Saturday, June 24, 2006

Wat Pho, Bangkok - Thailand

Wat Pho Temple Sight Bangkok Thailand The Oldest temple. The Biggest temple with largest number of pagoda. The Largest collection of Buddha image. Wat Pho, or Wat Phra Chetuphon as it is generally known to the Thais, is mainly famous for the huge Reclining Buddha statue it houses. At 20 acres large, it is the largest Wat in Bangkok, and is technically the oldest too, as it was built around 200 years before Bangkok became Thailand's capital. However, today the Wat today bears virtually no resemblance to that originally constructed, as it was almost entirely rebuilt by Rama I when the capital was moved to Bangkok. It holds the dual honors of having both Thailand's largest reclining Buddha image and the most number of Buddha images in Thailand.

Wat Pho Temple Bangkok Thailand Massage - Wat Pho is also famous as Thailand's first university, and is center for traditional Thai masage - the rich, famous and powerful have all been known to come here. Inscribed on stone in the walls of Wat Pho are all that was known about Thai massage dating from the reign of King Rama III (most previous texts were lost when the Burmese destroyed Ayuthaya) To get a traditional massage here costs 150B for 30 mins, 250B for an hour and herbal massages are available at 350B an hour. If you want to experience traditional Thai massage, this is probably the best place available and is highly recommended, though be aware that it's not exactly a gentle experience. A foot reflexology massage is also available at 250B for 45 minutes. It is also possible to take courses to learn traditional Thai massage. These are for 30 hours and cost 4,500B. Courses can be spread over either 10 or 15 days. The massage center is situated at the back of the Wat, the opposite side from the entrance. To get a massage, simply turn up here and wait in line until a masseur is available - perhaps 10 or 20 minutes in the quieter periods in the early morning and late afternoon.

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