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I'm just one ordinary Tarlaqueno who loves to travel and travel and travel and revel in God's wonderful creation. Through this blog, I get to share my travel experiences with everyone.

Grand Day Tour at the Grand Palace


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
 Phra Thinang Chakri Maha Prasat

If you are traveling in Thailand for the first time, your Bangkok trip wouldn't be complete without a grand day tour at the Grand Palace. Considered the most visited landmark in Bangkok, the Grand Palace sits at the heart of the city near the Chao Phraya river and is home to many important structures and royal occasions.


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Passing by the Democracy monument on the way to the Grand Palace

I won't talk much about the history of the Grand Palace because I know nothing much and it just might bore you anyway. But in any case  I will be mentioning some important information just for you to have a brief background about the landmark.


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Entrance to the Grand Palace

At first I thought that the Grand Palace is literally a single palace where the present royal family lives. Talk about narrow-mindedness. Haha. It turned out that the Grand Palace is actually a giant rectangular complex that consists of royal offices, ministry departments, residential buildings, a temple, some religious structures, gardens and museums. All in all the Grand Palace covers an area of 218,000 square meters. That means you gotta prepare for some long distance walking under the sun's consuming heat. So I suggest you visit the place at the earliest possible time for you to finish before the sun is at its hottest.

  
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
The place can get so crowded during weekends
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
The Temple of the Emerald Buddha as seen from the Outer Court
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Posing under the midday sun. Thanks Ma'am Lea for the photo

The Grand Palace was built in 1782 to serve as the official residence of the King Rama I after moving the capital from Thonburi to Bangkok. The first structures that were built were the Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall and the Phra Maha Monthian. For almost 150 years, the Grand Palace fulfilled its purpose alongside housing all government offices. Throughout this period more and more structures were built and added, turning the place into one spectacular complex showing Thai artistry and creativity. In 1925 the reigning king and his family moved out of the Grand Palace and when absolute monarchy was put to an end in 1932, all the offices moved out of the complex. At present, the Grand Palace still houses some key government offices and is a venue for several royal events.


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
The long, long ticket

The Grand Palace is divided into four main courts: the Outer Court, Central Court, Inner Court (restricted area) and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. Upon entering the outer court, you can already get a glimpse of what's inside the complex. In this area no entrance fees are being charged yet. The outer court is also where a lot of tour guides and interpreters offer their services to tourists who have not availed of any tour packages. You can also rent an English audio guide here for a few hundred bucks if you don't want a human guide beside you. 


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Detailed ceiling
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Amazing structures indeed!
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Thotsakhirithon, a demon guarding an exit
 
Walking further inside the complex you will reach the ticket booth. At present, tickets are sold at 400 baht each. A bit pricey because the ticket does not only include entrance to the palace complex, but also to other museums and attractions within and outside the complex. Smart move for the government since you have no choice but to pay for all the entrance fees of the landmarks you're not interested to visit. On the viewpoint of visitors, that strategy can both be good and bad. It can be good in the sense that you will be forced to visit all the other landmarks to get your money's worth which may, in the end, give you additional knowledge and unexpected enjoyment perhaps. On the other hand, you'll end up paying more than what you should spend and you are at a disadvantage especially if you have no more time to visit the other landmarks. In any case, the complimentary passes to the other attractions can be used up to a week after the ticket has been purchased. 


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Chedis
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Phra Siratana Chedi

Upon purchase of your ticket, you will first be led to the Royal Monastery of the Emerald Buddha. This is where the sacred emerald image housed in a gilded-carved wooden throne (Busabok)can be found. The temple complex is surrounded by walls separating it from the other areas in the palace complex. A lot of other structures can be found inside the temple complex, all of which serve different purposes. You will also notice that the architecture of the structures differ from one another since they were built at different times, hence, at different reigns.


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Golden mosaic tiles carefully set in place
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Demons or yakshas

The emerald buddha is actually made from a block of green jade. When it was discovered in 1434, the abbot initially thought that the stone was emerald that is why it was called an emerald buddha. It was actually taken to Laos and remained there for some 200 years before King Rama I brought it back to Thailand after invading Vientiane.


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Scale model of the Angkor Wat found in the Upper Terrace
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Glass details
  Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace

The ordination hall is where the emerald buddha is placed. Upon entering the hall, visitors shall remove their footwear. It is prohibited to point one's toes on the sacred image. Cameras are also not allowed inside the hall. We saw a security officer confiscate a visitor's camera and deleted the pictures containing the emerald buddha before returning the camera to the owner.


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Phra Wiharn Yod containing a number of Buddha images
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace

Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace

Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
The half-bird, half-man creature known as Kinnon
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Demons supporting a chedi

What's amazing about the royal monastery is the intricacy of the details incorporated in every structure. I can imagine how creative and at the same time patient, hardworking and dedicated the Thais were during the times these structures were built. You will get to appreciate the structures more when you come up close and you'll be surprised that the stupa you thought was painted was actually fully embellished with mosaic and glass tiles. The walls which appear to be decorated with wall adhesives actually feature hand-painted images showcasing Thai history and culture. 


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
 
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
The Temple of the Emerald Buddha and the Royal Pantheon side by side
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Aren't they tired? They've been holding the chedi for more than 300 years now!
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Ordination hall of the Royal Monastery
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Prayer time
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Lonely lotus
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
A visitor performing a Buddhist practice
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace

Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Mural paintings amazingly done by hand, depicting the story of Rama and Sita

After touring the Emerald Buddha Complex, we headed to the Center Court. This is where a number of magnificent buildings are located. These structures served as the royal family's residence, venues for royal gatherings, reception of foreign ambassadors, and state banquets. 


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Towering chedis and complicatedly designed roofs
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace

Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Even physical disability can't hinder one from visiting the place
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Harap sa kaliwa, na! Cadets marching along Amornvithi Road
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Come, i'll give you a big hug. lol. The Chakri Maha Prasat Hall at the background
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Dusit Maha Prasat Hall. Intended to be used for lying-in-state ceremonies

Our last stop in the Grand Palace complex was the Queen Sirikit Museum of Textiles. Formerly the building of the Ministry of Finance, the structure was transformed into a state-of-the-art museum in 2003. The museum's goal is to collect, display and preserve textiles from Southeast, South, and East Asia. You will also find the dresses worn by Her Majesty Queen Sirikit during King Bhumibol's state visit in the US in the 1960's inside the museum. The museum has lots of interesting stuff inside, though picture taking is prohibited. Entrance fee to the museum is already included in the 400 baht Grand Palace ticket, but if one wishes to visit the museum alone, 150 baht will be collected per adult, 80 baht per senior citizen, and 50 baht per student or teenager. Children below 12 are free.


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Wat Phra Keo Museum
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
the elegant Queen Sirikit Musuem of Textiles
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace

Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace
Complimentary tickets
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Grand Palace

Before catching our flight back to the Philippines, our group visited the Vimanmek Mansion. We were supposed to skip this but since it came with our tickets, we decided to pay a visit. You have to ride a taxi to reach the mansion. Taxi fare from the Grand Palace would cost just around 60 baht by the meter, but drivers would sometimes negotiate since they can easily determine whether you are a tourist or not. 


Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Vimanmek Mansion
On the way to Vimanmek Mansion
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Vimanmek Mansion

We were actually intrigued by Vimanmek Mansion's status of being the world's largest golden teakwood mansion but were disappointed to find out that there were a lot of restrictions in the place. To think that it is not a temple or a sacred place, the restrictions were just too much. Dress codes were imposed. Shoes were not allowed inside the mansion. Bags and electronic devices, including cameras and mobile phones, were required to be placed in pay lockers. But what can be found inside? Well, the mansion looked like any other old-house-turned-museum here in the Philippines, only larger. We didn't stay long here as we had to go back to the hotel to get our bags. 



Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Vimanmek Mansion
   
Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Vimanmek Mansion

Tarlaqueno Traveler Bangkok Vimanmek Mansion

I must say that you should reserve an entire day if you are planning to visit the Grand Palace. With all the complimentary entrance to other attractions and museums, plus the proximity of other famous temples, your itinerary will surely eat up a day.

HOW TO GET TO THE GRAND PALACE:
The Grand Palace can be conveniently reached by taxi. From the Petchburi or Pratunam area, fare is only around 90 baht (126 pesos). On days with heavy traffic, the driver may ask an additional amount. 


HOW TO GET TO THE VIMANMEK MANSION:
Although entrance to the Vimanmek Mansion is included in the Grand Palace ticket, they are not located in the same area. You have to ride another taxi going to the mansion. Fare is about 60 baht (84 pesos). 


FEES:
A ticket to the Grand Palace costs 400 baht (560 pesos) and includes entrance to the following:
1. Temple of the Emerald Buddha
2. Queen Sirikit Textile Museum (Operating hours 9AM - 4:30PM)
3. Royal Thai Decorations and Coins Pavilion
4. Wat Phra Keo Museum
5. Abhisek Dusit Throne Hall
6. Sanam Chandra Palace (Operating hours 9:30AM - 4PM)
7. Arts of the Kingdom Exhibition (Exhibit hours 10AM - 6PM)
8. Vimanmek Mansion (Operating hours 9:30AM - 3:15PM)

The Grand Palace is open daily from 8:30AM - 3:30PM except on special holidays and royal occasions.
*The ticket is valid for 7 days in attractions 5-8 above.

RULES TO FOLLOW:
The Grand Palace and the  Vimanmek Mansion have rules regarding attire. To avoid any inconvenience, dress appropriately. Wear shirts with sleeves, long pants or below-the-knee skirts. Remove footwear wherever required. Cameras and other electronic devices are also prohibited in some locations. 

10 comments:

  1. thank you
    Welcome to Thailand

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    ReplyDelete
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  3. بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
    شركة وادى الرياض تقدم بعض اعماله لكى الكل يعرف شركاتنا واننا نعمل من اجل العمل الرائع الذى يصعب على اى شركة اخرة ونبداء بشركة
    شركة تنظيف بجازان
    شركة تنظيف بجازان من المناطق الصعبة وذاتة حرارة كبيرة جدا ويصعب على اى شركة تبقى فهذا المكان الحار الصعب غير شركة وادى الرياض
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بجازان
    وكذالك شركة المكافحة اصعب من التنظيف لان المكافحة تحتاج الى المبيدات الازمة ولذالك نستورد المبيدات اللزمة فى رش المبيدات والتى تعمل فى صمت حفاظا على ارواح البشر وخاصة على الاطفال عزيزى العميل انتا فى ايد امنة فلا تشغل بالك ابدا
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بخميس مشيط
    مكافحة الحشرات فى خميس مشيط الامر الهام الذى يعنبروة العميل صعبا ولاكن مع شركة وادى الرياض تجد كل شىء سهل فلا تعتل اى هم لذالك من المكافحة او رش المبيدات
    شركة تسليك مجارى بالدمام
    شركة تسليك مجارى من افضل الشركات حتى هذة اللحظة الحاسمة والتى يعرف عن صعوبة هذا الامر فى مجال التسليك لذالك شركاتنا تنفذ اكبر عمليات التسليك حتى الان
    شركة تسليك مجارى بالرياض
    افضل شركة تسليك مجارى بالدمام
    شركة تنظيف نجران
    شركة تنظيف بابها
    شركة رش مبيدات بجدة
    شركة تنظيف منازل بجدة
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بمكة
    شركة رش مبيدات بمكة
    اننا شركة وادى الرياض نعمل من اجل العميل ولدينا مهارات عالية وعمالة خاصة من او على اعلى مستوى تتخيلة فلا تشغل بالك مهما كان الشىء الذى تطلبة من شركاتنا سواء تنظيف بيتك ولدينا كذا طريقة لنوصل للانتا تريدة وسوفا تكون راضى عن شركة وادى الرياض

    ReplyDelete

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