Discover Grand Palace & Wat Phra Kaew - Bangkok
The Grand Palace is located in the heart of the City of Bangkok and is known to be one of the most visited architectural marvels in Thailand. This place is riddled with grand Chinese statues, mythical beasts known as Yakshas, and Stone Buddha images, who keep a watchful eye to those who enter and exit this sacred space.The Grand Palace is definitely the destination of choice for tourists who want to relive Thailand’s past. It is, after all, the home of the royal family since the year 1782. The Grand palace houses numerous buildings – most of which have been accessible to the public – however, if travelers wish to follow the crowd then they opt to visit The Temple of the Emerald Buddha, locally known as the Wat Phra Kaew. Tranquility and spirituality are the main ambiances of this temple, because even though it is known to be one of Thailand’s most sacred Buddhist temples, this is where the emerald Buddha can be found. Backpackers will come face-to-face with Thailand’s most divine being, and feel his presence resonate within the temple’s golden walls.
Trip Guru advises potential travelers to follow the rules that are heavily implemented in the Grand Palace. Men and women cannot expose their legs, arms, and feet, and should not stray away from the accessible points of the palace. It is a sign of respect and it will make the stay worth the while. Also, since the Grand Palace is the central point for most Thai vacations, tourists will have no problem checking out the other temples nearby, such as Wat Pho and Wat Ratchabophi, because they basically share the same dress code.
There are numerous ways tourists can get to the Grand Palace, but for an easier and more pleasurable journey, Trip Guru suggests to take the BTS Skytrain to Saphan Taksin Station – which is located atop the Sathorn “Central” Pier, and from there, take a Chao Phraya River Express boat to Chang Pier.
The best time to visit the Grand Palace is in the morning. Not only is it cooler, but it will give backpackers more than enough time to explore this beautiful place. Entrance fee costs around 500 Baht (11.24 USD) and it is opened from 8:30AM to 3:30PM (unless it is being used for state functions). Travelers may take an English guided tour, but for a more intimate and/or private session, an audio guide is also available for 100 Baht (2.81 USD). The audio guide is available in English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Japanese, and Mandarin.