The Grand Palace in Bangkok has another, unpronounceable for a European, name – Phrabarommaharadchavang – and this is a central place for tourists to visit in Thailand. It can be said that a mandatory part of the tour to the capital, as in any tourist mecca that is on every continent. Everyone visiting the palace has the most vivid impressions of the picturesque place. Here, literally everything is interesting – history, architecture, objects endowed with a sacred meaning, as well as a harmonious combination of various cultural elements on a common palace territory.
Despite the abundance of tourist groups, the royal palace in Bangkok is hospitably open for viewing in the afternoon and in the evening. After sunset in the rays of illumination, the palace looks very peculiar, therefore it is recommended to definitely find the opportunity to admire this evening spectacle.
The Grand Royal Palace in Bangkok was originally conceived and created as an attraction. Its history dates back to the end of the 18th century. (1782). Then the ruler of the country decided to equip the capital in Bangkok, for which it was necessary to build the residence of the king and at the same time organize the location of the government. For almost three and a half centuries of the palace’s existence, the architectural complex has undergone numerous restructuring, modification and modernization.
Each owner of the monastic apartments brought certain innovations to the object, sought to improve, modernize, and also maintain majesty. The complex served as the seat of the kings until the middle of the last century, when the next royal family decided to relocate. Nowadays, the Grand Royal Palace in Thailand is not used for housing, although it is periodically used for special receptions and state celebrations.
The first buildings of the palace were made of wood, which were later replaced by stone ones. On the territory of the modern palace, which occupies almost 220 thousand square meters. m, there are several dozen objects – different buildings and structures, halls, temples, sculptures, museums, galleries and other structures for various purposes.
What to see in the palace
Photos of the royal palace in the city of Bangkok convey certain aspects of the beauties presented on the territory, but they will never be able to cover the entire scale of objects. The entire palace complex has a rectangular shape and is surrounded by a wall with a total length of almost 2 km. When studying the buildings of the large palace, one should be guided by the location of the sights and their accessibility to visit.
This is a whole complex of buildings (there are 12 of them) in the territory of the Grand Palace of Bangkok. According to reviews, this is the most memorable part of the palace, which is advised to pay special attention. Painted walls, images of lotus flowers, scenes from royal life, gold jewelry, ornaments, carvings, unique details, skillfully finished by craftsmen – all this makes an indelible impression. In particular, the main attractions of the temple complex:
- Royal library
- Royal pantheon
- Golden stupa
- Jade Buddha Statue
- Kings Cemetery
- Actually Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew).
Due to its beauty, the Temple of the Emerald Buddha was honored to become a place of coronation.
This is a dozen ornate, but at the same time harmonious and very beautiful buildings that served as the residence of the ruler until 1946. For example, noteworthy visitors here are a luxurious hall for special guests’ ceremonial receptions, as well as a throne room, pavilions for preparing the monarchs for the ceremony, a place of blessing by the monks of royal food, and much more.
A building with its own bright personality does not need a special search, it is itself distinguished by the originality of architecture and attracts the eye. The exterior of the building resembles European architectural solutions, and only the roof in a purely Asian style gives out cultural identity.
Such an interesting combination in development is connected with royal family disagreements during construction. The king conceived a European palace to receive guests, and his family insisted on the Thai character of the building. Thus was created the “European in Thai hat.” A guard of honor available for photos is displayed at the porch and steps, and the ceremony of changing it, if you’re lucky, can also be seen. An exhibition of weapons belonging to the monarchs was immediately opened.
Here is the royal throne – the first to appear on the territory of the Grand Royal Palace in Bangkok. Such halls are used for public audiences, and the throne is an object endowed with special meaning and significance, richly inlaid with mother of pearl and decorated with carvings.
In addition to the mentioned attractions, among the palace buildings it is proposed to look into museums: weapons, coins (mint), the Emerald Buddha, textiles, etc. A walk usually turns into a many-hour excursion, although not all of the presented residential and government buildings are accessible for studying interiors.
How to get to the palace
The Grand Royal Palace in Bangkok occupies hundreds of thousands of square meters on the banks of the river, in the ancient city district, in the center of the capital. There is no subway laid here, therefore, when deciding how to get to the Royal Palace in Bangkok, you will have to choose one of the types of land or river transport. The road will take more time, but it will also allow you to get acquainted with the surroundings of the palace and the surrounding urban development.
As you know, the most suitable type of travel for replenishing your piggy bank of impressions is walking. If the distance is small – from Chinatown or Riverside, then this distance to the palace is easily overcome, because it is no more than 2 km or about half an hour, depending on which starting point. If you live in more remote parts of Bangkok, it is better to resort to public transport or a taxi.
The most budget option is a city bus. The fare is in the range of 0.2-0.7 US dollars, but transfers are not excluded. This is the cheapest way to get to the Grand Palace in Bangkok. In time, the journey can take up to an hour or more, but for travelers this is a chance to get acquainted with the flavor of Thai streets, everyday life features of citizens and feel the proximity of Asian identity.
Taxis and tuk-tuks are also common in Bangkok, and routes to the Grand Royal Palace are very popular and in demand. Since these modes of transport provide individual comfort in movement, the fare should be agreed in advance in each individual case. There are general approaches to pricing:
- TV taxi is usually taken into account the price of the first 2 km in the amount of 1 US dollar, for the next mileage an additional 0.14 US dollar / km is added. But there are adjustments due to traffic jams;
- with tuk-tuki, too, everything is individual – how to agree.
In any case, you can always ask in advance at the reception of your hotel in Bangkok, the better to get to the palace and at what price it will cost.
The metro can help, for example, get to the river pier, from which it is convenient to go by boat to the nearest shore section equipped with transport. The price of a boat taxi starts from half a dollar if you sail from the nearby Siam urban area.
- Address: Thanon Na Phra Lan, Phra Nakhon District, Bangkok
- Opening hours: 8: 30-16: 30, to let visitors in and sell tickets stop an hour before closing.
- Ticket price: $ 15 + $ 6 audio guide if desired.
- Official website: www.palaces.thai.net
- Dress code: Cropped trousers and dresses, as well as T-shirts, tops, etc. are prohibited at the walls of the palace-museum in Thailand. – this is strictly monitored by inspectors. If you do not take care of the appearance of the palace in advance, you are invited to use covered clothing for rent at the entrance to the complex. It’s free, $ 6 is left as a deposit. But this option, according to reviews, is not the best. Tourists always want to take a photo at the royal palace, everyone will want to leave the most pleasant impressions about this visit and look beautiful at the same time.
So that some features of the palace tour do not bring surprise, it is better to listen to the useful tips of visiting tourists.
- To visit the palace, it is advisable to arrive in advance, as the number of tourist groups is simply unbelievable, and in the case of the issuance of closing clothes, the waiting time in the heat increases.
- For visiting the temples on the territory of the complex, a separate fee is taken, this can greatly increase the cost of a general excursion, but the external sightseeing is quite informative and rich in impressions.
- The palace complex is open from 8:30, so you can approach it in the morning without listening to the owners of tuk-tuk, who can be tricky in their interests and offer to ride around the neighborhood until the palace opens at three in the afternoon – this is not true.
- The most complete impression of a visit to the palace can be made by using an audio guide that will help to weave together the architectural and historical features of the Grand Royal Palace in Bangkok.
The Grand Palace in Bangkok is a huge museum that contains historical layers saturated with Thai culture. To get acquainted with the main value of the Thai state means to join the wealth of the country’s cultural heritage. The palace complex worthily keeps its relics and continues to serve the royal dynasties of Thailand.