Saturday, July 9, 2016
Protected by Dragons – Erich
This morning we went to Doi Suthep. Technically we went to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. Doi Suthep is a mountain and a national park in Thailand, just to the west of Chiang Mai. But on the mountain is a big and very important Buddhist Temple. "Wat" means Buddhist Temple in Thai. So the real name of the temple is Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, but everyone here just refers to the temple itself as Doi Suthep.
It's quite an amazing place. You climb this set of steps, probably close to two hundred of them. And on either side, instead of a traditional railing, you are protected by two long serpentine dragons. At the bottom of the stairs you have the dragon's heads, and out of their mouths come another dragon with five heads. (On each side of the staircase.) At the top, you have the ends of their tails.
The buildings have intricate roofs with colorful shingles and at the eaves, there are decorations, usually more serpentine dragons.
I suspect the Thai wouldn't dream of increasing prices at a site like this one. After all, it's protected by dragons.