Top of all Bangkok tourist attractions is ‘The Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew’. So being new to Bangkok it had to be done. It is Bangkok’s biggest tourist attraction and pilgrimage destination to Buddhists.
To be honest there are no words to really describe this beauty and detail of these building, with every last square of each room taken care of. The grounds are vast with about 94.5 hectares in total, encompassing both buildings and outdoor gardens, all designed by royalty since 1782.
As soon as you enter the main gates, directly infront of you is the ‘Royal monastery of the Emerald Buddha’- in other words what most people come and see. This is basically a shrine for the Emerald Buddha which sits on top of a traditional Thai style throne. The Emerald Buddha (which is actual made out of green jade) is only 66cm tall…lucky we went in September and the crowds were minimal! Unfortunately unless you make the effort to visit The Grand Palace you will never be able to see the Emerald Buddha as there is no photos allowed inside.
Around the rest of the grounds there is The Upper Terrace where a reliquary in the shape of golden chedi, the Mondop, the miniature Angkor Wat and the Royal Pantheon. Scattered around the terrace there are numerous statues of elephants and mythical beings.
Many of the walls are hand painted, initially from the reign of king Rama I and since then restored, which we saw on the day.
Further around the grounds there is The Borom Phiman Mansion, which is a Western Style building where any royal guests come and stay, as well as The Dusit Group consisting of the Throne Hall and pavilion.
This is a spectacular attraction, but comes with a price tag of 500Baht/person