Wat Arun is better known as The Temple Of Dawn and stands on the banks of Bangkok's main river - The Chao Praya (River Of Kings). Wat arun is short for the full name: Wat Arunratchataram and the name Arun comes from the Hindu god of dawn Aruna.
The Temple Of Dawn is made up of 5 "prangs" or spires; the 80 metre high central prang and then 4 small prangs located in each corner of a "square" surrounding the central prang.
It is possible to climb the central prang to a viewing platform but the steps are steep so only try this if fit and healthy. If you do manage to make the climb, you'll be rewarded with superb views of the river and surrounding areas.
The most visually impressive time to see Wat Arun is to go at dusk, when the sun is setting; and then also when it has got darker and the spot lights come on and bring the temple to life.
When the sun shines, there is a constant twinkle as the sun rays bounce off the hundreds of thousands of small porcelain pieces that have been used to adorn the prangs. Apprently, the porcelain came from Chinese trade boats that used them as balast.
Getting To The Temple Of Dawn
The best and probably most scenic way of getting to Wat Arun would be to get to Thaksin Bridge (Saphan Thaksin) which you can do by taxi or skytrain, and then take the river ferry up to Tha Arun which is right next to The Temple Of Dawn.
You can join guided tours which will encompass a number of the temples in the local area. A typical tour would take in Wat Arun, Wat Po (Reclining Buddha), Wat Pra Kaew (Emerald Buddha) and The Grand Palace. Prices for tours such as this range from about 3,600 Baht for a single person, to 1,130 Baht per person for groups of 30 people or more.
Going It Alone
Guided tours get you to where you want to go and back again with very little fuss but it's quite easy to do this tour yourself and save a tidy sum.
Best Time To Visit
Map To The Temple Of Dawn in Bangkok
|Kao Sarn Park Resort||Rating out of 10|
Located in the middle of Kao Sarn road, this hotel has 47 clean rooms with decent facilities.
AVG Price: $28
|Prince Palace Hotel|
Part of the BoBae market building, this is an up=market hotel for the Khao Sarn area.
Plenty of things to do and see in the area and quick ferry to shopping areas. Good facilities too.
AVG Price: $46
|Navalai River Resort|
|A little further away from Khao San road but still close enough to enjoy it without being part of it. Good facilities and close to the river to help keep you cool..||Score: 8.5
AVG. Price: $65
|Villa Cha Cha|
|Close to Kao Sarn road and yet far enough away so as not to be disturbed by it.
Cosy accommodation is a Thai style.
Good accommodation for travelers
|209 rooms and set just around the corner from Kao Sarn Road in a quite road but it's just a minute or two's walk and close by The Grand Palace.||
AVG. Price: $43
|Situated opposite The Grand Hyatt Erawan, the Erawan shrine and Gaysorn shopping Centre, The Holiday Inn Bangkok offers reasonable rates, good facilities||
AVG. Price: $89
|Situated opposite Central World, the Arnoma Hotel provides good accommodation in an excellent location. Close to Skytrains, excellent shopping, restaurants and entertainment. Few hotels at this price offer such a good location.||
AVG. Price: $61