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Wat Suan Dawk

Wat Suan Dawk

Wat Suan Dawk

The area of this temple was the site of a very old temple called Wat Bupparam  King Kuna had a flower garden adjoining it. When the monk, Pra Sumana, brought the relic of Buddha from Sukotoi to Lampoon he gave it to King Kuna. Part of the relic was left in Lampoon and part was brought to Chiang Mai, King Kuna gave his flower garden to the temple, improved it, changed its name to Wat Suan Dawk (Flower Garden) and invited Pra Sumana to take up residence there in 1371. Here King Kuna enshrined one part of the sacred relic and from here the white elephant carrying the other part of the relic started his journey to Doi Sutep. The relic miraculously divided into two arts and each part became as large as the original. For many years the great sandalwood Buddha from Payao was Suan Dawk and was transferred to Wat Chet Yod.

To the left of the large Viharn and at a distance is the Bot which houses an important Buddha called Pra Chao Kao Tue. It was cate in bronze over 500 years ago. Some say it was cate when Wat Suan Dawk was set up in 1371 and others that it was cast in Chiangsan and brought to Chiang Mai. It is one of the most beautiful Buddhas in thailand and one of the largest metal images. In the country. The building, which has recently been repaired, is kept locked. It will be opened on request if the watchman is about.

During the confused centuries of fighting with Ayudhya and Burma, the Wat fell into disrepair and disuse.

In 1907 the princes of Chiang Mai decided to use part of the wide temple courtyard to enshrine the ashes of the family. Attractive Chedis were built, some in the Geylonese style. One may be identified as that of the Chao Dara Rasami, a consort of King Chulalongkhorn because it has a star on it. Dara means star. Here funeral pyres were erected and cremations took place, complete with the procession of caparisoned elephants.

In 1932 the monk Pra Sri Wichai, decided to build the Viharn, which was in great disrepair, and make it the largest in Chiang Mai. He had the assistance of a great number of donors and volunteers.