Wat Samphao is a one-of-a-kind temple found within the city walls of Chiang Mai; located west of the Tha Phae Gate, and was built sometime between 1260-1578, which was during the reign of the Mangrai Dynasty.
Its name refers to a gold version of a Chinese junk, which is believed to be enshrined within the temple’s chedi.
Wat Samphao Temple History, Opening Hours & Address, Chiang Mai
The pillars in the worship area are also filled with intricate details. The amazing Lanna architecture of this temple makes it worth visiting. It’s also very small, so it won’t take up much of your time. Best of all, you can also pay a small price to enjoy a traditional Thai massage here too.
If you visit the Wat Samphao, you may also come across monks. They’re very friendly, so don’t be surprised if some even come up to you, or ask if they can practice their English with you. Make the most out of your interactions with the monks but be sure to always show respect. If you have any questions about Buddhism or related topics, this could be your chance to ask.
If you visit on a Sunday, it’s a terrific time to check out the Sunday Walking Street Market. A massive concentration of the best and biggest food stalls at this market are found right next to the temple. It’s a perfect way to end a day touring about in Chiang Mai; visiting the temples and then sitting down to eat delicious and cheap cuisine.