Wat Pa Dong Rai in Thailand
Thailand is full of beautiful and majestic temples that have been crafted by talented locals. This giant floating lotus temple in Udon Thani, Wat Pa Dong Rai or Santiwanaram Temple stretches out to the middle of a lake. It’s tucked away in this Northeastern province of Thailand and is an hour drive from Udon Thani.
More beautiful temples around Thailand:
Floating temple in a lake
This floral temple was built in 2019, giving the structure its modern appeal; the building ascends 19 metres above lake-level. The reason behind the white lotus architecture is that these flowers are seen as a symbol of purity in Buddhist belief.
Image credit: @ly_jia
Lotuses are also seen as a symbol of resilience in Buddhist culture. The flora typically grow out of mud under murky waters – which is comparable to the human life cycle – as followers believe suffering is an integral part of life.
Once the lotus is fully grown and above water, it is said to have reached its matured form; thus achieving enlightenment.
Image credit: @arch_ohnattanan
Buddhists believe that deities reside within sacred sites, like Wat Pa Dong Rai. Therefore, like many Thai temples, Naga – mythical serpent and considered a divine creature in Buddhist legends – statues stand guard and protect the site from negative energy and beings.
Nagas play a role in Buddhist lore as they were said to shield the Buddha whilst he was meditating in a storm, ensuring he was safe.
Image credit: @nookk_26js
The temple is relatively new, and not yet quite popular amongst locals and tourists.
Image credit: @thailandinsider
Whilst the sun is setting, the evening lights shimmer with reflective and colourful radiance.
A unique floating temple
Northeastern Thailand is overlooked by locals and tourists alike, so it’s the perfect destination if you’re looking for a quiet holiday sans crowds of selfie-sticks. This temple can be on top of your list of places to visit.
Image credit: @yinky_ny
Like many temples, they require visitors to wear garments that cover your knees and shoulders. It’s also common courtesy to maintain the peace in a site of worship – especially if someone is praying there.