White temple with many ornaments next to a lake

Wat Rong Khun – The White Temple South of Chiang Rai

This post was last updated on February 17th, 2020 at 02:29 pm

The Wat Rong Khun, also known as the White Temple, is located just south of Chiang Rai, near Chiang Mai. The White Temple is still a fairly new temple and although the temple attracts more and more visitors every year, it is still relatively unknown among tourists. In Thailand itself, however, the temple has been eradicated into a national museum. Because of its color it is also one of the most recognizable temples in the country.


White Temple

The construction of the White Temple started in 1997 and is still not finished. They expect that it will take another 90 years for the entire complex to be finished. If you want to visit the complex when it is completely finished, you have to be patient 😉


The details at the White Temple are bizarre and it takes quite some time to study everything. As the name suggests, the White Temple has a white color. This color has been used to represent the purity of Buddha.


The road to the Wat Rong Khun is somewhat special. To get there you have to cross a bridge built over the “pit of hell“. In this well there are many human arms (fake of course) that anxiously rise from the ground.


Many fake arms coming up from the ground at white temple
There are many arms in the pit of hell, still a beautiful temple though!


TIP – Opening times are from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and admission is free. It is of course appreciated if you leave a small donation.


How to Get to Wat Rong Khun

The easiest way to visit the temple is to book a tour from Chiang Rai. The top is about a 20-minute drive from the city. You can take a taxi for around 1,000 baht (US$32.40, back and forth). A tuk-tuk costs a little less, around 400 baht (US$12.95, back and forth).


The bus is the cheapest option; count on about 20 baht (US$0.65).


TIP – Are you coming from Chiang Mai? Then count on a minimum of 3 hours’ drive.


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