Bangkok’s reputation as a traffic clogged megalopolis overshadows the fact that Bangkok has more temples than any capital in Southeast Asia.
Bangkok is the seat of Thai Buddhism, and the grandest wats in Thailand are in the capital.
A popular way to visit the wats is to visit 9 temples in one day. In Thai the number nine also sounds like progress, so it has become a tradition for Thai’s to visit 9 in one day to bring good luck for the new year.
There are probably closer to 900 than 9 wats in Bangkok, but this is the 9 as listed at www.9wat.net, by the Tourism Thailand office.
I have seen other tour companies offer a different variation of wats to the one listed here. I personally would add Wat Traimit to the list. After all how can you go past a Wat with a 5.5 tonne 3.5 metre tall solid gold Buddha?
Most of the 9 Wats can be found in Ko Rattanakosin, which is the oldest part of Bangkok. This area has the most interesting historical sights, and it is nearby to the Banglamphu area, where Khao San Rd can be found (a popular area for backpackers in Bangkok).
Each wat has its own motto, and I have kept the translation as is.
Wat Phra Kaew (Temple of the Emerald Buddha)
Motto: Endless Wealth and Prosperity
Wat Bowornniwet Vihan
Motto: Receive the good things in life
Wat Saket (Golden Mount)
Motto: Create auspicious vision
Motto: Calmness is happiness
Wat Suthat Thepwararam
Motto: Enlarge your visions and fascinate surround people
Motto: Conquer all obstacles
Wat Arun (The Temple of Dawn)
Motto: Have a prosperous life
Motto: To be admired and loved
Motto: Bon Voyage
And whily you’re at it, check out these inspiring Buddhist quotes.