The glorious Grand Palace in Bangkok is one of the most popular attractions in Thailand, let alone Bangkok where it is the city’s famous landmark, and consists of a number of buildings of different architectural styles that reflect the different periods during which they were constructed. This was the official residence of the kings and courts of Siam between 1782 and 1925 and later Thailand. The present King now resides at Chitralada close by, but the Grand Palace, which covers an area of over 218, 000 square metres and sits on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, is still used for official engagements and ceremonies.
Not all the buildings are open to the public, but a number of important areas that are open include the Temple of the Green Buddha –a Buddha carved in jade sitting on a throne of gold. It was first discovered in Chiang Rai in 1464. After a long history of meandering around the country, it was finally brought to its current home during the reign of King Rama I when he established the palace.
Also open to the public is the Abhisek Dusit Throne Hall, which contains the original antique throne and is also where coronations, banquets and ceremonial events take place. It also features art, handicrafts, gold and jewelry as well as some items from the Royal collection. In addition to the wonderful architecture and beautiful grounds, you will soon discover that the many mansions of the complex house other interesting items.
The Grand Palace is open daily from 8:30am until 4:30pm with last entry at 3:30pm. It should be noted that they operate a strict dress code and you should arrive dressed accordingly.