Wat Phra Singh
Wat Phra Singh
Temple : #Unmissable #Wat
Singhakhlai Road, Tambon Wiang - Chiang Rai ( Chiang Rai )
08.00 - 17.00  - $   | View Events
Your rating: None Average: 1.5 (4 votes)
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Wat Phra Singh

Located on Thanon Singhakhlai in Tambon Wiang, Wat Phra Singh is one of Chiang Rai’s oldest temples, and one of most fine example of religious architecture in Lanna style, with influences of Sri Lanka style. The temple was built between 1345 and 1400, during the rule of Pra Chao Maha Proma, a little over a century after the city of Chiang Rai was founded by King Mengrai in 1262. Wat Phra Singh's edifices are built almost entirely of wood, except for a beautiful small brass chedi that stands behind the viharn. The gold plated Sinhalese style chedi consists of a square base with small shrines on its sides that contain Buddha images and a spiral shaped top. The main structures of Wat Phra Singh are the ubosot, the viharn, the Kuti or monks living quarters, and a small chapel containing a stone with the footprint of the Buddha and scriptures Khmer, which is believed to date from the previous reign of King Phaya Mengrai who was the brother of King Pra Chao Maha Proma. The viharn is a typical Lanna style structure with a multi tiered roof and Naga decorated bargeboards. In the temple's ubosot was originally enshrined the sacred image of Phra Phuttha Sihing, also know as Phra Buddha Sihing or Lion Buddha, which is a cultural landmark in the history of Theravada Buddhism in Thailand. In the ubosot, as well in the viharn, are now preserved several replicas of the Phra Singh image, including a gold and ebony image and even a purple jade copy. Legend has it that the original image of the Buddha Sihing was merged in Sri Lanka in 157 AD and was later brought in Siam in 1307 AD, at first in Nakhon Si Tammarat and then in Sukhothai during the heyday of the Sukhothai Kingdom. Over the years the statue was moved to Ayutthaya and Kamphaeng Phet, and later inside the Wat Phra Singh in Chiang Rai, then in 1367 was brought to Chiang Mai, the new capital of Lanna Empire. According to Siamese culture of that time, it was believed that wherever the image of Buddha Sihing resided the Buddhism would prosper, so of statue were made at least three copies perfectly equal, as it was the tradition in the style of the Sukhothai Kingdom. Currently there are three images of Buddha Sihing that share the same name, and claim to be the original, plus two latest replicas that are located inside the Wat Phra Singh in Chiang Rai and inside the Wat Chong Klang in Mae Hong Son. Two of original images are located inside the Wat Phra Singh Woramahawihan in Chain Mai and in Phra Sihing Hall in Nakhon Sri Thammarat, while that which is presumed to be the original from Sri Lanka, if the legend is real, is preserved in the Phutthai Sawan Chapel of the National Museum in Bangkok.
Admission fee & Opening hours: The temple is open daily from 08:00 to 17:00. Admission is free.
Getting there: Wat Phra Singh is located on the intersection of Singhakhlai Road and Tha Luang Road in Tambon Wiang, just 1,2 north of city center, and easy accessible on foot or by samlor, the tipical three wheeled rickshaw, or songthaew from those who stay already in Chiang Rai.
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