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Top 10 Sightseeing | The Grand Palace

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  • Top 10 Sightseeing | The Grand Palace

    The Grand Palace in Bangkok | Main Attractions
    Grand Palace Bangkok

    The Grand Palace complex was established in 1782 and it consists of not only royal and throne halls, but also a number of government offices as well as the renowned Temple of the Emerald Buddha. It covers an area of 218,000 square metres and is surrounded by four walls, 1900 metres in length. After King Rama I ascended to the throne in 1782, the palace was built. Prior to this, the royal palace and centre of administration had been located in Thonburi, on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. For various reasons, the new King considered the former capital to be unsuitable and decided to establish a new capital on the other side of the river.

    By his royal command, a palace was built to serve not only as his residence but also as the site of administrative offices. The royal compound has been known since then as The Grand Palace. The two earliest buildings erected within the complex were the Dusit Haha Prasat Throne Hall, and the Phra Maha Monthian.

    The Temple of The Emerald Buddha
    Commonly known as Wat Phra Sri Rattana Satsadaram in Thai or Wat Phra Kaew, was established by King Rama I in 1782. This temple is located in the area of the Outer Palace to house the Emerald Buddha. The tradition of construction a Buddhist temple in the precincts of the royal palace has existed in Thailand since the Sukhothai period, about 800 years ago. The unique aspect of the royal temple in the palace such as this temple is that it has no living quarters for Buddhist monks. The Emerald Buddha is the Buddha image which was carved from a block of jasper. The image itself measure 66 cms. high include the base and 48.3 cms. wide, in the attitude of meditation. Judging from the image’s style, the Emerald Buddha is of northern Thai workmanship and was probably made in 15th century, and regarded as the most important Buddha image in Thailand. There are three different costumes of the Emerald Buddha, one of season, they are summer, rainy season and winter. The first two seasons costumes were made in the reign of King Rama I and the last one for winter was made in the reign King Rama III, all made of gold and jewelry. The ceremony of changing the costume of the Emerald Buddha takes place three times a year, at the beginning of new season by the King.

    Phra Ubosot or The Chapel of The Emerald Buddha
    Phra Ubosot or The Chapel of the Emerald Buddha is the most important building in the temple was built by King Rama I in 1782. It’s the ordination hall in real Thai style architecture, the style of Ayudhaya period, used as an ordination place for Buddhist monks because it is surrounded by double sacred boundary stones, which mean royal chapel place in small pavilions. The outside walls of the building are decorated with gilt and colour glass mosaics.

    Phra Siratana Chedi
    This golden stupa is called Phra Siratana Chedi in Thai. It was erected by King Rama IV in 1855 for enshrining the Relics of the Lord Buddha. This stupa has a circular base and a bell shape which is in the Ceylonese style. The original of this one was cover with the white wash and the golden tile mosaics were applied to the stupa in the reign of King Rama V.

    Model of Angor Wat
    A model of Angor Wat, the Khmer temple in Cambodia. It is an impressive example of Khmer architecture of the 12th century. King Mongkut or King Rama IV had it built for his subjects to see what the Khmer ruins looked like. The original Angor Wat in Cambodia was built by King Suryavarman II. The real one is very large, about 1,000 metres length and 800 metres width.

    Prasat Phra Dhepbidorn or The Royal Pantheon
    The Royal Pantheon or Prasat Phra Dhepbidorn in Thai, a pavilion having a prang summit, it is a mixture of Thai-Khmer style.It was constructed by King Rama IV in 1856.At first the King wanted to transfer the Emerald Buddha from the main chapel to enshrine inside this building. But after this building was finished it was found to be too small to perform any ceremony. So it was left vacant. Later, King Rama V transferred a small golden stupa from Sivalai Garden which is inside the Grand Palace, to enshrine inside this building. But in 1903,a great fire broke out on the roof of the Royal Pantheon because the electrical wires had worn out.The restoration was accomplished in the reign of King Rama VI,and turned this building to be the Royal Pantheon of all Kings in the Bangkok period. At present, eight statues of the previous Kings are enshrined inside this building.

    Chakri Maha Prasat Hall
    This building was a royal residence built by King Rama V in 1877. The original design by the British architect, Mr.John Clunish, called for three domes over the building. But by the suggestion of the former regent, Somdej Chao Phraya Borom Haha Sri Suriyawong, King Rama V had them changed to Prasat spires. So, this is the only one building in The Grand Palace that mixed the lower part of the throne hall in European style with Thai style roof. King Rama V used this building as his residence. Later it was used by the King to receive the credentials from ambassadors. And now, this building is used for state banquets. It is three-storeyed building, built on the paln of the letter “T”. The front of the building consists of three parts. They are the East Wing, the Central and the West Wing. These parts are connected by long corridors.

    Dusit Maha Prasat Hall
    Dusit Maha Prasat Hall or Phra Thinang Dusit Maha Prasat in Thai, is the grand spired hall. It was built by King Rama I as a replacement for an earlier wooden Phra Thinang Amarintharaphisek Maha Prasat which burnt down in 1789. King Rama I intended that present building be used for his own lying-in-state as it has the same height and Dimensions as the Phra Thinang Suriyamarin in Ayudhaya, The customary hall for lying-in-state of Ayudhaya Kings.Thus the principal function of this hall for lying-in-state of Kings, Queen and members of the royal family. This hall is also used for the annual Conseration Day Ceremory.

    Opening Hours Daily 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
    Location Na Phra Lan Road, Phranakorn (Rattanakosin)
    Price Range Tickets sold from 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM and cost 500 baht!

  • #2
    Maharaj Tunnel opens in Bangkok, pedestrian underpass to the Grand Palace
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    A new pedestrian underpass in Bangkok officially opened yesterday, with a small exhibition along the underground route to the Grand Palace. In addition to easing traffic problems in the heart of the city, the Maharaj Tunnel offers an exhibition showcasing the history of Bangkok as well as Thai architecture. It also provides clean toilets for those walking throughout the city.

    The new tunnel is located under Maharaj and Na Phra Lan Road near the Grand Palace. Yesterday, Bangkok governor Aswin Kwanmueng took a tour along the tunnel to check out the overall construction and told Thai media that the tunnel was built to improve pedestrian safety. The governor says that the tunnel is also a good meeting point for tourists exploring the city, adding that it has clean restrooms for the public to use.

    According to a post on Bangkok’s public relations Facebook page, the Public Works Department says construction is 99% complete and will be finished by July.
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    • #3
      Debate over Bangkok’s Sanam Luang Public Park
      Sanam Luang Park Bangkok

      Thai officials are debating how much access the public should have to Sanam Luang, the historic public square in front of Bangkok’s Grand Palace and Temple of the Emerald Buddha. After a governor candidate running under the Move Forward Party advocated removing fences around Sanam Luang, another official has defended keeping them and restricting access to the ‘public’ park. The park has a long history, with its auspicious location and role in the life of Thailand’s royal family and ceremonies, as well as a location for protests and the low point, the ‘Thammasat University Massacre’ in 1976

      The Move Forward candidate, Wiroj Lakkhanaadisorn, visited Sanam Luang on Thursday as part of a campaign to “reclaim Sanam Luang”. Wiroj says the square should become another green space accessible to locals. He added that there is already CCTV at Sanam Luang deterring people from committing crimes, and therefore fences aren’t necessary.

      Wasant Boonmuenwai, director of Phra Nakhon district, hit back, arguing that Sanam Luang should keep the fences. Wasant said that while Sanam Luang is open for visitors most days, it’s also a historic site that serves as a venue on special occasions. These occasions include the Royal Ploughing Ceremony, and Father’s Day. He said since Sanam Luang is near the Grand Palace and Temple of the Emerald Buddha, City Hall has issued a specific set of regulations for its use and maintenance.

      “Sanam Luang is open to the public from 5am until 10pm. Walking and running are the only activities allowed. Other activities are currently not permitted due to the Covid-19 pandemic”.
      In addition to the public square, Sanam Luang also has a grass field. Many Thais enjoy flying kites during the country’s kite-flying season from February to April. Sanam Luang and the adjacent Thammasat University were also the scene of the 1976 ‘Thammarat Massacre’ where government and police cracked down on ‘leftist’ protesters. Official reports record that 46 people were killed and 167 were wounded, while unofficial reports claim that more than 100 demonstrators were killed.