Attraction 139 Suthep Rd, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand Published on: 08-06-2016
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Why Wat Suan Dok is special ?
Wat Suan Dok was founded by King Kue Na of Lanna for the monk Sumana Thera in the year 1370 CE. The temple was built in the centre of Wiang Suan Dok, a walled settlement of the Lawa people older than Chiang Mai itself. The outlines of the fortifications can clearly be traced on satellite images, and remains of some of the earthen walls can still be seen north of Suthep road. King Kue Na's flower garden, which was located here, lent the temple its original name: Wat Buppharam Dok Mai, or Wat Suan Dok Mai for short.
According to legend, Maha Sumana Thera, a monk from the Sukhothai Kingdom, after having had a vision discovered a relic of the Buddha which, also according to the same vision, was to be housed in Chiang Mai. Sumana Thera stayed two rainy seasons at Wat Phra Yuen just outside Lamphun at the invitation of King Kue Na while the latter had Wat Buppharam Dok Mai built. When the moment arrived for the relic to be housed in the newly built temple, it miraculously duplicated itself. One of the relics was housed, as intended, in a shrine inside Wat Buppharam Dok Mai, while the other relic was placed on the back of a white elephant which then climbed up Doi Suthep, the mountain directly west of Chiang Mai, where it trumpeted three times and died. Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep was built on that spot to house the second relic.
What to explore at Wat Suan Dok?
The main chedi is a gilded, bell-shaped structure that rises dramatically above a sea of immaculate white memorial chedi honouring members of the Thai royal family, with the misty ridge of Doi Suthep soaring behind.
The hanger-like main wí·hăhn contains a huge standing Buddha statue that almost touches the ceiling. Take some time to wander the memorial garden of whitewashed chedi in front of the monastery, which contain the ashes of generations of Lanna royalty.
How to get to Wat Suan Dok?
The Wat Suan Dok is located on Suthep road, about 1 kilometer West of the old walled city center. You can get there easily by tuk-tuk or rented bicycle.
- Very peaceful, and great for panorama photos
- Really nice gold covered style
- Fantastic temple full with historical
- One of the most beautiful temple in Thailand
- Incredible cemetery with temple
139 Suthep Rd, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
Tips for you
There are myriads of temples in Chiang Mai, each with distinctive features, architecture, size and history. There are features that set Suan Dok, apart. This temple dates back to the 14th century. The immense golden bell is visible from a distance. A huge statue of buddha is located at the entrance of the temple hall. The Chiang Mai Campus of the Buddhist University is housed within the temple compound. A restaurant, within the compound serves its own organically produced vegetarian dishes at reasonable prices.
My favourite temple in Chiang Mai. Beautiful chedi and the Princesses cemetery makes it so special.