Photo: Ubon is a fabulous eating destination.

Wat Maha Wanaram (Wat Pa Yai)

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Affectionately called Wat Pa Yai, the somewhat gaudy Wat Maha Wannaram was established in 1807 by Ubon’s second ruler.

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Photo of Wat Maha Wanaram (Wat Pa Yai)

It’s regarded as the principal wat in Ubon, containing one of the province’s most sacred Buddha images.

The large and striking stucco image, Phrachao Yai In Paeng, was crafted in the Lao style and has been completely covered in glittering gold leaf. It now sits in a modern hall with seven tiered roofs leading up to a golden spire that was still being worked on when we passed through. Set next to the original ordination hall and adorned with carved sandstone panels depicting scenes from the Buddha’s life, the building certainly does catch the eye.

Wat Pa Yai is the centre of merit making in Ubon, drawing busloads of Thais who kneel before the Buddha to wish for everything from a handsome boyfriend to a fortunate rebirth in a heavenly realm. Then they offer donations, explaining the temple’s not-so-modest appearance. Though great for the buses, the sprawling car park leaves something to be desired from an aesthetic standpoint.

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What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Ubon Ratchathani.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda or Booking
 Read up on where to eat on Ubon Ratchathani.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Ubon Ratchathani.
 Read up on how to get to Ubon Ratchathani, or book your transport online with 12Go Asia.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Ubon Ratchathani? Please read this.
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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Ubon Ratchathani? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Thailand.

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