Top 4 most spectacular palaces to visit in Thailand
Thailand’s Royal family, part of the Chakri Dynasty that was founded in 1782, have an astounding 19 royal palaces around the country. The palaces are stunning pieces of architecture, and their beauty attracts thousands of tourists every year. Here are the top 4 palaces you can visit.
Situated in Bangkok, on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, the Grand Palace was home to the rulers of Siam. It’s still used for official events, ceremonies and is a tourist hotspot. The huge palace has many different buildings – it spans 218,400 square metres. You’ll be able to walk around the complex and see two of the lavish throne halls on weekdays.
Bang Pa-In Royal Palace
This palace is also situated in Bangkok, and has a mysterious history. Built in 1632, by King Prasat Thong, the palace was laid to ruin after the Burmese raids of 1767, and revived by King Mongkut from 1851, where it then began to flourish once more. The architecture after its revival was very influenced by Chinese and French styles, and it features Versaillesque gardens that are wonderful to see first-hand. It was traditionally use by the royal family as a place to view the night sky, and read poetry in pavilion set in the centre of the exquisite ornamental pond.
Hailed as the largest building made entirely of golden teakwood, the three storey Vimanmek Mansion is a fantastic tourist spot. It is home to beautiful interiors, antique memorabilia, and maintains an air of a place lost in time. There, you’ll be able to view HM Queen Sirikit’s incredible collection of art and artefacts from local artisans.
Located in the mountains of Chiang Mai close to the Buddhist temple, Doi Suthep, this palace is the winter residence for the royal family and is open to the public when the family aren’t around. The gardens are home to many species of orchid and a spectacularly well maintained rose garden called Suan Suwaree. Walking the paths of the gardens is highly recommended for stunning views.
Some of the royal palaces of Thailand are out of bounds to the public, like Chitralada Royal Villa, but with so many palaces to see, you won’t be disappointed with the awe-inspiring opulence and beauty of the ones open to the public.