Attraction

Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat Temple - Thailand

Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat, or Wat Phra Si for short, is a highly-revered 14thcentury Buddhist temple, sitting on the banks of the gentle Nan River. As the most important religious site in Phitsanoluk – a historic city situated roughly halfway between Bangkok and Chiang Mai – Wat Phra Si is famous for its statuesque golden Buddha – said to be the most beautiful in all of Thailand.

Historic temples and iconic statues

While the gleaming golden Buddha (named Phra Buddha Chinnarat), with its flame-like decorative surrounds and serene seated posture, rightly receives the most attention, the scenic temple grounds also offer some wonderful sights.

Visit the foundry to learn about the process of creating such iconic statues, stroll through colourful exotic gardens and find out more about the temple’s history at the fascinating onsite museum and gallery – its collection of traditional Sukothai art is a real treat.   

Don’t miss the chance to admire the temple’s second famous Buddha image. The Phra Attharos Buddha is a 36-metre tall standing image to be found in front of the temple’s impressive tower (or prang).

Essential Information

  • Hours: 
    04:30 - 16:00

Top Tips from our Experts

Martyn

Destination Manager

“As an important Buddhist pilgrim site, Wat Phra Si can get busy. Arriving early at 6.30am, when it first opens. The temple looks beautiful at sunrise and it’s a lovely, peaceful way to start the day.” 

Christie

Destination Executive

“Taking photographs of the golden Buddha is allowed, but you should only do so from a respectful kneeling position, so as not to block the view of other visitors and pilgrims, and never with your back to the statue.”