Wat Phra Kaew in Chiang Rai

Wat Phra Kaew

Wat Phra Kaew, also known as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, is a famous and sacred temple located in the heart of Chiang Rai city in northern Thailand. It is one of the most important cultural and religious landmarks in the region and attracts thousands of visitors every year.


The temple was built in 1434 by King Saenmuangma, the founder of Chiang Rai city. It was originally called Wat Pa Yia, but was later renamed Wat Phra Kaew after the discovery of a small jade Buddha image.

The temple was destroyed during the Burmese invasion in 1487 and was rebuilt in the 19th century by King Rama III. It has since undergone several renovations and expansions, including the addition of a new ubosot (ordination hall) in 1991.


Wat Phra Kaew features a mix of Lanna and Thai architectural styles, with intricate carvings and decorations adorning the buildings and structures. The main feature of the temple is the ubosot, which houses the famous Emerald Buddha statue.

The temple also has several other buildings and structures, including a chedi (stupa), a viharn (assembly hall), and a bot (preaching hall). The grounds are beautifully landscaped and feature lush gardens, ponds, and statues.

Visiting Wat Phra Kaew

Wat Phra Kaew is open daily from 8am to 5pm. Admission is free, but visitors are required to dress modestly and remove their shoes before entering the temple buildings. Photography is allowed, but flash photography is not permitted inside the ubosot.

Visitors can explore the temple grounds on their own or take a guided tour. There are also several souvenir shops and food vendors on the premises.


Wat Phra Kaew is located at the intersection of Thanalai Road and Phaholyothin Road in the center of Chiang Rai city. The approximate latitude and longitude coordinates are 19.9089° N, 99.8317° E.