Wat Benchamabophit Dusitvanaram, better known as the Marble Temple or Wat Ben, is considered one of the most beautiful temples of Thailand, thanks to its typical architecture symmetrical designed by Prince Naris, son of Rama IV and brother of Rama V. The original temple dates back to the Ayutthaya period, and was known as Wat Laem or Wat Saithong. During the reign of Rama IV, the temple was restored by five princes, and renamed Wat Bejamabopit, which just means five princes in Thai. In 1899, King Chulalongkorn, the Great Rama V, completely rebuilt the temple, after which he had built near it his new palace, the Dusit Palace. The temple was renamed Wat Benchamabophit Dusitwanaram that mean "The Monastery of the Fifth King near the Dusit Palace". The Great Rama V puts Prince Narissaranuwattiwong, his half brother and the chief architect of Siam at that time, as director of design and construction. The name Marble Temple derives from its Phra Ubosot, square-shaped and completely covered with precious white marble, imported from the quarries of Carrara in Italy. The courtyard of access has marble columns and two large Singhas, i.e. Thai lions, guard posts at the entrance of the Bot. The interior of the hall, in Sukhothai style, is decorated with beams of lacquer and gold; here is the temple’s main sacred image. The Buddha statue was merged in 1920 and was named Phra Buddhajinaraja. It is a copy of other original image which is located inside the Wat Mahathat in Phitsanulok, northern Thailand. The ashes of King Chulalongkorn are buried beneath the statue. In the cloister, which extends around the Phra Ubosot, there are 52 Buddha images of different styles and historical periods. Rama V has lived for a period of his life in the residential part of this temple, precisely when he entered in his monasticism stage. The murals that are located in the corridors leading to the residential part, and the hall of regal ordering, are of a great historical interest, in fact show the customs and traditions of the court during the reigns of King Rama IV and Rama V. The best time to visit the temple is early in the morning, because these are the hours when the local people offer the alms to monks, as is in the classic Thai tradition.
Admission fee & Opening hours: Marble Temple is open daily from 08:00 until 17:30. Admission fee is 20 THB.
Getting there: The temple is located on Rama V Road in Dusit District, near junction of Thanon Rama V and Thanon Si Ayutthaya. There aren't Skytrain or Subway stations nearby, so the best way to get there is by metered taxi.Read More
Wat Benchamabophit Dusitvanaram Events
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