Even though the Grand Palace is around the corner of Wat Pho, so to speak, we visited this sight on another day.
The Grand Palace was the residence of kings in Bangkok for almost 200 years, until in the middle of the 20th century it was decided to move to another residence.
The Grand Palace: the entrance fee
We visited the Grand Palace outside the high season. Admission for adults is currently 500 TB. Children must pay from 120 cm. Our child was 2 cm over, but once again we got the cuteness bonus and didn’t have to pay for Sveeja.
We want to learn more about the history and culture of Bangkok and Thailand, so we rented an audio guide for 200 TB per person, which was available in many languages, including German. You can also book a guide; the price is negotiated by yourself. But since we all want to discover the terrain for ourselves, the Audio Guide was the better choice for us. My passport was required as a deposit, I did not have it with me, my identity card was fortunately also sufficient.
The Grand Palace: the dress code
There is a strict dress code for the palace. The knees and shoulders should be covered. We put on all the long pants. On a day when it was supposed to get 40 degrees. We are dressed “modestly” and our entrance is therefore without complications. For short pants or skirts, a woman can simply wrap herself in a cloth. Tourists can borrow clothes for a deposit.
The Grand Palace consists of four parts, the Outer Courtyard, the Central Courtyard, the Inner Courtyard and the Wat Phra Kaeo. Wat Phra Kaeo is the temple of the Emerald Buddha. This emerald Buddha is very sacred to Buddhists. That is why Buddhist Chinese tourists are flooding the Grand Palace.
And the groups are loud, very loud. Everyone takes photos and selfies in every pose imaginable. Our child looked closer at a gatekeeper and was pushed aside very unfriendly because she ruined the motive.
The tour guide of each group calls together his “sheep”. A mother screams for her daughter, who also has to take the 100th photo. Of course, there is also screaming and palavering when it comes to the right pose. It’s an incredible soundscape.
Something’s missing. Yeah, that’s right. Only a few are interested in the history and architecture of the complex. That’s how it looks to us.
architecture of the buildings is very beautiful, elaborately built and richly decorated. Our child looks very interestedly at the tapestries with the story of Rama I. A continuous representation with gods, spirits and humans. Except for the temple of the emerald Buddha (the Buddha is made of jade), we could not look at any building from the inside. That disappointed me personally. Perhaps some accessible buildings have remained hidden from us. The rental time of 2 hours of the Audio Guide is, in my opinion, sufficient to have a look at the main sights.
The Grand Palace: opening hours
The opening hours for the Grand Palace are from 8.30 to 16.00. Basically the palace is open every day. We wanted to anticipate the great rush and the heat and arrived on time. On this day the entrance was only granted until 12.00 o’clock in the large palace and until 13.00 o’clock all tourists had to leave the area. The reason was a ceremony during the reopening of a building on the site.
We have a chat with the security after we have returned our audio guides. And try to escape the midday heat.