Wat Rakang, or the Temple of Bells, is a lesser-known temple in Bangkok. Founded in the 18th century, the temple has five giant bells and a Buddha seated in a meditative position in the center. The architecture of the temple is sublime, and the murals in the ordination hall are beautiful and remarkable. Local people believe that the sound of the bells will bring them fame and a good reputation. Wat Rakhang is famous as the residence of the famous Somdet Phra Phutthachan, the supreme patriarch of, who was well-read and knowledgeable about the scriptures.
The scriptures contain the teachings of the Lord Buddha in Pali, which have been passed down from generation to generation. This second-rate royal temple is packed with visitors on weekends, as the ringing of bells throughout the day rents the air. Rituals and prayers to Lord Buddha find their way into the ordination hall known as the Ubosot. The ruling deity here is the Laughing Buddha, named after King Rama VI. The entire walls of the Ubosot display beautiful murals depicting the stories of the Jatakas, which are considered part of the Buddhist scriptures.
Wat Rakhang was originally called Wat Bang Wa Yai and dated back to the Ayutthaya era when King Taksin built it. However, the entire temple was moved to Wat Phra Kaeo after a bell was discovered by King Rama I, who ruled Thailand in the 18th century. The reigning king added five new bells to the temple, which became famous as the bell temple from then on. Visitors are surprised that all the bells are intact to this day.
Wat Rakhang Architecture
All temple activities are centered around the Ubosot, which is in reasonably good condition due to several renovations. The walls of the room display magnificent murals commissioned during the time of Rama VI. The windows are adorned with gold and are magnificently decorated with horn-shaped projections hanging from the ceiling. There are also nine boundary markers. The sacred library known as Ho Phra Tripitaka is located next to the Ubosot.
It is a red wooden building that houses ancient Buddhist scriptures. The writings can be seen on either side of a central panel containing a vast portrait of King Rama I. This part has an attached altar for visitors interested in paying homage to it. The builder of the temple, however, is the replica of a huge golden bell placed on the riverbank that immediately catches the eye.
- Devout Buddhists are advised to take the nine temple tour that includes a stopover at Wat Rakhang.
- It is best to visit the temple on weekdays as weekends are usually crowded.
- It is mandatory to cover knees and shoulders at the temple.
- Touching the holy scriptures or statues is forbidden.
- Wearing loose clothing is advisable to avoid the heat.
- It is best to keep the valuables secured within the person.
How to Reach Wat Rakhang
Wat Rakhang is located on Bangkok’s Arun Arnarin Road and can be reached by bus number 57 from the city center. Pier near the Grand Palace in Thailand. The best way to get to the temple entrance is to cross the river by ferry from the pier for a small fee of 3THB per passenger. Foreign citizens often rent private cars to travel along the Arun Arnarin Road and use the multi-story car park where you can park for free for one hour.