This stunning but non-touristy temple is thought to have been built by a son of the town's first ruler, Chama Thewi, in the early eighth century.
It's said that one of the weathered yet striking Mon-style chedis adorned with standing Buddha images contains the ashes of the great queen herself, and the chedis found here are considered the best examples of Dvaravati-period architecture in Lamphun.
History buffs will further appreciate the murals in the main viharn building that depict scenes from Chama Thewi's rise to power, and also an ancient Mon inscription discovered in the temple grounds.
Wat Chama Thewi is set in shady, pleasant grounds near the river; hardly anyone else was around during our most recent visit, which we appreciated after joining hordes of local tourists at the larger and more prestigious Wat Prathat Haripunchai in the centre of town.
The wat is also known as Wat Kukut (wat without top) in reference to a gold top of the chedi which was removed long ago.
How to get there
This wat is around two kilometres to the west of central Lamphun. To get there you can either take a 15-minute walk down Chama Thewi Road or get a rickshaw to take you there.
By Mark Ord
Last updated on 25th May, 2015.
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