Wat Mongkol Nimit is the main Buddhist temple in Phuket Town and it’s located near the historic old town.
About Wat Mongkol Nimit
Wat Mongkol Nimit was established in 1880. The temple was formerly known as Wat Klang, which means ‘Temple of the Town’ on account of its location in the town centre. Wat Mongkol has a classic Central Thailand style shrine hall. Although not one of Thailand’s more famous temples, the gable ends of the shrine are colourfully decorated in gold and blue designs. The triple roof topped by carved wooden ornaments called chofa which are intended to represent the feathers of the mythical garuda bird.
Inside the shrine hall Wat Mongkol Nimit is the main Buddha image with smaller seated Buddha statues on either side. Visitors are free to enter the shrine hall between 08:00 to 17:30 when the temple is open, although visitors must take off their shoes and dress modestly, which means no shorts or vests which expose the shoulders.
Behind the shrine hall at Wat Mongkol Nimit is a cluster of chedi towers. These particular stupa are similar to the style of stupa you will see at Hindu temples in Katmandu in Nepal. The other major point of architectural interest at Wat Mongkol Nimit is the Sino-Portuguese style buildings at the edge of the temple where the monks live and study. The Sino-Portuguese style of architecture, which combines Asian and European design styles, was very popular in Phuket Town at the time the temple was constructed. The best known examples of Sino-Portuguese architecture in Phuket Town are its large privately owned mansions such as the Chinpracha House and the building which now how houses the famous Blue Elephant Restaurant. Unfortunately, visitors aren’t allowed inside the Sino-Portuguese style buildings at Wat Mongkol Nimit because this an active temple with many residents monks, however, there is nothing stopping visitors from looking at the exteriors of these buildings at the same time as visiting the shrine hall.
Location of Wat Mongkol Nimit
- Wat Mongkol Nimit is 31.0 km by road to the south of Phuket Airport.