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Wat Saket, temple of Golden Mount 



Tour zone: Bang Lamphu, 4kms from Siam Centre: 
Timeframe: 2hrs   cost: low, food and drink available on site

also known as Phou Khao Thong (Golden Mount)
 
The yellow hill crowned with a gleaming gold chedi is also known as the Golden Mount, or 'Phu Khao Thong'. It rises within the compound of Wat Saket, an unusual temple that houses Buddha relics within its 58-metre-high chedi surmounted by a golden cupola.

The major feature is the Golden Mount, dating from the 1800. It is an artificial hill topped by a gilded pagoda which is 260 feet in height from its base. Begun by King Rama III and completed in the reign of King Rama IV, the golden mount is one of the most celebrated landmarks in Bangkok’s old area. The golden Chedi houses relics of Buddha and affords visitors who climb its 318 steps a panoramic view of Bangkok from the top. 
Wat Saket, the official name being Wat Saket Ratch Woramaha Wiharn, is an old temple that was built in the period of Ayutthaya and originally known as "Wat Sakaet". When Thonburi was the capital, the temple was claimed as the royal temple and its name were changed to "Wat Chaeng", means temple of the bright morning.
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This attraction appears in tour zones Bang Lamphu and Rattanakosin
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Website: Wat Saket translated by Google

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Wat Saket is easily recognized by its golden Chedi atop a fortress-like hill near the pier for Bangkok's east-west khlong ferry. The Wat was restored by King Rama I, and 30,000 bodies were brought here during a plague in the reign of Rama II. The hill, which is almost 80 meters high, is an artificial construction begun during the reign of Rama III. Rama IV brought in 1,000 teak logs to shore it up because it was sinking into the swampy ground. Rama V built the golden chedi to house a relic of Buddha, said to be from India or Nepal, given to him by the British. 

The concrete walls were added during World War II to keep the structure from collapsing. All around the Wat are the accommodation where the monks live and go to school.
 
The Golden Mount, a short but breathtaking climb that's best made in the morning, is most interesting for its vista of old Rattanakosin and the rooftops of Bangkok. Every year in the 12th lunar month (late October to mid-November - for nine days around the full moon) Wat Saket hosts Bangkok's most important temple fair, when the Golden Mount is wrapped with red cloth and a carnival erupts around it, with food and trinket stalls, theatrical performances, freak shows, animal circuses, and other monkey business. 

People come here at this time to pay respect to Lord Buddha's relics, and to rejoice in the festive occasion. However, at present times, the Golden Mount festival is not as popular as it used to be in the olden days.








Temple Fair: The Golden Mount is the location for an annual temple fair held every November. During the fair, a candlelight procession snakes its way up the mount in the early evening hours.



Getting there


Getting to the Golden Mount can be a bit difficult, it's not close to any tourist friendly transportation, such as the Skytrain or river boat. The best option is to get a taxi from your hotel which can sometimes be difficult, so try 

1. Canal ferry Boat: 20b mtrs from Pier  Pier Phan fa Lilat on Saen Saep Canal 
2. River Ferry boat of Chaophraya Express Boat to the Memorial Bridge pier, then take a taki or tuk-tuk from there.

Bus: Only a few buses pass here. The bus no. 15 from Silom, no. 49 from Chinatown pass the temple entrance.
Tuk/Tuk: usually many at the Pier as this pier is the last stop hub gateway to the old city area

Private:

Car: Drive to Thanon Worachak Rd and park in the temple.


ADMISSION FEE:  Daily open 8.30AM - 5.30PM  20 Bath for going up the golden mount, toilets and coffee shop 50mtrs up from the entrance.











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