Wat Sothon Wararam Worawihan in Chachoengsao, Thailand was built in late Ayutthaya Period, and it is claimed to be the largest Wat (Temple) in the world. The province is located on the bank of Bang Pakong River and the name “Chachoengsao” is derived from Khmer and means “deep canal”.
The temple has two separate buildings, and is usually quite crowded, as it is a popular place for Thais to visit and pray. The annual number of visitors to Wat Sothon Wararam is second only to Wat Phra Kaew – Temple of the Emerald Buddha in Bangkok. The larger part of the temple houses the sacred Buddha image called Phra Phutthasothon or Luang Pho Sothon that is one of the most worshiped Buddha images in Thailand. Folk lore has it that this Buddha image was found while floating down in the river, however, people couldn’t pull it out until they built a small shrine and had a ceremony to invite the image.
On a side note, when I first moved to Thailand I purchased a gold Buddha pendant to wear on a chain. The Buddha was a small replica of the famous Wat Sothon Image, and people would actually stop me on the street to tell me how wonderful this pendant was.
Black and White Images