Wat Kalayanamit is an elaborate Bangkok temple that sits on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. It’s located near the mouth of the Bangkok Yai Canal, although any time spent on this part of the river means you’re unlikely to miss it; the temple’s giant ochre-roofed viharn tends to stand out and demand attention.
While Kalayanamit’s viharn can be said to be traditionally Thai in architectural style, the temple’s other buildings and pavilions have a distinct Chinese influence. This is because Wat Kalayanamit was built in the first half of the 19th century when China was seen as the ideal counterbalance to the growing European influences in southeast Asia. As such, Chinese architecture, sculptures, and other decorative artefacts became increasingly popular.
Inside the huge viharn, an equally huge Buddha statue almost fills the entire prayer hall, while the walls are painted with scenes from the time of the temple's construction. Located next to the viharn, a bell tower houses the largest bronze bell in Thailand.
Due to Wat Kalayanamit’s location, the best way to reach the temple is by boat. The Chaophraya River Express goes to Ratchinee, where a cross-river ferry makes the trip to the pier located next to the temple entrance.