5 Things You Need to Know About Wat Rong Khun White Temple

Wat Rong Khun, also known as the White Temple, is a unique and fascinating attraction located in Chiang Rai, Thailand. Unlike traditional temples, the White Temple is a privately owned art exhibit that was designed by renowned Thai artist, Chalermchai Kositpipat.

The temple is known for its stunning white exterior, intricate carvings, and striking architecture. Visitors can explore the temple’s various buildings, each of which contains unique works of art and religious symbolism. The temple’s central building, the ubosot, is particularly impressive, with its ornate murals and intricate details.

The White Temple has become one of the most popular attractions in Chiang Rai, drawing visitors from all over the world. Its unique blend of traditional Buddhist symbolism and contemporary art has made it a must-see destination for anyone visiting northern Thailand. Whether you’re interested in art, religion, or simply want to experience something new and different, the White Temple is sure to leave a lasting impression.


Wat Rong Khun, also known as the White Temple, is a privately owned art exhibit in the style of a Buddhist temple in Pa O Don Chai, Mueang District, Chiang Rai Province, Thailand. The temple was designed, constructed, and opened to visitors in 1997 by Chalermchai Kositpipat, a famous Thai visual artist.

The original version of the temple was in very poor condition, and there were efforts to restore the original temple, but this was eventually scrapped due to a lack of funds. Khositpipat then took it upon himself to turn the temple into a masterpiece of modern art. He designed and constructed the modern temple with his own money and donations from local villagers.

The temple’s construction was not without controversy. Some traditionalists criticized Khositpipat’s modern design, which incorporates elements of Buddhist and Hindu mythology, as being disrespectful to the traditional Thai temple architecture. However, the temple has become a popular tourist attraction, drawing visitors from all over the world.

The work on the temple is ongoing, with projects scheduled through 2070. Khositpipat has said that only death can stop his dream, but cannot stop his project. The White Temple is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Chiang Rai and is a testament to the creativity and vision of its founder.


Wat Rong Khun is a unique temple that blends traditional Thai architecture with contemporary art. The temple’s exterior is entirely white, symbolizing the purity of Buddha, and is decorated with intricate carvings and sculptures. The temple’s design is meant to represent the path to enlightenment, with the bridge leading to the temple representing the crossing from the cycle of rebirth to Nirvana.

Inside the temple, visitors will find a stunning mural that covers the walls and ceiling. The mural is a modern interpretation of traditional Buddhist teachings and depicts scenes from popular culture, including Superman, Batman, and Hello Kitty. The mural is meant to convey the idea that Buddhist teachings are relevant and applicable to modern life.

The temple’s architecture is not the only unique aspect of Wat Rong Khun. The temple is also home to a number of contemporary art installations, including a giant golden toilet bowl and a sculpture of a demon emerging from the ground. These installations are meant to challenge visitors’ perceptions of art and religion and encourage them to think critically about the world around them.

Visitors to Wat Rong Khun should be aware that the temple is still under construction and may not be fully accessible. The temple is also a popular tourist destination, so visitors should expect large crowds and long lines. However, the temple’s unique architecture and art installations make it well worth the visit.


The Wat Rong Khun is not only a temple, but also a masterpiece of art. The artwork inside and outside the temple is breathtaking and mesmerizing. The temple is surrounded by a beautiful garden with sculptures of mythical creatures and demons.

As you enter the temple, you will be amazed by the intricate details of the artwork. The walls and ceilings are painted with beautiful murals that depict the cycle of life and death. The murals also illustrate the struggle between good and evil.

One of the most impressive artworks inside the temple is the Buddha image made entirely of gold leaf. The image is surrounded by smaller Buddha images, and the floor is covered with silver tiles that create a stunning reflection.

Another famous artwork inside the temple is the bridge of “The Cycle of Rebirth”. The bridge is guarded by two giant statues of demons, and as you walk across it, you will see hundreds of hands reaching up from the depths of hell.

The outside of the temple is equally impressive. The temple is covered in white plaster and decorated with small pieces of glass that shimmer in the sunlight. The intricate carvings on the walls and roof are made with a level of detail that is simply astounding.

If you are interested in art, you will not be disappointed by the artwork at Wat Rong Khun. The temple is a true masterpiece that combines traditional Thai art with modern techniques, creating a unique and unforgettable experience.

Visiting Information

If you’re planning to visit Wat Rong Khun, also known as the White Temple, there are a few things you should know before you go.

Firstly, the temple is located just outside of Chiang Rai in Northern Thailand. It’s best to hire a taxi or tuk-tuk to take you there, as public transportation is limited. If you’re coming from Chiang Mai, there are also buses that go directly to Chiang Rai.

Secondly, the temple is open daily from 8am to 6pm. It’s recommended to go early in the morning to avoid crowds and the hot afternoon sun.

Thirdly, there is an entrance fee of 50 baht for foreigners and 20 baht for Thai nationals. The fee helps to maintain the temple and its grounds.

When visiting the temple, it’s important to dress appropriately. As a place of worship, visitors should cover their shoulders and knees. Shoes must also be removed before entering the temple building.

Once inside, visitors will be amazed by the intricate details and stunning beauty of the White Temple. The temple is a unique blend of traditional Thai architecture and modern art, with intricate carvings and murals that depict scenes from Buddhist mythology.

Finally, it’s important to be respectful when visiting the temple. Keep noise levels low and avoid touching any of the artwork or statues. Remember that this is a place of worship for many Thai people, so be mindful of your actions and behavior.

Overall, visiting Wat Rong Khun is a must-do experience for anyone traveling to Northern Thailand. With its stunning beauty and unique blend of traditional and modern art, the White Temple is truly a sight to behold.


Visiting Wat Rong Khun, the White Temple of Chiang Rai, is a must-do activity for any traveler visiting Northern Thailand. This temple is a true masterpiece of art and architecture, and it’s an experience that you’ll never forget.

As you wander through the temple, you’ll be amazed by the intricate details and the stunning white color of the buildings. The temple is full of symbolism, and you’ll find many hidden meanings in the artwork and the decorations.

One of the most impressive features of the temple is the bridge that leads to the main building. The bridge is surrounded by a sea of hands, representing the souls of the damned reaching out for help. It’s a powerful message about the importance of doing good deeds in life.

If you’re planning a visit to Wat Rong Khun, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, be sure to dress appropriately. This is a sacred site, and visitors are expected to dress modestly. That means no shorts, tank tops, or revealing clothing. Also, be prepared for crowds. This is a popular destination, and it can get quite busy, especially during peak tourist season.

Finally, take the time to learn about the history and symbolism of the temple. There are many resources available online and at the site itself. Understanding the meaning behind the artwork and the decorations will help you appreciate the temple even more.

Overall, a visit to Wat Rong Khun is a truly unforgettable experience. It’s a chance to see one of the most beautiful and unique temples in the world, and to learn about the rich culture and history of Thailand. So if you have the opportunity to visit Chiang Rai, don’t miss out on the chance to see this incredible temple for yourself.