The Grand Palace

Major tourist attraction of the Grand Palace

The Grand or Royal Palace is situated between two old temple; Wat Phra Chetuphon (Wat Pho) to the south and Wat Mahathat (Wat Salak) to the north.

Sutthaisawan Prasat on the eastern wall of the Grand Palace. A porch with Siha Banchon, in the middle from which the King gives audience to the public

Walled with forts were constructed along the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo

Gilded lacquer double-leaved door

    The land on which the Palace stands had earlier been occupied by the Chinese community. King Rama I required them to move to a piece of land between the canal of Wat Samplum and Wat Sampheng, tree kilometres further south. Construction began in A.D. 1782 and was completed in time for the coronation of Rama I. The living quarters were temporary residences of wood with thatched roofs, and the walls of the Palace were wooden palisades. After the coronation the King moved into a mansion built of permanent materials. The only other buildings in permanent materials were in Wat Phra Si Rattanasatsadaram (Temple of the Emerald Buddha) and the forts around the walls. A second coronation ceremony in full form according to the old tradition was held in A.D. 1785.
    The plan of this new royal palace followed that of the Ayutthaya period: the river formed a moat on side; the site of the Temple of the Emerald Buddha corresponded to the site of Wat Phra Si Sanphet in the old royal palace at Autthaya. Many of the other main buildings also correspond to those at the palace in Ayutthaya, the Phra Maha Monthian being in the same position as Phra-Thinang Wihan Somdet, and Phra-Thinang Dusit Mahaprasat standing for Phra-Thinang Suriyatamarin in Ayutthaya. Only the central building seen today, which would correspond to Phra-Thinang Sanphet Prasat, was missing until constructed as the Chakri Maha Prasat during the reign of Rama V.
    The area of the Royal Palace when it was first built was about 51 acres; the southern side that now abuts Wat Pho was an expansion by Rama II. The temple and the palace were separated by a road nmed Thai Wang (Back of the Palace). The total area is now about 60 acres.
The Royal Palace contains a number of halls, residences and other buildings with were built in the time of Rama I. Later monarches altered some and renovated others, while others were enlarged or pulled down to make way for new buildings.
Major tourist attraction of the Grand Palace
  • The Phra Maha Monthian Group
  • Phra Maha Prasat Group
  • The Phra-Thinang Chakri Maha Prasat Group
  • Boromphiman Monthian and the group of Edifices in the Siwalai Garden
  • Pavilions on the wall of the Grand Palace

  • Phra-Thinang Chakri Maha Prasat

      Grand Palace & Wat Phra Kaeo, located in the same compound in the very heart of Bangkok, are most frequently visited by foreign tourists and local people alike. The Grand Palace is famous for its impressive building. Wat Phra Kaeo is renowned as the most beautiful and important Buddhist temple in Thailand. It enshrines Phra Kaeo Morakot, the highly revered Buddha image carved from a single block of emerald. It is so richly and and intricately decorated that, once entering the temple, visitors fell as if they were in the "city of angels", as Bangkok is known to Thais. Open daily from 08.30 a.m. to 15.30 p.m.
      Open daily from 8.30 am - 3.30 pm. Admission is 125 baht.

    The southeast forts of the Grand Palace and the Wihan of the Reclining Buddha of Wat Pho (right)

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