Discover Wat Ounalom - Phnom Phen
There comes a time in every traveler’s visit wherein they just want to sit down and rest for a moment. Visiting a foreign land and exploring every known attraction can get pretty exhausting – especially if they are focusing on several cities. In Cambodia however, there is one perfect place wherein both the locals and travelers alike can escape the hustle and bustle of Phnom Penh, and bathe under the guiding light of Buddha; and it is called Wat Ounalom.
Located on Sisowath Quay near the Royal Palace of Cambodia, Wat Ounalom was constructed in the year 1443 and is known to be the center of Caombodian Buddhism. This sacred area consists of 44 structures, which range from tall, ivory stupas, to two floored pagodas, and is made home to a handful of monks. With its paths paved with warm colored roads and fenced within a maroon stone wall, Wat Ounalom has become the little spot of tranquility a lot of fatigued travelers hope for.
Although the overall scenery of Wat Ounalom can calm the spirit, there are a few points of interests, in which Trip Guru suggests that you need to visit. Behind the main temple, Chetdai – a 500 year old stupa – was said to be the building where Lord Buddha’s eyebrow is preserved. Within its walls, beings from both Hinduism and Buddhism share the space, with four bronze images of the enlightened one sits facing a cardinal direction, and figures of Vishnu, the Garuda, and Lord Yama on his buffalo pepper the surroundings. Another location would be the image of Samdech Huot Tat, who was the fourth Buddhist patriarch executed by Pol Pot, which is placed at the northeast corner of the main complex.
Wat Ounalom is open from 6:00AM to 6:00PM and the entrance is free of charge. Getting here will only take you a few minutes of walking. From Phnom Penh’s Central Market, head south to Charles de Gaulle Boulevard and then a slight right onto Neayok Souk. From there, turn right onto Preah Norodom Boulevard and then turn left onto 172 St. Not before long, you will see Wat Ounalom closing into your sights.