Skip to Content

Why these are the two best temples in Bangkok, Wat Arun & Wat Pho (Big Buddha)

Bangkok has a few temples… well, honestly, Bangkok has A LOT of temples! Varying costs and varying quality make it a little tricky to know exactly which ones are worth going to. We visited about 10 different ones whilst in Bangkok and we reckon Wat Arun (The iconic temple of Bangkok), and Wat Pho (home of the Big Buddha) are the two best to visit.
These temples fit well within our $5 travel plan, you’ll get some cool photos, be somewhat awed, and get a good feel for the Bangkok temple scene. Keep reading for a more in depth look…

Planning a Trip To Bangkok?

Here are our insider tips on tours and places to stay:

Top Tours and Cooking Classes in Bangkok

  1. Thai Organic Cooking Class: the Magic of Thai Cuisine -Traditional Thai Cooking Class
  2. Pink Chili – Thai Cooking Class TOP PICK!
  3. Bangkok by Night: Temples, Markets and Food by Tuk-Tuk
  4. Three BEST Temples Bangkok City Tour “Must Visit”

Top Hotels and Hostels in Bangkok

  1. Amari Watergate – great city views + rooftop pool
  2. The Printing House Poshtel – boutique hostel + also private rooms
  3. Samsen Street Hotel – Close to Khao San Road
  4. 1905 Heritage Corner Top Pick!
The main old town of Bangkok is mainly accessible by ferry, all of the modern travel options like the BTS (Skytrain) service the newer areas such as Siam & Silom and out to the airport. However, a trip along the river is well worth it and pretty cheap.

After taking the Skytrain down to Taksin (The south central hub for the ferry) we decided to try out the tourist ferry first as it has commentary and English speakers to tell you to get off at the stop you want. It is 30baht (single trip), rather than the 15baht average price of the regular fast ferry (that stops at all the main places). Unless you don’t have a tourist map and have no idea where you are going, get the regular ferry, the basic commentary is not worth the extra money.

We jumped off at the stop for Wat pho and took the cross river ferry (3baht, runs every 10 mins or so) to Wat Arun. This is one of the most recognisable temples of BKK, and for my money (which is 50baht entrance) is the best temple. Not only does it look awesome by day or at night, but you get to climb most of the way up for city views and the sheer novelty of the insanely steep steps.

Say good bye to your quads if you are in a hurry to see this place, ouch! but very worth it. The night shot below is from the day after when we headed past on the ferry again.

On a tight schedule after spending so long in the morning at the markets, we rushed back to the cross river ferry and headed over to Wat Pho (also 50baht entry). After 2 full days of temple hopping, and after just seeing Wat Arun, it took us a while to see what the fuss was all about. On the outside it is the home of a bunch of standard Thai temples….. When you get to the main temple, the home of the reclining Buddha, it all becomes clear……

It massive! The photo barely does it justice. If you have plenty of time have a wander around the grounds before heading into see the Buddha, because afterwards you might as well head on home… It really is the most impressive Buddha In Thailand! And probably in the top 5 in the world.

best hotels in Bangkok

Here’s our Top Hotel Picks for Bangkok