Explore The Breathtaking Temples In Thailand

The Must-Do Activity On The Thai Trips Itinerary


Temples in Thailand

Thailand is known to have a wide range of temples all around the incredibly beautiful country and foster a calm, peaceful feeling. Thai temples are a must-visit visiting spot of every tourist trip, and rightfully so. Temples, also known as 'Wat,' are more than 40,000 in Thailand, each offering something different, something unique.

From various sections to mind-blowing architecture, mesmerizing interiors, breathtaking Buddha statues and images, along with libraries, Monk stations, scriptures and much more. Temples in Thailand are all placed in different areas, some on the hilltop, while some are close to floating markets, some surrounded by lush green jungles and some facing the beach; every Thai temple has a different aura, feel and scenic beauty to it.

Buddhist temples in Thailand not only play a vital role as a sacred religious place but plays an active part in their day-to-day lives in the form of Merit Making and helping the inmates to get good karma.

However, with that said, it's nearly impossible to visit all the temples in Thailand in one trip. To avoid 'Wat Burnout,' it is recommended to plan the trip accordingly to get a good mix of Thai temple visits without burnout or missing some gems.

Hence to ease the planning, we have created a list of top Buddhist temples in Thailand that will elevate the trips exponentially and while fostering a feeling of good spiritual energy and peacefulness.


Temples in Thailand


Top Temples in Thailand

Narrowing the list to some few twenties, here is a mix of Thai temples that are located in different locations, having distinctive styles and offer something unique compared to thousands of Buddhist Thai temples Thailand has to offer. So without further ado, here is the list of Must-visit Temples in Thailand (mentioned city-wise in an alphabetical order to avoid any biasness).



Wat Mahathat

Wat Mahathat is one of the most popular Thai temples in Ayutthaya, located at the center of the historical park; the temple is surrounded by hundreds of stunning ruins, making it a great tourist attraction spot.

This temple is most famous for its stone head of Buddha, which is locked in a tree root, elevating the overall charm of the temple exponentially. And that’s not all; the temple also houses an impressive ubosot (ordination hall) and main viharn (the living quarters) area, amongst the beautiful ground that the temple stands on. In fact, despite being centuries old and have its central prang collapsed ages ago, the temple still stands strong, provides solace to people and welcomes visitors wholeheartedly.


Wat Mahathat


Wat Chaiwatthanaram

Another famous Thai temple has been part of the land for centuries ago but officially dates back to 1987 in records when its restoration started. The first proper restoration in 1987 marked the resurfacing of Wat Chaiwatthanaram glory; it completely transformed this Thai temple from a looted ruin to an attractive place of worship and now a tourist spot.

This temple is located in the Ayutthaya Historical Park and the west bank of the Chao Phraya River, with a larger complex than the previous temple. This temple in Thailand is significant to the Buddhist community as it offers insight and knowledge regarding Buddhism and the great Buddha. 

As for the temple’s architecture, it is has a traditional Khmer style, with the complex central prang and eight chedi-like temples. The interior of the temple contains imagery scenes of the life of Buddha. And that’s not all; the best part of this particular temple is that it has a beautiful sunset view.


Wat Chaiwatthanaram


Wat Ratchaburana

Build by King Boromracha II in the memory of his elder brothers ‘Ay’ and ‘Yi” between the year 1424 to 1448, the Wat Ratchaburana temple is an interesting temple to visit.

The temple was built using inspiration from Khmer and Burmese style, and architecture consists of Chedis, Large prangs, figured stucco, amongst other preserved things. That’s not all; the temple houses remarkable paintings in the two crypts in the lower part of the prang.



Wat Phra Kaew

A popular world-renowned temple in Thailand commonly refers to us as the 'Temple of the Emerald Buddha.' This Thai temple is not only considered an important temple for the country but the Buddhist community around the world. The value of the temple can be identified by the fact that though it is open to the general public but is completely closed when any ritual is being organized by the royal family.

The highlight of this temple is none other than the Emerald Buddha statue that is relatively small than the Buddha statues in other temples. This Buddha statue is carved with jade into a sitting Buddha in a meditation pose.

Though the Emerald Buddha records are lost, the temple itself can be traced back to the 15th century. The temple has a balcony that has large murals of the history of Buddhism in Ramayana style (Hindu mythical style), which elevates the whole experience and leaves visitors awestruck.

There is no denying that this temple in Thailand has sights that are breathtaking, whether it's the architecture, the vibrant history or the Emerald Buddha statue.


Wat Phra Kaew


Wat Pho

Wat Pho is a popular temple amongst people in Bangkok and is referred to by international visitors and guide books as the 'Temple of the Reclining Buddha.' This Thai temple is one of the largest temples Thailand has to offer, making it the must-visit place on the itinerary. The large complex is not all; the true highlight of this temple is none other than 46 meters tall Buddha Statue in a reclining position covered in Gold leaf.

This large temple also has an amazing view and a massage school on its premises and is known to be the best in Thailand, making it a perfect last stop on the Thailand trip. From sight healing to spiritual healing to physical, this Thai temple has everything to offer.


Wat Pho


Wat Arun

Wat Arun temple may not be a well-known temple amongst tourists but is vital to the locals and considered as a local landmark. Located at the bank of the Chao Phraya River, the temple is also known as the 'temple of Dawn,' given the temple a stunning view of the outside, especially from the climbable central prang of the temple.

Speaking of the view inside, what's unique about this temple is that it is made up of spires, unlike other temples. The spires used here stand tall at over 70 meters and have been decorated in colorful small pieces of Chinese porcelain and glass.


Wat Arun


Wat Traimit

This temple in Thailand may not be the most pretty or prestige looking temple, and many people may not want to visit it for that reason, but fortunately enough, it has a significant influx of visitors every year for one solid reason, and that is that temple houses the largest solid gold Buddha statue.

Yes, it's true; despite not having an intriguing architecture of an inquisitive interior, this largest Buddha statue in the world is the highlight of the temple. Weighing around 6 tons with 15 feet height and made up of 83% pure gold, the Buddha statue does the heavy lifting for the temple.

The temple on its own may not have a rich history but has a great library that provides the detailed history of this Buddha statue (how it was plastered for many years to make it look ordinary to prevent it from being stolen) amongst many others. And hey, the visit is not all that bad, around the premise there are other recreational spots, and the view of Thailand and the beach is quite interesting.

Wat Saket

Wat Saket temple dates back to the rule of Ayutthaya from the year 1350 to 1767, hence considered to be one of the ancient temples in Thailand and is honored a lot because of it.

The temple is also known as the 'Temple of the Golden Mount' because, in the gold Chedi, that elevates the whole appeal of the temple. Plus, the Gold Chedi is considered to be a sacred pilgrimage site for the Buddhist community and is flooded by people during the annual temple fair in November.

Some places to look at Wat Saket temple are the main chapel, the incredible library and the ordination hall.



Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Please do not get overwhelmed by its extended name because this Thai temple is the most sacred temple in all of Thailand. Located in the northern regions of Thailand, this temple has been part of the Buddhist culture in the community for centuries; many legends and myths in the Buddhist community surround this very temple.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep was built in the 14th century and is considered to be the ancient Buddhist temple in the world. It houses the stunning seven-headed serpent statues and has the Chiang Saen style golden pagoda, which compliments and elevates the stunning architecture and interior of the temple.

It is definitely a must-visit the temple on our list from its view, historical importance, and the interior-exterior are something to explore in person. At night Wat Phra That Doi Suthep becomes like a bright shining star that radiates light. This Thai temple ideally gets the largest influx of visitors every year, whether it's the beauty of sacredness or both and more.


Wat Phra That Doi Suthep


Wat Sri Suphan

Wat Sri Suphan is a quiet old temple that dates back to over 500 years ago. This Thai temple is a pretty popular one in the country and is also referred to as the Silver Temple. Why? Because the temple is located in the Silver Village in Chiang Mai, and its entire interior and exterior of the main hall are covered with silver.

Over the years, the temple has had its fair share of significant renovations, from turning it into an exquisite piece of architecture and interior glory; this temple is a must-visit. Not only that, it offers solace to Buddhist people and as a school on the premise to teach the young mind the traditions and ideologies of Buddhism.

This temple also features a weekly monk chat programme that interests a lot of visitors. This program familiarizes visitors with monks, Buddhist beliefs and the religion altogether – a great interactive session that is only available in a few of the temples in Thailand.


Wat Sri Suphan


Wat Chiang Man

This is the oldest temple in Chiang Mai, built in the year 1926; each section of the temple is carefully designed and imparts essential information and wisdom. The elephant chedi in this Thai temple was designed in a way that while it sits, it is surrounded by replicas of 15 elephants that seem to emerge from it. 

As for the architecture and interior design, this Thai temple has a mix of Lanna and Singhalese styles. The walls have wood carvings in gold and ochre color; the stairs are guarded with Nagaga, a mythical snake in Buddhism and such other decorative elements that elevate the whole appearance of the temple while paying homage to the mythical stories of the religion.

Touring this temple is a great choice; you get to be familiarized with the history in a unique manner, and it's something about old buildings and complexes and makes the whole experience better.

Wat Phan Tao

This is a very stunning wooden temple in Thailand that has an exquisite mind-blowing decorative garden area. With thousands and thousands of temples in Thailand, this hidden gem is something many people are not familiar with. The pathway is so stunning, from the entryway to the main prayer hall and to the stupa. With all the dark teak wood construction and the gold statue of Buffha gives the temple a unique look and feel, something to experience at least once in a lifetime. Despite being a minimalistic temple, Wat Phan tao foster a sense of containment and calmness and beauty within less, which is impressive and gravitating.


Wat Phan Tao




The White Temple

Called as Wat Rong Khun for Thais, the stunning White Temple in Chiang Rai is a place you should not miss on your vacation in Thailand. The temple and its complex mixes traditional Thai motifs and modern architectural elements making the temple a breathtaking example of contemporary Thai architecture.

The Black House

The Black House, known as Baan Dam in Thais in Chiang Rai, has the dubious honor of being Northern Thailand's most disturbing attraction. Call it every Gothic metal band's dream venue; you're guaranteed to leave the Black House with a sense of awe. The abundance of art, architecture, and human expression—albeit dark—is overwhelming. It is the life work of National Thai Artist Thawan Duchanee and it is one of the spookiest settings in all of Thailand as well. Even the many outdoor sculptures force you to pause and contemplate.


The White Temple of Chiang Rai




Wat Tham Suea

Wat Tham Suea is popularly known as the Tiger Cave Temple, which offers a remarkable spiritual experience unlike any other temple in Thailand. It just that it also provides a sense of calmness with its incredible natural surrounding of the rainforest.

Located 5 kilometres northeast of Krabi Town center, the tiger cave temple has a warren of natural limestone caves where tiger paw prints can be found from where the name came from.  It is said that the Vipassana monk named Jumnean Seelasettho, saw many tigers living and roaming around the cave. Though today no such animal is found there but this myth adds so much to the whole aura of the temple.

This sacred site has a very tall Buddha Statue that sits at the top of the temple, plus the Tham Sua temple also serves as a Thai Buddhist meditation center and has archaeological and historical significance; some of the historical attractions here are pottery shards, moulded Buddha footprints, stone tools and more. So the visitors come here for all sorts of reasons, from sightseeing to exploring to religious beliefs and more.



Sanctuary of Truth

Unlike other temples in Thailand, this temple in Pattaya doesn't have a fancy name, but that doesn't mean it doesn't have something interesting to offer. The Sanctuary of Truth is yet another temple completely made out of wood, with no other material used in construction; this is a temple commonly visited by archeologists, historians and architectural fanatics.

The temple is located near the ocean, offering such a stunning view, but what's interesting about this Thai temple is that it was built by a Thai millionaire called Lek Viriaphant, and the construction of the temple took around 30 years and unfortunately is still not completed. The complex had 20 storeys, and each has carvings of Buddhist and Hindu gods and scriptures.

The guided tour of this temple is 30 minutes lings and rightfully so as there is so much to show. And as part of the tour, out sight the premise of the temple but in the same complex, the tour ends with Thai dancing shows. There are eatery places around the premise too, so it's a complete tour with everything a visitor may need.


Sanctuary of Truth Pattaya




Wat Chalong

Last but definitely not least, Wat Chalong is amongst the famous temples in Thailand that houses important Budhha statues such as the famous 'Poh Than Jao Wat,' and each statue has its pagoda to tell the life story. 

This Thai temple is located om a calm scenic place with antique Thai furniture and Thai porcelain-designed making. The architecture and interior, along with the Buddha statues and scriptures, are popular crowd-pleaser elements of this temple in Thailand.


Wat Chalong Phuket