Wat Rachabophit, Bangkok.
See Location Map
Central Chedi and Viharn to the right, of Wat Ratchabophit, Bangkok
Wat Ratchabophit is located within walking distance from Wat Suthat and the Giant Swing. The Wat occupies a relatively small area, when compared to other important temples in central Bangkok. The center of the temple compound is formed by a Phra Chedi, with a narrow circumambulatory walkway, and the Ubosoth and Viharn on opposite sites of the Chedi.
Wat Ratchabophit is quite distinct in design and decorations. All the temple structures are covered on the outside by pieces of old Thai Benjarong Ceramics (insted of being plain white like a lot of other temples). The interior of both the Ubosoth and Viharn looks quite European, one would almost imagine being somewhere in a castle or palace.
The Phra Chedi or Pagoda is built in a round bell-like shape on a platform. The spire arrow is surmounted with a small gold ceramics ball in which the Lord Buddha's Relics are kept. Sixteen niches have Buddha Images installed representing various positions.
Entry door to the Viharn, Wat Ratchabophit, Bangkok
Phra Ubosoth or the main ceremonial building of the temple is of a distinguished combination of two different styles, Thai and Gothic. The outer part of the building is in Thai style. The inner part is of Gothic style. The exterior panels of windows and doors represent insignia designs of The Royal Decorations inlaid with mother of pearl. The interior ones are designed with a lotus-like lacquerware work.
The principal Buddha Image is installed in the Phra Ubosoth. It is represented on an Italian marble pedestal. It is named Phra Buddha Angkhiros which literally means 'the aurora bursting from the body'. The Buddha image was, in the reign of King Rama IV, cast with gold.
Window of Viharn in late afternoon sun. Wat Ratchabophit, Bangkok
Phra Vihara or the secondary ceremonial building, has similar characteristic as the Phra Ubosoth. Inside, the Principal Buddhist Manuscript, Tripitaka, is kept. The panels of doors and windows are of ainted wood carving with bits of gilded glasses. In the middle of the panels are insignia representations of The Royal Decorations.
Ubosoth of Wat Ratchabophit, Bangkok