Phra Chedi Klang Nam is a pagoda which was built during the rule of King Rama III but the idea was originally conceived by King Rama II, who wanted to build a pagoda in the middle of Chao Phraya River’s sand island. This is why it got its Thai name ‘Phra Chedi Klang Nam’ whose translation means ‘pagoda in the middle of the river’; it is also known as Phra Samut Chedi.
Past & Present…
Under King Rama III’s supervision the pagoda‘s construction started on 30th October, 1827 and was ready within 7 months. The pagoda which was initially constructed was 20 meters in height and its shape was unlike its present the bell-like appearance; the place initially had Buddha relics that were later stolen. The present pagoda was reconstructed by King Rama IV, not only the height was increased to 39 meters but also the shape was changed. He also made sure that twelve Buddha relics were transported from Grand Palace to the pagoda. Till middle 20th century, pagoda used to be surrounded by water on all sides such that the only way to reach the pagoda was through boats, but at present this is not the case; the river is absent.
Phra Chedi Klang Nam has retained its status of ‘Symbol of province’ for centuries now- centuries back when first foreigners arrived here from Bangkok it was the first thing that they saw; also, it is also the only temple in Thailand which has the longest running fair. The fair is held every year for a period of 12 days and nights and as per the sources the fair was in its 188th year in 2015. Many ancient traditions are still followed at the annual fair; for instance- the wrapping of sacred cloth among other common occurrences like puppet shows etc. Bowin is surrounded by pretty attractions and also comprises large number of fests, fairs and festivals. By renting a car at Bowin Downtown, it becomes more feasible to easily cover every nook and corner of the town. So, rent a car and start exploring this district in your way and at your ease.