Chao Phraya River Cruise and Wat Arun Tour in Bangkok, Thailand -

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Chao Phraya River Cruise and Wat Arun Tour in Bangkok, Thailand

Any Bangkok, Thailand temple visit isn't complete without including a Wat Arun tour as well as a Chao Phraya river cruise to reach the temple's location. 

Wat Arun Tour in Bangkok, Thailand

Wat Arun Tour

Wat Arun or the Temple of Dawn doesn't have a famed attraction like the Emerald Buddha of Wat Phra Kaew or the Reclining Buddha of Wat Pho but cruising towards this temple complex with a view of the city surrounding you throughout the cruise is well worth the trip.

This was the last stop for our one-day compressed Bangkok temple tour. You can also start with this location if it's closer to your hotel. 


It was still mid-afternoon when we stopped by, almost near closing time. If you stick around till late afternoon, you might chance upon an IG-worthy view of the temple from afar at sunset. 

The temple's name was derived though from from the Hindi god Aruna, who was associated with the sun. So the view is similarly spectacular during sunrise. 

Wat Arun Tour

Images (up and down) of the entrance, close to the pier. 

Right outside are stores. There are more shops at one side of the complex.

Wat Arun entrance

Khmer-Style Towers

The prangs (towers influenced by Khmer architecture) are also unique in Wat Arun.

Khmer-Style Towers

They boast of intricately patterned colorful porcelain with seashell walls. 

Take a look at the patterns up close...

At the bottom are figures of ancient Chinese soldiers. Supposedly, there are animals too but I didn't notice much. 

Central Prang and the Trident of Shiva

The main phrang, measuring 66.8 m by 86 m stands tall, is surrounded by four smaller prangs. It's highest point is called the Trident of Shiva. 

Central Prang and the Trident of Shiva


Apart from the rich texture of the structure, there is supposedly a symbolic meaning to every layer. 

Traiphum - the base section which represents all realms of existence 
Tavatimsa - middle area for gratification of desires 
Devaphum - top which indicate the six heavens and seven realms of happiness

Top, mid, bottom ⬆️

Cats in the Temple

Elephants are the animals most revered in Thailand; cats are for ancient Egypt. But the cat-person in me can't help but find a new furry friend when I saw stray cats (or maybe nearby shops own them) around. Here's one of them. 

I found her by the hallway of this temple. She's not allowed inside and so are snapshots and slippers. 

Buddha Statues and More 

I got a few snaps of some Buddha statues within the complex at least. 

Buddha Statues wat arun
Mini-golden buddha

One of the wall fixtures at the temple above

These clusters of buddha statues below is somewhat similar to the collection displayed at Wat Pho although there are more in the latter (around 400 in number). 

Getting from Wat Pho to Wat Arun

Like Wat Phra Kaew to Wat Pho which only takes a few minutes walk, getting from Wat Pho to Wat Arun is also easy. Just walk towards the Tha Tien market and find the pier where ferries cruising the Chao Phraya river are docked. 

Chao Phraya River Cruise 

Express boats charge just (about) 4 baht to cross the river. The fee is naturally higher if you hop from a pier farther from this area. There are also luxurious cruises which offer dinner by the ferry after a tour of the temple. 

Book the Chao Phraya Princess Cruise here!

More Information

Wat Arun is located at 158 Thanon Wang Doem, Khwaeng Wat Arun, Khet Bangkok Yai, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon, Thailand.

It's open from 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM with an entrance fee of 50 baht.

More about a tour of Bangkok, Thailand through this post: 

2-Day Itinerary for Bangkok, Thailand

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