Temples — 25 March 2016 13 h 28 min

Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

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Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

A beautiful hilltop temple, Wat Bang Riang (Wat Rat Upatam in its formal name)

is located on Khao Lan Mountain in Thap Put, Phang Nga Province. It features a seated golden Buddha image,

a large statue of Kwam Im, the Chinese Goddess of Mercy and fine Thai temple architecture.

Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

A drive through this rustic countryside can be very interesting, despite the fact

that it is not on the usual tourist beaten path and it’s well worth a visit if you have time to spare.

Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

Wat Bang Riang is a temple with monks living in it.

The overall atmosphere is very peaceful but once in a while buses with Thai tourists stop by to make merit

and pay respect to the bell-shaped pagoda called Chedi Phutthathambanlue.

This 109-metre-tall holy structure is said to house relics of the Buddha and it cost almost 70 million baht to build.

Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

The two enormous mystical five-headed serpent nagas standing on each side of the staircase make quite an impressive entrance.

Within the temple complex is the gigantic golden Buddha

and the tallest statue of Kwam Im in South of Thailand (as well as many of her mini versions in the basement).

Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

On top of these, visitors will get to see countless of Buddha images of all sizes, in various postures

and styles here and there and Thai guardian figures such as lions, elephants, holy birds and Chinese-style dragons.

Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

Its full name Wat Rat Upatam means ‘the temple that has been supported by locals’ and it has an interesting

story attached to it. Lung Por Chai, the abbot who founded the temple,

once said there was no way that a poor temple without anything would become a grand place of worship.

Wat Bang Riang in Phang Nga

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