The White Temple’s history

The White Temple started construction in 1997 by a great architect - Chalermchai Kositpipat. It can be seen that this temple was only built nearly three decades ago, so the temple only has a few historical values. However, you shouldn't underestimate Wat Rong Khun because it is one of the most recognizable temples in Thailand. The idea of ​​whitening the entire structure came from Chalermchai’s desire to build an all-white temple that symbolizes the purity of the Buddha.

Wat Rong Khun - white temple thailand

Until now, this architectural work has not been completed because the architect wants to create a complex of 9 main works including a main hall, a meditation hall, a relic storage room, an art gallery, a chapel, and the monks' living quarters. Creating such a large population requires him to work extremely hard for 60 - 90 years to complete it all. Therefore, he allowed his five best students to help him so that he could complete the temple in time before he left the world.

The highlight of Wat Rong Khun 

Although the temple is still under construction, it attracts tourists because of its architecture. Every year, lots of people visit Thailand's White Temple, making this place the most visited attraction in Chiang Rai. This temple has a restricted area of approximately 12,000m2, yet as you enter the region of the white temple, you will be amazed by the view as if a heavy snowfall had just passed.

Wat Rong Khun thailand - white temple thailand

The white pagoda is the crystallization of classical architecture with a surrealist style.  There will be a park, aquarium, and beautiful sculptures in pure white around the temple. All the decorative details in the temple or even the statues are meticulously sculpted to every little detail. It could be a demon, skull, or monster in Thai folklore.

The "reincarnation - rebirth" bridge 

Coming to the white temple without check-in in the "reincarnation - rebirth" bridge through the "miniature hell" is a pity.  Under the bridge, many hands are rising as if waiting for those who cross to pull down below the bridge. These hands will represent the lustful desires of a man in the endless pit. The bridge is the embodiment of rebirth which means the desire to bring people beyond the trivial and lead people to the happiest things. So that’s why you will come to the "gate of heaven” after going through this bridge.

The reincarnation rebirth bridge thailand

Heaven's Gate 

Heaven’s Gate (Time Gate) is where the Reincarnation Circle Bridge is connected. In front of the gate of heaven are two tall and majestic guardians protecting the main hall inside. They are called Rahu and Death. These two sculptures are built artfully, symbolizing "peace" and "death." It further implies that people ultimately come to the land of "extreme bliss" if they live well, have confidence in good things, and avoid unfavorable things.

Heaven's Gate thailand - white temple thailand


Ubosot is known as Thailand's most notable artwork of the white temple. Visitors will not be able to overlook this piece of art because it is so well-designed. The panes of glass are in a dazzling white tint on the background of plaster statues. When there is light flowing in through such a design, it adds a lot of sparkle to this space.


The distinctive three-story tile roof, as well as the depiction of the snake god Naga on the wide handrail, create a special highlight for this project. Furthermore, this place showcases a large number of Buddha statues and oil paintings, allowing visitors to observe the line between good and evil that exists side by side.

Golden Palace

Surely you will be surprised to know that inside the White Pagoda complex, there is a golden palace with extremely prominent iridescent colors. This architectural work has contributed to creating a highlight in the overall picture of the White Temple. The golden palace was constructed to represent if people achieve success in any field, the desire for money will come to them instead of just wanting it trivially.

golden palace thailand

In addition, in the White Temple, there is a lucky tree for visitors to tie lucky charms to the tree. Next to the tree, there will be a "well of wishes" where you can throw coins to pray for smooth sailing.

For a comprehensive look, don't miss our post on Thailand travel guide!

How to get to the White Temple 

  • Location: Off Highway 1 (Phahonyothin road) - 15 kilometers South West of Chiang Rai town

  • Opening hour: Every day from 8 AM until 5 PM.



  • Thai nationals

  • Diplomats

  • Monks

  • Disabled people

  • Tour leaders with ID

  • Children 120cm in height and shorter


Everyone else who does not belong to the above kind of people

Pay 100 THB -  only for the main building (all other venues don’t have an entrance fee)


The White Temple of Thailand is about 13km from the city center. Foreign tourists can choose to travel by taxi to this place which is both convenient and comfortable. Traveling from the city center only takes about 20 minutes. The price ranges from 250 - 300 Baht. You can book a taxi at almost any hotel in the Chiang Rai region.

In addition, if you want to save on transportation costs, you can travel by public transport. Buses depart from the old bus station near the night market in the center of Chiang Rai town. The average time it takes you to travel is 30 minutes. The bus fare is 20 Baht for one way.

The best time to visit the White Temple 

You should come to Thailand from November to February because this is the festival of the year in Thailand. An attractive option for tourists is coming to Thailand in summer and viewing the temple reflected in the beautiful sunlight.

In a day you can visit Wat Rong Khun at any time because its beauty at sunset or sunrise also highlights the magnificent coat of this temple.

best time to visit white temple thailand

Things to keep in mind when visiting the White Temple

  • Please dress politely.

  • Take off your shoes when entering the building.

  • In the main building, you are not allowed to take photos.

  • Do not point your feet to the image of the Buddha.

  • You should combine sightseeing with famous attractions of Chiang Rai like Karen long neck village, Black House, or the famous golden triangle area.

Visiting the white temple of Thailand will give you the experience of admiring a masterpiece built with elaborate investment and meticulousness. Quickly add Thai White Temple to your list of must-go places. I hope you have an exciting tour to Thailand!