Hello everyone, it's Sirinya, and I am excited to share with you some of my favorite Hindu temples in Thailand. Thailand is known for its beautiful Buddhist temples, but not many people know that the country also has a long-standing tradition of Hinduism. Hinduism was introduced to Thailand during the ancient Khmer era, and it has since then become an integral part of the country's spiritual and cultural fabric.
Today, Hinduism is practiced by a minority of Thais, primarily by the Thai-Indian community. Despite being a small minority, the Hindu community has contributed greatly to Thailand's society and culture. When it comes to the Hindu temples in Thailand, there are many to choose from. These temples are a representation of the rich cultural diversity that Thailand has to offer.
In this article, I will be taking you on a virtual journey to some of the best Hindu temples in Thailand. Whether you are Hindu or not, these temples are sure to leave a lasting impression on you. Each temple has its unique story and significance, and I will be sharing them with you as we go along. So, sit back, relax, and let's explore the best Hindu temples in Thailand!
Located in the northern province of Lampang, Wat Chalermprakiat stands as one of the most impressive Hindu temples in Thailand. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu god Ganesha and is surrounded by lush green forests and rocky outcrops.
When you arrive at Wat Chalermprakiat, you will have to climb a steep staircase that will lead you to the main temple. The staircase is adorned with intricate carvings and sculptures depicting Hindu gods, including Hanuman and Shiva.
Once you reach the temple, you will be greeted by a towering statue of Ganesha. The statue is encircled by offerings of flowers and incense, making it a peaceful and introspective place of worship.
Wat Phra Si Sanphet
Wat Phra Si Sanphet is located in the historical city of Ayutthaya, and it is one of the most impressive Buddhist temples in Thailand. The temple dates back to the 14th century, and it served as the royal temple for the Ayutthaya Kingdom.
While Wat Phra Si Sanphet is primarily a Buddhist temple, it also has a Hindu-inspired hall known as the Vihara Prakara. The hall is dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu and is adorned with intricate carvings and sculptures depicting the deity.
The Vihara Prakara is an excellent example of how Hindu and Buddhist customs have intermingled and influenced each other throughout the history of Thailand.
Wat Rong Khun
Wat Rong Khun, also known as the White Temple, is one of the most unique Hindu temples in Thailand. The temple is located in the northern province of Chiang Rai and was designed by Thai artist Chalermchai Kositpipat.
The temple's exterior is entirely white, symbolizing the purity and enlightenment of the Buddha. However, when you step inside, you will be greeted by a stunning mural depicting a scene inspired by Hindu mythology.
The mural features Ganesha, Shiva, Vishnu, and other Hindu gods painted with bold colors and intricate details. The clash between the temple's exterior and interior is mesmerizing and thought-provoking.
Wat Arun Ratchawararam
Wat Arun Ratchawararam, or the Temple of the Dawn, is a beautiful Hindu temple located in the heart of Bangkok. The temple dates back to the Ayutthaya period and has undergone several renovations throughout its history, with the most recent one in 2017.
The temple's most prominent feature is the central prang, which stands 79 meters tall and is adorned with colorful glass and Chinese porcelain. The prang is dedicated to the Hindu god Aruna, who is often depicted as the charioteer of the sun god Surya.
Visitors can climb the prang's steep staircase to get a stunning view of Bangkok's skyline and the Chao Phraya River.
Erawan Shrine, also known as the Thao Mahaprom Shrine, is one of the most popular Hindu shrines in Thailand. The shrine is located in the heart of Bangkok and is dedicated to the Hindu god Brahma.
The shrine's most striking feature is the golden statue of Brahma, which stands four-faced and adorned with colorful garments and offerings. Visitors to the shrine can purchase jasmine garlands and lotuses to place at the statue's feet as an offering.
Erawan Shrine is particularly popular with tourists and locals alike and is often a bustling and lively place.
Sri Mariamman Temple
Sri Mariamman Temple is one of the oldest Hindu temples in Bangkok and is located in the bustling Chinatown area. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Mariamman, who is worshipped for her healing powers.
The temple's facade is adorned with colorful carvings and sculptures depicting Hindu gods and goddesses, including Ganesh and Shiva. The interior of the temple is just as impressive, with intricate carvings and colorful murals adorning the walls.
Sri Mariamman Temple is an excellent place to witness Hindu customs and rituals and is often bustling with activity during important Hindu festivals.
Phra Mondop at Wat Phra Kaew
Phra Mondop is a stunning Hindu-inspired building located within the grounds of the Grand Palace in Bangkok. The building dates back to the 18th century and was used to store important Buddhist scriptures.
However, the building's exterior is adorned with intricate carvings and sculptures depicting Hindu gods, including Vishnu and Hanuman. The intricate artwork is a testament to the influence that Hindu traditions have had on Thai culture and customs.
Visitors to the Grand Palace can marvel at the stunning architecture and artwork and gain a deeper appreciation for the rich history and culture of Thailand.