The Golden Mount | Bangkok
When you're following Google Maps and stumble upon a really cool temple on top of a hill . . .
Good morning from Bangkok! Steph and I have just seen a massive snake in the swampy bit outside our bedroom - how thrilling! So we're currently in monsoon season here in Thailand, and let me tell you: when it rains, it pours. Despite practically having to swim around the city yesterday we still managed to see quite a bit (including a brief glimpse of the Thai royals, but more of that in my newsletter. HINT: sign up below 😘).
As the heading above said, we stumbled upon the Golden Mount after following Google Maps back to the centre of Bangkok. Having been taken to a rather dubious "tourist information" centre by a tuk tuk driver and being told that the only way we could get to Chiang Mai was to book a jungle trek through them, we began the slog back to our hostel. We made a little detour to this place and were pleasantly surprised by what we saw.
I was honestly expecting a tiny hill with a bit of gold on, not a full blown temple with views across Bangkok. Wat Saket was built in the early 19th century by King Rama III. The temple sits at the top of a hill and an only be reached by walking up the 344 steps - nothing like a light bit of exercise in the unbearable humidity, right? To be fair it wasn't that bad. Plus I'm already falling hard and fast for Thai architecture.
I'm going to leave you now with a gory little bit of history about this particular temple: during one period of time it served as a crematorium for up to 60,000 plague victims. I didn't actually find this out until after and there's certainly no hint of it's slightly-less-pleasant past whilst you're there.
Well I must get a move on with my newsletter as it's about a week and a half overdue - oopsie.