Chiang Mai: Wat Ket Karam for Travel Photo Thursday

Posted by on Jan 22, 2015 in Chiang Mai, Destinations, Thailand, Travel Photo Thursday | 41 comments

Wat Ket Karam

Wat Ket Karam is one of over 300 temples you’ll find in and around Chiang Mai. I have not made it my life mission to visit everyone, but I do enjoy a quiet wander through those that cross my path. This Travel Photo Thursday (our 211th) come with me to Chiang Mai’s Wat Ket Karam. Located across the Ping River, it’s a little off the beaten path, but not by much. In reality, it’s only a short walk once you cross either of the downtown bridges.

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Upon entering the quiet grounds, it’s hard to believe that the temple boasts a history of almost 600 years. Both the buildings and the compound have been lovingly restored and maintained over the years.


Wat Ket Karam

Wat Ket Karam

I have no idea the purpose of these 12 baskets with the colorful handles.


Wat Ket Karam


However, I did peek inside… (still no idea!)


Wat Ket Karam


The garden area in front of the monks quarters is lovely. You can see at the end there’s a large ornate mirror. That’s me in the mirror! Also, the chair seems to be for the monks to sit (perhaps the Abbot), and surrounded by dog figurines. Why the dogs? You’ll find out soon! 🙂


Wat Ket Karam


These monks were having great fun primping in front of the mirror, and then taking photos of each other. (How times have changed!)


Monks at Wat Ket Karam


So, why all the dogs? Well, this temple is dedicated to people who are born in the “Year of the Dog,” and it is often referred to as the “Dog Temple.”


Wat Ket Karam


There are even lots of real dogs living here, and they all look happy, and well looked after.


Wat Ket Karam


Many of the temple buildings are protected by beautiful dragons (or Naga).


Wat Ket Karam


These golden nagas decorate the temple rooftop.


Wat Ket Karam


In days gone by they would have been made of wood. This wooden Naga is now attached to the front of the temple’s museum. Not as colorful, but it has its own unique charm. The museum has an excellent collection of artifacts. The collection of old Chiang Mai photos and textiles caught my interest. The beautiful collection of photos takes visitors back to a very different time.


Wat Ket Karam ... Historic Roof Dragons


You’ll find beautiful statues everywhere.


Wat Ket Karam


And, of course, it’s flower time in Chiang Mai, and these beautiful orchids are one of my favorites.


Orchids at Wat Ket Karam



One last shot of the beautiful roof line.


Wat Ket Karam



Travelers Tip

Temples in Chiang Mai are open daily from 6 am to 6 pm. Admission to Wat Ket Karam, including the museum, is free. Be sure to dress appropriately. That means no sleeveless shirts or shorts/pants/skirts above the knee. Think modest! 


Wat Ket Karam, Chiang Mai, Thailand

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  1. truly beautiful. I love these temples – so quiet and peaceful. Thank you for giving us a peak inside. and oh the colour of that orchid – gorgeous. Happy travels.

    • Hi Jill! The flowers around Chiang Mai are beautiful this time of year. I am always awed when I see orchids growing just about anywhere.

  2. What a beautiful temple! I think the temples are what I liked best about Thailand – it seemed they were everywhere and everyone was absolutely gorgeous. Nothing as beautiful from me this week, but you know how I like spotting the odd things in the world around me! Have a good week.

    • Hi Cindy. I never get tired of roaming through temples. There is always beauty to be found. I loved your shot of the semi!

  3. Many interesting statues and beautiful architecture.

    • Hi Lilli. This is one of my favorite temples in the city.

  4. I like that you find the less touristy temples in Chiang Mai. I was born in the Year of the Dog, so this temple must be for me (and all the other dog people out there)! It’s so interesting that you captured the monks primping in the mirror. In many ways, I guess they’re just like regular folks.

    • Hi Michele. When you come back to CM you’ll have to visit 🙂 Monks are not as closed off as they used to be. Also, many of them are only monks for a very short time, so it seems that they don’t embrace all of the “expected” behaviors of monks. 🙂

  5. This seem to be a wonderful place! Great pictures! The dragon statue is beautiful! Thank you for sharing and hosting!

    • Hi! My pleasure. The dragon shot is one of my favorites.

  6. Nancie, I did not know how many temples are in Chiang Mai, but I knew it was a lot. You can spend your whole time templing! Thai temples are so ornate and pretty as well as peaceful! I love your photos!

    • Hi Corrine! Thanks so much. Just think, if you lived here for a year you could visit a different temple every day! 🙂

  7. I love the basket handles and monk photos and have always loved Thai temple roofs, thanks for taking me on a tour around this lovely doggie Wat.

    • Hi Phoebe, and I am so pleased that you enjoyed the tour. I agree, Thai temple roofs are very special.

  8. So beautiful! I am excited as we will be in Bangkok for a few days before we fly to Siem Reap for a Mekong river cruise.

    • Hi Jackie. Enjoy Bangkok! I can’t wait to hear about your Mekong River cruise.

  9. Being a dog lover, I would love to visit this temple. So many cute statues of dogs! It cracked me up seeing the monks primping themselves in the mirror. Who would have thought? Temples are such special places.

    • Hi Kathy! This temple is full of dog images and the real thing. I’m sure you would love wandering around here.

  10. Wow, the architecture is so amazing! The statues are quite lovely. Thanks for the info, too.

    • Hi Bettyl. Yes, the temple architecture here is lovely.

    • Hi Bettyl! Yes, the temple architecture here is special!

  11. Okay, I love the dogs as well. And the photos, Nancie, they are just outstanding. You’ve caught the magic of the temples!

    • Hi Jackie! Thank you so much. This really is a wonderful little temple, and so photogenic.

  12. Great idea to add the “traveler’s tip” about the dress code. It’s easy to forget to dress modestly if the weather is warm.

    And thank you for hosting Travel Photo Thursday!


    • Hi Steve. My pleasure and welcome! Yes, the dress code is important. A lot of people don’t follow it, but I think it’s important to be respectful, and the monks appreciate visitors who dress appropriately.

  13. Wonderful! it brings back so many memories of when I visited Chiang Mai. As a matter of fact, I visited some of the temples you highlighted here.

    • Hi Ruth. I always love reading about places I have been on other blogs. It’s like reliving the experience!

  14. Great photos, especially of the monks primping. Their quarters and garden look lovely.

    • Hi Shelley! Those are some of the nicest monk quarters I have seen in Chiang Mai. They look rather luxurious!

  15. Beautiful. The architecture and sculptures are stunning. With some many temples in Chiang Mai, how do you choose which ones to visit?

    • Hi Donna. Quite often I just end up walking in on a whim. If I hear the monks chanting, I almost always go in and have a look. When it’s busy in CM ducking into a temple that I’m passing by is a great way to get away from the crowds.

  16. So is there a temple for people born in the year of the horse? I’d want to visit. 🙂 Beautiful place and your photo of the orchids is exquisite.

    • Hi Cathy. I’m not sure if there is or not. However, I live about a ten minute walk from a temple with some gorgeous horse statues outside. The next time I go by I will have a look.

  17. What a pretty temple. Love that it was a Year of the Dog temple and has adopted the dog theme.

    We’ve not had the opportunity to visit Thailand yet (unless the airport counts). I’ve heard good things about Chiang Mai and it sounds like there are a lot more things to see than most people know.

  18. They are beautiful Nagas Nancie. I love watching Monks. When we were in Luang Prabang in a small temple there were some monks arranging the temples objects and posing for photographs with them. They were on holidays 🙂

  19. Another great group of temple photos Nancie!

    • Thanks for linking up with #wkendtravelinspiration!

  20. Every time I read one of your posts and see your magnificent photos I am so inspired to visit this amazing area. Chiang Mai may receive its share of visitors but the superlatives used to describe it are well deserved. Absolutely gorgeous! I can’t wait to see it for myself!

  21. I very much enjoyed visiting the wats in Chiang Mai. My own favorite photo is this one re. a Monk Chat,

  22. Great post. The architecture is breathtaking. The colors, the statues, wow, just amazing.

  23. Love the photos and the wats in Chiang Mai are amazing


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