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Wat Phra That Doi Suthep Chiang Mai Thailand

   Wat Phra That Doi Suthep Chiang Mai Thailand is approached by a steep flight of 300 stairs flanked by green trees and guarded by 16th-century Naga (snake) figures. An easier, if less atmospheric, route is via an adjacent funicular.The temple is part of  Wat Phra That Doi Suthep National Park, a richly forested area supporting some 330 species of birds. The park also includes Phuping Palace and Mon Tha Than Falls, the later believed by some to contain evil spirits.

WAT PHRA THAT DOI SUTHEP CHIANG MAI THAILAND

   Wat Phra That Doi Suthep mountain rises about 1000m (3,542 ft) above sea level; there are fine views over the city of Chiang Mai to be had from the temple's lower terrace. The terrace is surrounded by large bells that are rung by pilgrims to bring good luck. On the northwest corner of the terrace is a statue of the legendary elephant who chose the site of the temple.

WAT PHRA THAT DOI SUTHEP CHIANG MAI THAILAND

   Enclosed by a frescoed cloister, the upper terrace is home to a tightly-packed complex of small shrines, bells, golden umbrellas and Buddha statues. Shoes must be removed and shoulders must be covered before entering this sacred area.

WAT PHRA THAT DOI SUTHEP CHIANG MAI THAILAND

   In the center of the upper terrace is the great chedi, a 16th-century expansion of the 14th-century original. The dazzling gold-plated temple is modeled on Wat Phra That Haripunjaya in Lamphun, formerly the greatest temple in the Chiang Mai region.

WAT PHRA THAT DOI SUTHEP CHIANG MAI THAILAND

   Wat Phra That Doi Suthep hosts Northern Thailand's largest celebrations of Maha Puja, the anniversary of the Buddha's sermon, and Visakha Puja, the Buddha's birthday. Both are marked with candlelit processions up the mountain to the temple.


WAT PHRA THAT DOI SUTHEP CHIANG MAI THAILAND