Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Bangkok Travel Guide

Bangkok prides itself as a fantastic place to visit as there is plenty to see and do in the City of Angels including more than 400 beautiful and fascinating Buddhist temples - Wat Phra Kaew and the Royal Grand palace, Wat Pho , Wat Arun and Wat Benchamabopit Dusitwanaram being four fantastic places to visit.

Other attractions in the City of Angel include National Museum, the teak palace of Vimanmek Mansion and Erawan Shrine. Also worth a visit are Chatuchak Weekend Market and Suan Lum Night Bazaar if you are a serious shopper

Wat Phra Kaew
The temple is constructed by the royal order of King Rama I along with the Royal grand Palace and Ratanakosin Island. It is built as a temple in a Royal compound like aWat Sri Sanphet Ayuthaya. The temple is located the outer section of the Royal Enclosure west of the Grand Palace

Wat Phra Kaew is the place of The Emerald Buddha, the most important Budha image of Thailand, which is a Buddha image in the meditating position in the style of the Lanna School of the north, dating from the 15th century AD. It was brought from Vientiane by King Rama I.

The Royal Grand Palace
In 1781, The Royal Grand Palace was constructed by the royal command of King Rama I, the first monarch of the Chakri Dynasty, to be the centre of the city after he moved capital from Thonburi to the other ban. The Maha Monthien group of buildings, the Throne Halls, and other palaces and buildings are inside the Royal grand Palace.

Wat Pho (Wat Chetuphon)
Renowned as the fist universiry of Thailand, Wat Pho is large and extensive temple closes to theRoyal grand Palace. The temple is the house of the extraordinary 46 metre long reclining Buddha regarded as the biggest in Thailand

Wat Arun
One of Bangkok ‘s world famous landmarks is the Prang of Wat Arun on the bank of Chao Phraya River The temple existed was the capital of Thailand. The temple was formerly known as Wat Makok, before King Taksin built his palace. He ordered the temple to be annexed to it then restores and renamed the temple as “Wat Jang”. King Rama II restores the temple again and renamed it to "Wat Arunratchatharam” before King Rama IV cgnaged its name to "Wat Arunratchawararam"

Wat Benchamabopit
The area belonging to Dusit Temple and another deserted temple were used to construct the hall and for road when King Rama V commanded the building of the Dusit Palace. The tradition states that a new temple must be built instead but the king considered that building several temples would be a big burden for maintenance. Therefore a better alternative was building a bigger and more elaborate design. So the temple was designed by the royal command and was renamed to Wat Benchamabophit, meaning "Wat of King Rama V.

National Museum
The museum was originally the Personal Museum of King Rama IV with a collection of antiques and Royal Gifts. After that King Rama V subsequently opened the Sahathai Samakom Pavilion (Concordia Tower) in the Grand Palace grounds as a Museum to puclic. The museum was then moved to three palace buildings in the Front Palace where the over all buildings of the palace was saved by King Rama VII to be the Bangkok Museum.

Vimanmek Mansion was the residence of King Rama V. During the construction of the Dusit Garden Palace, the Mantatrattanarojana Palace was dismantled from Si Chang Island by the royal command of King Rama V to be reassembled in the Dusit Garden Palace grounds. The mansion was built entirely from golden teak in the Western style. The four-storey private section was called Pad-liam, or octagon for its eight-sided shape. Currently, 31 rooms are open to the public, and some have been maintained as they were before including the Royal bed chamber, the private bathroom and the audience hall.

Erawan shrine
The construction of Erawan Hotel was started in 1953 by Thai Hotel and Tourism Co. The management consulted an astrologer for an auspicious date for its grand opening when it was near completion in 1956. However, the astrologer pointed out that the date when the foundation stone was laid was not suitable, and advised that a Brahman shrine and a guardian spirit shrine should be built to correct the error.

Therefore, the gilded plaster statue was enshrined at the Erawan Hotel on November 9, 1956 after the management brought in the Dept. of Fine Arts to design and build the statue of Brahma according to the traditions of the department.

Many Thais and foreign visitors come to pay respect to the Shrine to grant their wishes or just simply enjoy the exotic sights and atmosphere

Chatuchak Weekend Market
If you are a serious shopper and ready to bargain, Chatuchak Weekend Market is a heaven for you. If you want to buy plants and trees, the plant market opens every Wednesday and Thursday. For everything else, such as antiques, books and magazines, fashions, food, furniture, handicrafts, jewellery, paintings, pets, plants, and miscellaneous item, can be found on the weekend from 8,000 stalls from all parts of the country

Suan Lum Night Bazaar
More than 3,000 shops were set up to sell everything - gifts, clothing, jewellery, fruit, compact discs, hand-made products and fine arts. The market is open from 3 pm to mid night with some shops open until late. In another section, there is a big beer garden, with an array food stalls and restaurants, and live entertainment. The Night Bazaar is opposite to Lumphini Park at the Bangkok Metro's Lumphini Station

Source: Bangkok Tourism Division

Suan Lum Night Bazaar

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