sanctuary of truth
To be truthful, I didn’t like Pattaya very much. Not until I came across the ‘Sanctuary of Truth‘, the magnificent and exquisite architectural structure with traditional Khmer styling, located at Pattaya-Naklua. The sanctuary is an imposing wooden temple with intricate carvings of Hindu and Buddhist Gods and is absolutely worth a visit.
History of the Temple
The Sanctuary was conceived by the Thai businessman Lek Viriyaphan in 1981, and is scheduled to be completed in 2050.
The building is 105 meters high, and the building covers an area of around 13 hectares. The Sanctuary is made of several different types of wood and thus you will see that the Sanctuary has different textures. I was totally fascinated by the handcrafted sculptures with very fine detailing.
The idea behind the temple is that all religions lead to only one truth. It has four gopura, which represent images from the Hindu and Buddhist religions and mythologies of Cambodia, China, India and Thailand.
According to the official website, its purpose is to use art and culture as “a reflection of the Ancient Vision of Earth, Ancient Knowledge, and Eastern Philosophy. Within this complex, visitors will understand Ancient Life, Human Responsibility, Basic Thought, Cycle of living, Life Relationship with Universe and Common Goal of Life toward Utopia”.
The Sanctuary is located right next to the sea and if you look from afar, it seems as if the monument is ascending from the sea.
Apparently, no nails have been used in the construction of the temple. Isn’t that amazing for a temple with such intricate work.
Unlike the glittering temples in Thailand, this wooden temple has a different kind of subtle beauty with stunning details and I would really recommend you to go and visit it.
Watch the cultural show
I just loved the Thai dance cultural show and the sword fighting show (Time – 11;30 AM and 3:30 PM) which takes place near the Sanctuary. The dancers are elegant and their synchronised moves on the lilting music are a feast for the eyes. If you are there, don’t miss this one. And no fee for this one!
Entry to the Sanctuary is ticketed and is 500 Thai Bahts per person (roughly 17 USD) and the place is open daily from 08.00 AM -17.00 PM. You can also purchase the tickets in advance on the Sanctuary of Truth website. You can also book a trip on Klook.
How to reach the Sanctuary of Truth
You can book half day tour packages at the travel agencies in the streets of Pattaya for around 800-900 THB. Or you can choose to travel on your own.
We booked a cab for reaching theSanctuary. However while coming back, it was difficult to get one and turned out to be very expensive.
A cheaper way to travel would be to take the baht bus from South or Central Pattaya to Dolphin Roundabout (10 THB). Once you reach, cross over to the side of Nak Lua Road (next to Dusit Thani Hotel) and board another baht bus (10 THB).
Get down at Nak Lua 12 (street) and take a Motorbike Taxi which would take around 5-7 minutes to reach and costs around 50-60 THB. But this is advisable if you are travelling alone or as a couple. With kids, taxi is the best mode, even if expensive.
- You will have to wear a helmet because the temple is still under construction. The temple staff provide the same. You can remove it while taking pictures but it is advisable to wear it at all other times.
- You have to wait to enter the temple. Only a certain number of people are allowed in at one time.
- There is a strict dress code for women. You have to keep your shoulders and legs covered at all times. However, if you don’t have one, there are shops outside from where you can get a shawl or clothing to cover your legs for a returnable deposit.
- Thailand can be pretty hot at all times so it is best to visit the Sanctuary in the morning.
Have you visited the Sanctuary of Truth? What are your views about this stunning temple? Do share them in the comments section below.
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