Ayutthaya – Wat Phanan Choeng

Wat Phanan Choeng is a historic site, yet one of the most active temples in Ayutthaya. The temple is sacred for both Thai and Chinese people, and features the largest, most impressive and adored sitting Buddha statue in Ayutthaya. 19 meters tall and 14 meters wide, the statue is called by the Thai Luang Por To, and by the Chinese – Sam Po Kong; it is considered as the defender of sailors and seafarers.

The temple is located outside of the island created by the 3 rivers, right across the Pasak river, next to its meeting spot with Chao Phraya river. There’s a pier right next to the site, so you can get there by boat.

The temple and statue, which used to stand under the open sky, were built in 1324, more than 20 years before Ayutthaya kingdom was established by king U-Thong (Ramathibodi I). Over the years, the temple was expanded and developed, as further buildings were added to its complex.

Nowadays, the temple complex contains several structures, and one of them features the huge, golden sitting Buddha statue. One of the structures is a Chinese building, decorated with dragons, featuring a temple for a Chinese goddess named Lady Soi Dok Mak. To this day, it serves the Chinese community that resided in the place back in the 13th century. The temple itself is very decorated and contains designated places for various ceremonies, bringing offerings or donations.Wat Phanan Choeng

FYI: both Wat Phana Choeng and Wat Yai Chai Mongkol are located across the river, on the eastern side of Ayutthaya, so you can easily visit both

My Opinion:  a historic Thai-Chinese styled temple that is very active to date. Apart from the giant, golden Buddha statue, which is the most impressive in Ayutthaya, the fact that the temple is very active and lively enables visitors to observe Thai culture up-close and in real time. The temple is indoors nowadays so you can visit it comfortably, even in times of bad weather conditions.Wat Phanan Choeng

♥ You can visit the site during Tiptop Travel tour plans in Ayutthaya