Catagorize: Temple, Landmarks and Memorials
Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan, which is called Wat Phra That by people in Nakhon Si Thammarat, is a sacred archeological site and an idol esteemed by people in Nakhon Si Thammarat and other Buddhists. The well-known symbol of Nakhon Si Thammarat Province is Phra Borom That Chedi, which is situated inside Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan, since it is the place where the Buddha’s relics are kept. At present, the Department of Fine Arts has announced the registration of Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan as an archeological site. It is regarded as one of the most important sacred places in the south of Thailand.
Phra Borom That Chedi is architecture in Lanna style. Its prominent point is the top of the stupa which is coated with real gold. It is believed that the Phra That are made of the gold ornaments and many valuable things including the tip of the stupa. These valuable things were brought by the Buddhists to the Lord Buddha so that they can go to nirvana. According to the provincial slogan “A historical town, the golden Phra That, plentiful minerals, three-metal nielloware, numerous temples, abundant shellfish,” the word “the golden Phra That” means the golden top of Phra Borom That. For those who wish to see the glittering golden top of Phra That closely, there is a binocular service provided. The price is agreed between the sellers and the customers, depending on how long the customers use the binoculars to admire the beauty of the stupa. Phra Borom That Chedi’s fame and sacredness has attracted people from all direction to pay homage and to wish for blessing.
There is also another ceremony which is done together with worshipping. That is to carry the cloth to the stupa. Legend has it that anyone who carry the cloth to the stupa and wish for anything, including recovering from illness, having children, or succeeding in work or study, will have their wishes fulfilled. It is said that there was a man who got an accident and could not walk. No matter how doctors treated him, he still could not walk. At last, his parents did not know what to do; therefore, they wished and carried the cloth to Phra Borom That. They wished their son would recover from the illness and, in return, their son would be ordained at Wat Phra That. It did not take a long time as that man gradually recovered until he could walk normally. On Maka Bucha Day and Visakha Bucha Day every year, there is a tradition of Hae Phra Kuen That. This is a religious ceremony that people from everywhere come to make their great merit. The other miracle of Phra Borom That is that it never casts the shadow on the floor, no matter which directions the sunlight reflects. There is still no answer to the reason why this happens. This miracle makes the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) rank this stupa as one of the Unseen Thailand places.
Apart from Phra Borom That, a number of small stupas surrounded it also seem strange for the visitors. These stupas are called Chedi Boriwan. There are totally 149 of them which were successively and continuously built by the descendants to contain the relics of their dead family members. They will wish for their family members to reborn as Buddhists in the next lives. Aside from the miracle of Phra That with no shadow, Chedi Boriwan that surrounds Phra Borom That is also another wonder which has never be seen before.
Direction to Wat Phra That
1.By private car
From the route number 401, at the city center of Nakhon Si Thammarat Province, go to Ratchadamnoen Road. At Nai Mueang Sub-district, Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan will stand dominantly on the right side.
2.By public bus
From the city center of Nakhon Si Thammarat Province, take the bus on Sanamkila- Hua Thanon route (Mazda bus). The fare costs 10 baht. The bus will stop at the front of Wat Phra That. The tourists can also take the motorcycle for 20-50 baht, depending on the distance.