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A must-do sightseeing spot in Bangkok – the Grand Palace.


Built in 1782 at the same time Bangkok was made the capital of Siam by King Rama I.

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Although the King does not live here anymore, armed guards patrol the grounds. This garrison is located next to the entrance where people that are inappropriately dressed are stopped and asked to turn around or rent some conservative outfits. See the sign illustrating unacceptable clothing in an earlier post here.

grand palace-2There are several hundreds similar-looking buildings – so I will not do much annotation of the pictures. Much has been written up in Wikipedia here.

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Many of the buildings have skyward pointing spires. When they are lined up in a row, they look somewhat like hi-tech antennae.

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They are all incredibly ornate, all laden with history and religious significance.

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There are many gold statutes here and I cannot help but conclude that they inspired the creation of C3PO of Star Wars – and it is not just the gold body but also some hand gestures as well.

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A close up of the little supporters.

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A mini-replica of Angkor Wat in Cambodia which was for a number of years under Siamese control.

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The Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew (วัดพระแก้ว)) is the royal chapel inside the palace. Entrance to the chapel’s grounds is separate from the residential complex. It has even more ornate buildings than the residential palace.

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The emerald buddha is 26 inches tall carved from a single piece of jade with a rich history dating back to the 15th century. The King changes the cloak around the statue three times a year, corresponding to the summer, winter, and rainy seasons, an important ritual performed to usher good fortune to the country during each season.

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One Comment

  1. Those statues are huge and shiny.

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