Friday, November 30, 2012

TOURING THAILAND: TEMPLE VISIT!

Finally I'm back in my blog. Before I proceed with my "late" post on my adventures in Thailand, let me tell you that I already moved in Australia. I will be here in Melbourne to do my PhD for the next 3 years. And with my visa, I'm allowed to stay for another 10 months after I finished my PhD. Having said that, I'll be really staying for long in this vibrant and lovely city. Seriously, I'm in awe with Melbourne's beauty. I'm not only inspired to do my research here, but I'm also excited to explore Melbourne.

Going back to my Thailand adventure, yes, this is a late post, I was in Thailand last October 25 to 28 for a 3-day Conference on Media and Communication. I presented my paper on OFW Blogging in the Conference organized by Asian Congress for Media and Communication. Well attended by scholars all over the world, the conference was held in Chulalongkorn University.

Apart from putting my heart into the conference, I also had a grand time walking around in selected temples, experiencing Bangkok's night life, shopping for souvenirs, bargaining, dining with Thai's irresistible delights, riding the tuktuk, and a lot more. So in this post, I will share to you a short chronicle of my fast yet fun-filled adventures.


I was very lucky to tour around in Thailand because of two MA students from Chulalongkorn University, namely, Que and Ricky. They're supposed to just assist me in buying a sim card in a nearby mall so I can contact my UP OU Classmate Kim when we all ended up touring Bangkok at night. So, can you imagine the places that we dared to visit?

(L-R) Me, Ricki, Que, and Res!

Our tour guide (and new-found friends) in Thailand, Ricki and Que!

I won't talk about the places that we visited at night in Bangkok. For a glimpse, we had Thai food, went for a night market, went to Silom, went to Bangkok's Red District, and a lot more (which information I prefer not to disclose as it's confidential! Chos!). Anyways, I enjoyed the night with Que, Ricky and my room mate Res.

Moving on, the last day of my stay in Bangkok was spent in a half-day city tour. Courtesy of GM holidays, the travel agent which handled my ticket and accommodation in Bangkok, I paid BHT800 for a temple tour. I was able to set foot on three jaw-dropping and culturally-rich temple. The tour guide mentioned that thousands of Temple are found in Bangkok and we visited only three.

The first temple that I visited is the Wat Sukhothai Traimit or the Temple of the Golden Buddha.

I was not only amazed with the architecture of the temple but with the design on the walls and doors as well. As I toured around, I got some close-up shots of the intricate designs on the doors. On one hand, I was delighted to see the gigantic statue of Buddha.

The Golden Buddha
 
For offering
 
Wall decor

Design on the door
The Image of the King of Thailand in the temple.

Based on research, the Sukhothai Traimit Golden Buddha is made of pure gold, measuring 12 feet 5 inches in diametre and has a height of 15 feet and 9 inches from the base to the crown and it weighs approximately 5.5 tons.

I also checked out the Reclining Buddha at Wat Phra Kaeo. Apart from being surprised with the grandeur of the reclining buddha, I also enjoyed taking snapshots of the structures, architecture and layout of stones and buddhas around Wat Phra Kaeo.



With a line-up of Buddha!
Structures around.
 

Monks in a meeting?


Last stop was the Wat Benjamabophit where the enlightenment of Buddha took place. In this temple, I fancied the windows and doors.

At Wat Benjamabophit, I also the Sal Flower, which is said to be touched by Buddha's Mom. And I also chanced upon the Englightenment tree.






The Sal Flower!

The englightement tree!
The Wat Benjamabophit is also surrounded with different Buddhas in different positions; some are seated and some are standing.What's more, artistry is reflected on the platform which hold the Buddhas.



 
Beautiful patterns

Also, I was amazed with the arch designes and texture of the doors and windows as I walked around the temple area.

Design on the door.


With these three temples that I visited, I was not only delighted to see the intricate architecture of each temples, I had the chance to immerse myself in the practices of the Buddhist in the temples. Setting aside the sea of foreigners who were all hungry to document their trips, the temples deliver solemnity and a unique deep-faith encounter even among tourists of different religion.

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