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The Giant Swing at Wat Suthat

Wat Suthat Thep Wararam - วัดสุทัศนเทพวราราม  One of Bangkok's most iconic landmarks is the Giant Swing, a towering red monument looking something like a Japanese torii gate, but serving a very different purpose. Long ago used in a royal ceremony by the kingdom's secretive royal court Brahmins, the swing today serves as a symbol of the City of Angels.

Wat Suthat Temple, the home of the Giant Swing, is a first-class temple of the royal grade, of which there are only ten in all of Bangkok.


Surrounding the temple sanctuary are twenty-eight miniature Chinese-style pagodas carved from stone. According to the Buddhist scriptures, there have been twenty-seven Buddhas before the enlightenment of Prince Siddhārtha Gautama. Each of these twenty-eight pagodas therefore correspond to one of the ancient enlightened lives of the Buddha.


While Wat Suthat itself is a beautiful and important royal temple, the Giant Swing, which soars above the temple along Bamrung Ruang Road, is the most rema…

Narayana Shrine - The God of Protection

Narayana and Garuda - the shrine of the Hindu God of Protection

Narayana

Narayana is another name for Vishnu, the Hindu god of preservation and part of the Trimutri, the holy trinity of the supreme deity in Hinduism. Vishnu is believed to deflect evil and protect the good. The shrine to Naryana stands nearby the shrine to his consort, Lakshmi.

Garuda

Garuda, the holy eagle, is a symbol of Thai monarchy. In Hindu mythology, Garuda is the vehicle of Vishnum, and the two are often depicted together.


Narayana Shrine in downtown Bangkok
Narayana Shrine in downtown Bangkok

The Narayana Shrine outside of the Hotel Intercontinental in downtown Bangkok is a symbol of protection. People walking along the streets of Bangkok's busiest shopping district often overlook the Narayana Shrine, mistaking it for a decorative fountain. Although it is a part of the Hotel Intercontinental, the Narayana Shrine isn't just decorative. In fact, it is considered to be an important and sacred shrine in downtown Bangkok.


shrine to Vishnu and Garuda
Narayana (Vishnu) and Garuda

When to visit the Narayana Shrine

  • The Narayana Shrine is located outdoors, and is open 24/7

What to do at the Jatulokbal Shrine


The shrine is always fairly quiet. Visitors leave offerings of small cups of water, flowers, incense, and fruit, and pray for protection from evil, as Narayana is believed to be a bringer of spiritual balance.

Eat, Pray, Shop - Eight Hindu Shrines at the Ratchaprasong Intersection in downtown Bangkok

The Narayana Shrine is just one of the eight Hindu shrines in the Ratchaprasong Intersection. The Thai Tourist Authority has instituted an initiative called "Eat, Pray, Shop" to encourage people to take a short pilgrimage to each of the shrines and discover the sacred hidden secret of downtown Bangkok.

Where is the Narayana Shrine?

  • The Narayana Shrine can be found outside of the Hotel Intercontinental in Bangkok, at BTS Chitlom station
  • 973 Phloen Chit Rd, Khwaeng Lumphini, Khet Pathum Wan, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10330
  • https://goo.gl/maps/mRNADGno1Gr

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