Explore a Pink Temple With a Dragon Coiled Around it in Thailand

A striking pink, 17-story Buddhist temple in Khlong Mai, Thailand, with a green and gold dragon coiled around its exterior, is a surprisingly obscure destination. The design for Wat Samphran—otherwise known as the Dragon Temple—came to a member of the Bhavana Buddho sect during an extended fasting meditation. The dragon, whose face looks towards the sky, represents the human spiritual journey from base sorrow to transcendent joy. Much of the dragon’s interior is a hollow concrete tunnel, which visitors can traverse to reach the top of the Dragon Temple.

Dragon temple Wat Samphran in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, south east asia

Dragon temple Wat Samphran in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand
Photo by depositphotos.com

Wat Samphran welcomes visitors daily. Despite its unique exterior, the Dragon Temple is not widely featured in guidebooks and remains relatively unknown to most travelers. There is no admission fee, but several donation boxes are available for visitors to offer contributions to the Buddhist monks who live and meditate at the temple.

The Dragon Temple’s interior features several Buddha statues, columns with Buddhist words of wisdom, and a sculpture of a tree symbolizing abundance, spiritual growth, and happiness. Visitors can write their name on a red ribbon adorned with marigolds and deposit it in a golden tray on the temple’s roof for good luck.

Visitors can climb to the top of the Dragon Temple for a stunning bird’s-eye view of Khlong Mai. They can also stand face-to-face with the dragon’s gaping mouth, touch its beard, and make a secret wish that, according to the monks of Wat Samphran, almost always comes true. The temple’s roof also houses several sacred spots where prayers for peace, prosperity, and happiness can be offered for oneself and loved ones.

Climbing to the top of the Dragon Temple is somewhat arduous. It is advisable to drink plenty of water and have a snack handy to stay hydrated as you approach the dragon’s beard. Thankfully, several food carts selling snacks and beverages are located outside the temple.

One of the Dragon Temple’s most striking features is the dragon’s five outstretched claws, symbolizing the Five Precepts of Buddhism. Wat Samphran is an ornate, colorful temple, created with tremendous thoughtfulness and care. Regardless of your religious beliefs, a visit to the Dragon Temple is likely to leave you feeling uplifted, renewed, and relieved that the dragon beard you touched for good luck did not belong to an actual fire-breathing dragon.

Khlong Mai, 73110

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