Center Meditation Wat Mahadhatu
Located within Wat Mahathat, this small centre offers informal daily meditation classes. Taught by English-speaking Prasuputh Chainikom...
This temple is home to two independently operating meditation centres. The International Buddhist Meditation Center offers three-hour...
Serving as the spiritual keystone of Bangkok, Lak Meuang is a phallus-shaped wooden pillar erected by Rama I during the foundation of...
Hidden in plain sight across from Wat Phra Kaew is this decades-old shophouse restaurant. The menu spans Western/Chinese dishes (stewed...
bounded by Th Na Phra That, Th Ratchadamnoen Nai & Th Na Phra Lan · interesting places nearby
Sanam Luang information
On a hot day, Sanam Luang (Royal Field) is far from charming: a shadeless expanse of dying grass and concrete pavement ringed by flocks of pigeons and homeless people. Yet despite its shabby appearance, it has been at the centre of royal ceremony since Bangkok was founded.
Large funeral pyres are constructed here during elaborate, but infrequent, royal cremations, and explain the field’s alternate name, Thung Phra Men (Cremation Ground). The most recent cremation was a six-day, 300-million-baht ceremony for King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s sister, Princess Galyani Vadhana, in November, 2009; it took 11 months to prepare. Sanam Luang also draws the masses in December for the King’s Birthday (5 December), Constitution Day (10 December) and New Year.
Less dramatic events staged here include the annual Royal Ploughing Ceremony, in which the king (or more recently, the crown prince) officially initiates the rice-growing season, an appropriate location given that Sanam Luang was used to grow rice for almost 100 years after the royals moved into Ko Ratanakosin. After the rains, the kite-flying season (mid-February to April) sees the air above filled with butterfly-shaped Thai kites. Matches are held between teams flying either a ‘male’ or ‘female’ kite in a particular territory; points are won if they can force a competitor into their zone.