Wat Arun Ratchawararam Ratchawaramahawihan (Thai: วัดอรุณราชวราราม ราชวรมหาวิหาร) or Wat Arun (Thai pronunciation: wát ʔarun], "Temple of Dawn") is a Buddhist temple (wat) in Bangkok Yai district of Bangkok, Thailand, on the Thonburi west bank of the Chao Phraya River.
The temple derives its name from the Hindu god Aruna, often personified as the radiations of the rising sun. Wat Arun is among the best known of Thailand's landmarks and the first light of the morning reflects off the surface of the temple with pearly iridescence. Although the temple had existed since at least the seventeenth century, its distinctive prang (spires) were built in the early nineteenth century during the reign of King Rama II.
Wat Arun can be easily accessed through the Chao Phraya River, and ferries travel across the river towards the Maharaj pier. For the foreigners, the temple charges an entrance fee of 50 baht (as of December 2017). During Kathina, the king travels to Wat Arun in a procession of royal barges to present new robes to the monks.
It is easily one of the most stunning temples in Bangkok, not only because of its riverside location, but also because the design is very different to the other temples you can visit in Bangkok. Wat Arun ( Temple of The Dawn) is partly made up of colourfully decorated spires and stands majestically over the water. Wat Arun is almost directly opposite Wat Pho, so it is very easy to get to. From Sapphan Taksin boat pier you can take a river boat that stops at pier 8. From here a small shuttle boat takes you from one side of the river to the other for only 3 baht.
We would recommend spending at least an hour visiting the temple. Although it is known as the Temple of the Dawn, it's absolutely stunning at sunset, particularly when lit up at night. The quietest time to visit, however, is early morning, before the crowds. Given beauty of the architecture and the fine craftsmanship it is not surprising that Wat Arun is considered by many as one of the most beautiful temples in Thailand. The spire (prang) on the bank of Chao Phraya River is one of Bangkok's world-famous landmarks. It has an imposing spire over 70 metres high, beautifully decorated with tiny pieces of coloured glass and Chinese porcelain placed delicately into intricate patterns.
Wat Arun Opening Hours: 08:00 -17:30 Location: Located on the west side of Chao Praya River (opposite Tha Thien Pier) Arun Amarin Road, next to the Chao Phraya River, opposite to Wat Pho.,
Entry tickets : 50 Baht (subject to change)
Operating day : All Days
Operating time : 07.30 - 17.30
Things you should be aware of when visiting Wat Arun:
- Respectful attire is required. Wat Arun is a functioning Thai Buddhist temple, and as such the management insists that visitors dress in a respectful manner. This means that men must wear long pants and short-sleeved or long-sleeved shirts (no tank tops or sleeveless shirts). Women must wear skirts or pants extending at least to the knee, and also should not wear a top that reveals bare shoulders.
- Visitors are allowed to take photographs in any area of the complex.
- The steps leading up the main pagoda at Wat Arun are quite steep and caution should be taken when ascending and descending.
- At the very top of the main pagoda is a king’s crown, placed there by King Rama III.
- Wat Arun is the private temple of King Rama II, as some of his ashes are kept under the main Buddha image in the Ordination Hall.