Thai painter-turned-architect Chalermchai Kositpipat; that’s the man behind this magnificent White Temple, Thailand.

MY TRIP TO THE WHITE TEMPLE, THAILAND

I was travelling in a mini bus from the Laos boarder when we stopped at this is surreal and bizarre temple. At first sight it looks like something out of a sci-fi movie, a palace or some sort of fantasy world however once you step closer and take in the incredible architectural detail, you soon realise there is a lot more to it than meets the eye. The White Temple, Thailand truly is a temple with a twist.

White Temple Thailand

No Ordinary Temple

The temple is painted white, symbolising Buddhist purity and covered in shards of mirror that reflect the sun, giving the whole building another dimension. All around the complex are intricate sculptures, demons, skulls, heads handing from trees and other weirdly wonderful things. The photo below shows a bottle of whisky. Could this be a demon or perhaps a sin?

White Temple

White Temple Thailand

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Below is a little insight into what the white temple beholds however don’t feel you need to understand Wat Rong Khun. I arrived knowing next to nothing about the temple or its architect and found that even though I now understand the meaning behind many of its fascinating connotations, drawing your own understanding and ideas on its meaning can be even more profound and memorable. One thing to be certain on however; this temple needs to be added to your list of must see’s!

White Temple ThailandPhoto Credit: George Estreich 

Before entering the temple you walk across the bridge that flies over hundreds of outreaching arms. This is meant to symbolise desire however feels more like a scene out of Hercules or Clash of the Titans in Hades underworld.

White Temple Thailand

INSIDE THE TEMPLE

Once you enter the temple you’ll be hit with a complete contrast to that of other temples. The White Temple, Thailand does not explore the typical traditional Buddhist life scenarios but indulges you in scenes far more familiar to modern society. Murals of Batman, Superman, Predator and even Keanu Reeves as Neo from The Matrix surround you on ever wall. One wall even depicts 9/11. Other walls display spaceships and a scene depicting the end of the world….. I’m sure by now you can see this isn’t your typical asian temple.

Temple Thailand

Thailand Temple

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It isn’t all doom and gloom however, there are of course Buddha statues that resemble peace and outside, lush acreage of Buddhist gardens adding tranquility to Wat Rong Khun.

The white temple is still a work in progress and shall remain so for some years to come. It is planned to comprise nine buildings including the ubosot (chapel), pagoda, crematorium, monastery hall, preaching hall and museum to name a few.

This astonishing temple is an absolute must see for anyone and everyone who find themselves in Thailand’s, Chang Rai. The White Temple’s sheer wow factor is enough to impress and is highly worthy of a photograph or 12. I’m looking forward to returning in the near future and see how much more has been added. I’m sure any new additions will simply add even further dimensions to this truly mesmerising place.