Located in the old city of Bangkok on the banks of the Chao Phraya river, Bangkok’s gold-spired Grand Palace is definitely one of the world’s most impressive tourist attractions.
With its golden statues, glittering reflective mosaics and multi-tiered spires, the Grand Palace used to be the residence of the Kings of Thailand until the mid-20th century. Today, this architectural and spiritual marvel is the venue of many nationally significant events such as ceremonial state dinners, royal funerals, marriages, banquets and more.
The Grand Palace Complex
Surrounded by 1,900 meters long walls, the breathtakingly exquisite Grand Palace is a complex of several buildings including Wat Phra Kaew which houses the national religious treasure, the Emerald Buddha. Carved from flawless green jade and sitting in a meditation pose in an altar, the highly revered Phra Kaeo Morakot (the Emerald Buddha) is the most important icon for Thai people.
Unfortunately, some parts of the Grand Palace as the Inner Court (exclusively reserved for the King, his queen and his consorts) are completely closed off to the public.
The Grand Palace’s strict dress code
Since the Grand Palace with the Temple of the Emerald Buddha is Thailand’s most sacred site, a strict dress code is enforced. Sandals or flip-flops (you must wear socks), shorts and sleeveless shirts are not allowed for both men and women. In other words, visitors must wear long sleeves and long pants.
If by chance you arrive at the front gate improperly dressed, do not dispair as there´s a facility that offers rented clothing for proper coverage. As you can see, I was given a blouse and a sarong.
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