MY FIRST VISIT TO THE MAGNIFICENT WHITE TEMPLE, CHIANG RAI
One of the most impressive structures I’ve seen in Chian Rai, Thailand during my last visit being one of the blogger winners in the TAT Newsroom Blogger Campaign was the White Temple or the Wat Rong Khun. From afar, you will see the majestic temple standing with all its splendor like a pure queen. I was even mesmerized the moment I got close to the temple. The all white building is intricately design and painstakingly embedded with mirror glass which made it sparkle when struck by the sun.
The White Temple is privately owned by a Thailand’s National Artist, Chalermchai Kositpipat. Kositpipat, designed and personally supervised the construction of the building. To my surprise, the building was constructed not as a religious temple , but simply as a tourist attraction.
As expected, since the temple was designed by an artist, each of the element present in the building has meaning and representations. It’s quite difficult to make a tour in this place when you are in a hurry because you will never want to miss any details of the place.
As you approach the temple, you will pass by a bridge over a small constructed lake which they called “The Bridge of the Cyle of Rebirth”. At the lake, you will see hundreds of hands reaching out which symbolize unrestrained desire. The artist believed that in order to obtain happiness, one must guard himself against any temptation, greed, and desire.
After crossing the bridge, you pass by the “Gate of Heaven”. This is not a literal gate, but you will know that you are in this part of the temple because you will see creatures guarding the way.
As I slowly pass by the gate, I can’t help but be awed by the amount of genius poured out by the artist to create this masterpiece. After a while, I arrived at the main building, which they call the Ubosot. Should you wish to enter the building, you must remove your shoes. In front of the Ubosot, you will see several Buddha images still in white.
Buddha Images around the main White Temple
notice the intricate details of the White Temple…simply amazing
I linger for a while to take some photographs and see more of the amazing element present in the building. After a while, I move to exit the White Temple and happened to see another glorious structure, The Golden Building. I was even amazed knowing that golden building was simply constructed as a comfort rooms building.
It is said that the White Building represent our mind and the Golden Building represents our body. The golden color was made to create a contrast showing how most people focus on the worldly things.
Before leaving the property one can drop by the gallery of the famous artist and the owner of the temple, Chalermchai Kositpipat. Inside the gallery,you will see some of his works and coffee table book about his life.
Within the vicinity of the White Temples are some Cafes and souvenir shops waiting for any guests to drop by. Don’t forget to see this place on your next visit to Chiang Rai, Thailand. Have a Happy Trip!
The Bloggers from the different countries with the TAT Newsroom Team