Wat Bot Muang

An ancient temple near the old town

Photo of , , Chanthaburi

What we say: 3 stars

A short walk towards the old town from King Taksin shrine takes you past Wat Bot Muang, which sits on a hill between Benchamarachuthis Road and Sukhapiban Road.

Believed to be the oldest temple in Chan, this Ayutthaya-era wat features several charming old temple buildings and a small but striking viharn clustered around a grassy lawn. The viharn features Indian-style murals of the Buddha's life and a 1,000-year-old stone lintel of Khmer design that depicts Indra doing what looks like disco dance moves on his three-headed elephant, Erawan.

Other oddities like a wooden crocodile lurking in a small stone tub, a tubby statue of Maitreya (the future buddha) and some rather goofy looking guardian statues can also be seen here.

We were greeted by the temple's eccentric and elderly abbot who outright asked us for a donation so he could build a new doorway. The temple isn't worth losing sleep over if missed, but given its central locale it is worth a quick peek.


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