Historic Chinese-Thai temple
Published/Last edited or updated: 18th August, 2021
Filled with exquisite murals and statuary in a mix of Chinese and Thai styles, Wat Matchimawat is Songkhla’s most revered and historic temple.
Also known as Wat Klang, the temple was established during the 17th century on land donated by a rich Chinese merchant. The Ayutthaya-style ordination hall houses a small Buddha image in an ornate pavilion surrounded by murals in the Central Thai style, depicting scenes from the Buddha’s life in elaborate fashion.
Outer walls feature Chinese-style decoration punctuated by Chinese warrior images that are similar to those found at Wat Pho in Bangkok.
Topped by a depiction of the Buddha teaching the Four Noble Truths for the first time after his enlightenment, a wihaan stands near a tiered chedi and Chinese-style pagoda. Tamarind and frangipani trees drape over the broad grounds, while the outer walls lead to images of yaksha giants kneeling directly over narrow Saiburi Road.
The temple also has a small museum set in an old wooden structure, though it was locked during our visit.
To get here from central Nang Ngam Road in the old town, walk east down Yala Road and you’ll come out across from the temple gate on Saiburi Road.
David Luekens first came to Thailand in 2005 when Thai friends from his former home of Burlington, Vermont led him on a life-changing trip. Based in Thailand since 2011, he spends much of his time eating in Bangkok street markets and island hopping the Andaman Sea.
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.