The Sanctuary of Truth in Pattaya, Thailand is a truly wonderful way to spend at least one of your days out while you are on vacation. The giant masterpiece is all hand crafted from wood. It has taken the artisans (mostly artists from Myanmar) more than two decades to bring the sanctuary this far, but there is still a long way to go before it will be considered completed.
The overall building is approximated to take roughly 40 years to complete. The brainchild of a successful Thai businessman has hints and touches of aspects from many different cultures in the area to include Thai, Buddhist, Khmer, Chinese and Hindu.
Visitors to the Sanctuary will find all manner of activities in which to participate from fish and elephant feeding and photos to a restaurant, show and guided tour of the sanctuary if you wish it (you should always tip your tour guides if you select this option).
The intricate details in the carvings and the way the sun falls during certain times of the day makes this a low light photographer’s dream. It is a great place to practice any manner of photography from landscapes and seascapes to animals and portraits. Make sure you stop at the top of the stairs to take a photo of the structure from the hillside.
In the center of the structure are artifacts from Buddha. It is important to remember to remove your shoes before approaching the cases so not to disrespect anybody.
Be cautious when inside of the structure, the workers are constantly roping off and changing different areas in an attempt to finish the project. Unfortunately for them, there have been times where tourists were not so respectful and they have to go back to maintain a certain part of the sanctuary that may have been broken by accident.
Visitors should set aside a period of about 3 to 4 hours to truly be able to take in everything that The Sanctuary of Truth has to offer. Tickets are 500 Thai Baht (about $14.00 US) each for entry into the facility. Before you depart to have a look, it is also recommended that you check show times on The Sanctuary of Truth webpage (HERE). This is to ensure any delays to your day by having to wait. Tickets can also be purchased in advance at the website.
The Sanctuary of Truth is located in Naklua, at the North end of Pattaya. Just ask any baht bus driver or motorcycle taxi to take you to The Sanctuary of Truth. They will know where to drop you off. If you have the time or are looking for something to fill a gap in your day, the trip is well worth the 500 baht entrance fee.
If you came to Thailand for some kind of spiritual awakening or not, on entering this place, you cannot help but feel that there is some kind of power there. A must visit at least one time.