before it was moved on royal instructions to Wat Phra Kaew within the walls of the Grand Palace on the opposite side of the river.
Interestingly, Wat Arun once sat within the grounds of a royal palace during the reign of King Taksin. It is easy to visit Wat Arun by river transport. Expect to pay a small ‘landing fee’ at the temple’s river jetty.