Wat Phra That Hariphunchai, Lamphun Province
Year of the Rooster: Lamphun is a small town about 28 kms southeast of Chiang Mai. One of the highlights of the town is this stunning chedi at Wat Phra That Haripunchai. Does it look familiar to you? You may recognize some of the features in the above picture if you have ever been to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep in Chiang Mai. That temple was in fact based on this one in Lamphun. The 46 metre high chedi, which contains a hair of the Lord Buddha, dates back to the 9th Century. According to legend, the Buddha once visited the town near here on his alms round. He correctly predicted that a man would in the future build a town on that spot and call it Harinphunchai Nakhon. Of interest in this temple is a large bronze gong which is claimed to be the biggest of its kind in the world. There is also an old wooden library (see below) which is built on a high brick pedestal. Thai people believe that this temple is one of the holiest in the country. It is also an important pilgrimage site for people born in the Year of the Rooster.