Wat Chedi Luang Place guide

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Chiang Mai

Wat Chedi Luang

The beloved Wat Chedi Luang was one of the most impressive temples in Chiang Mai.

About

The beloved Wat Chedi Luang was one of the most impressive temples in Chiang Mai. Built over 600 years ago, during the reign of King Saen Muang Ma, this sprawling compound with a 15th-century towering chedi, has proven to stand the test of time. Damaged during an earthquake in 1545, the chedi’s height was reduced in half, yet it still retains its striking Lanna-style characteristics, which make it naturally ooze majesty and history.

At the height of its glory days, the pagoda measured approximately 60m across and 80m tall, and was the original home of the highly venerated Emerald Buddha. However, the Emerald Buddha was transferred to its own temple in Bangkok, leaving the king to donate a replica that was placed in the eastern niche of the chedi.

You can find stone Buddha statues around the other niches in the temple. If you head to the southern side, you’ll find the base of the area decorated with elephant statues. If you head to the western side, you’ll see a small open shed with a reclining Buddha image stored inside. Other noteworthy structures or landmarks in the area include the city pillar (intakin) and the giant gum tree which guards the entrance to the temple. Legend has it that if this tree ever falls, a great catastrophe will follow.

Good to know

  • While a popular tourist attraction in Chiang Mai, Wat Chedi Luang is first and foremost a sacred and religious site, and must be treated with respect.
  • It is advisable to wear clothing that covers the legs, shoulders, and feet as Thai temples generally have a strict dress code. People who do not follow the dress code may be denied entrance.
  • Refrain from conversing with the monks, as it may distract them from their meditation.
  • Entrance fee: Free
  • Operating hours: 6:00am to 6:00pm

How to get there

You can find Wat Chedi Luang on Prapokklao Road, which runs roughly through the north-south center line of the old city, from Changpuak Gate to Chaing Mai Gate. The temple is just a short walk south of the intersection of the main east-west Ratchadamnoen Road.

Address: 103 Road King Prajadhipok Phra Singh, Muang District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand

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