The Temple of Dawn, or Wat Arun as it’s known in Thai, is one of Bangkok’s most famous temples.  It sits majestically by the Chao Phraya River on the Thonburi side.  Its whole structure has been painstakingly adorned with tiny bits of coloured glass and porcelain, meaning that Wat Arun is as beautiful up close as it is from afar.  The highest prang is around 80 meters and it’s possible to climb up it – the accent is a steep one consisting of many steps.  However, it’s a worthwhile effort – once you make it to the top you are rewarded with a great view of the Chao Phraya River and beyond.

There’s a convenient shuttle boat that costs just 3 baht and takes you from the other side of the river to the entrance.  As with all temples in Thailand, it’s important to dress modestly as Wat Arun is a religious sight.  If you are dressed for the hot weather, like I was, you can hire out a shawl for a small deposit to cover exposed legs and arms.
After thoroughly exploring Wat Arun by foot, I recommend jumping on the shuttle boat back to the other side of the river, where there are a number of rooftop bars with wonderful views.  I went to Eagle Nest which is an open-air lounge located directly opposite Wat Arun, to watch the sunset over it.  I can’t recommend this enough, in fact, it was probably one of the most memorable things that I’ve done in Bangkok.
Eagle Nest is a little treasure of a bar.  The staff were warm and friendly, the atmosphere was relaxed and inviting and the music was calming.  At one end of the lounge were breathtaking views of Wat Arun and at the other, stunning views of the Grand Palace.
Eagle Nest is located at the top of the Sala Arun Hotel.  More information about its location and how to get to it can be found on its website.

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