Photo: Wat Doem has a large wax-carving workshop, where artists create sculptures of mostly Hindu-Buddhist icons.

Wat Doem

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While Phimai is best known for its ancient Khmer art and architecture, Wat Doem is also worth a stop to check out some unusual Lao-style Buddha images in an active Theravada Buddhist temple.

Photo of Wat Doem

The highlight of Wat Doem (rhymes with “worm”) is a roughly three-metre-tall seated Buddha image depicted in the subduing Mara posture with a gentle expression on the face. To its right sits an unusual black-and-gold Buddha image, while on the left is a dark-crimson seated Buddha. Both are just slightly smaller than the principal image.

The neighbouring ordination hall features a smaller seated Buddha overshadowed by a vivid string of murals depicting scenes from the Buddha’s life. Look to the seated Buddha’s left to see a poignant portrayal of the Buddha’s parinibbana -- the moment when his physical body is said to have perished and his awareness extinguished into the state of Nirvana.

As one of Phimai’s largest temples, Wat Doem has a large wax-carving workshop where local artists create life-size sculptures of mostly Hindu-Buddhist icons, which are placed on a huge float for the Khao Pansa parade held annually around July (exact dates change with the lunar cycle). Do pop in to watch the artists at work if visiting in the months leading up to the festival.


Wat Doem
Romsai Rd, just north of the historical park, Phimai
Admission: Free

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 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Phimai.
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