Attraction Huay Toh waterfall ,Krabi, Ao Nang, Thailand Published on: 03-07-2016
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Why Wat Tum Sang Phet (Diamond Rays Cave Temple) is special ?
Wat Thum Sua (Thum Seua) is an ecclesiastical residence for meditation founded by the Venerable monk, Ajarn Jumnien Silseto in B.E. 2518 (A.D. 1975)
Aj. Jumnien’s good friend is Jack Kornfield, who has written many books about the subject of meditation. Ajarn Jumnien and Jack Kornfield stayed at the same temple in Banasan, Surat Thani province, Thailand for a number of years. Yearly now Ajahn Jumnien goes to California to teach a meditation course with Jack Kornfield.
There are a handful of monks and nuns (majee) here at this temple.This is one of those Buddhist temples that are not on any tourist route – not on the tours, and usually no tourists come to visit the monks at this temple. It’s a good place to stop – even if you’re not Buddhist, just to see the cool temple grounds.
What to explore at Wat Tum Sang Phet (Diamond Rays Cave Temple)?
There are meditation halls, small caves and many stupas and other altars where one can make offerings. There are places to buy Jatukum (Jatukam) amulets which are made at the temple on the 2nd floor of the new chedi (seen below) as well as other amulets, cases, and memorabilia (charms, necklaces and bracelets).
They are building a new Chedi that will have 5 levels that are walkable but there are about 9 levels in total. The 5 main floors are very large. This chedi is 99 meters high. There are steps inside leading to the different levels, and though it’s not complete – one can walk all through the structure without being asked to leave. Floors 3-4 are good for meditation right now as there is little going on.
There are two very fun things to do at this temple
1. Go into the foothills and see the monks’ kutis (where they live) – they’re huts that are built into the caves. For this you can walk straight back to the far end of the complex near the female god, “Gwa-Neen” statue housed in the elaborate Chinese pagoda structure. Turn left and you’ll see stairs leading up the mountain. Follow them. It’s 136 steps up the first set of steps that leads to a small rest area with benches. Then it’s 87 steps back down into the valley (foothills) where the caves are. It is here that a large tiger that this wat was named after, used to live many years back.
In this area are some kutis where 8 monks live presently. The name of the cave meditation area in the foothills is called “Kiriwong Valley”. The other cave names: Tham Khon Than, Tham Lod, Tham Chang Kaeo, and Tham Luk Thanu.
The whole area is usually screaming with cicadas and it’s well worth the walk around the path that takes you by the 1000 year old tree (there are 2 and I’m not sure which one is bigger), more caves, and spiders in your face as you break the trail for those that will come after you if you happen to be the first one around the trail. You can see the monks as they live in this really lush jungle valley and dream about what it might be like to live there yourself as a monk.
There are bats that routinely fly through the caves every 10 minutes or so to check the cave for mosquitoes. I tried to get a picture of one with the flash but I couldn’t time it right.
Once you finish with the caves and walking around the foothills head to attraction number 2 if you have a LOT of energy left.
2. One thousand two hundred and thirty seven (1,237) steps above the ground level of Wat ThumSua is an incredibly scenic place, as well as an important Thai Buddhist monument. It is a tough climb if you are not fit and sometimes even if you are fit as you might be carrying your children on your back if you really want them to see it. There are numbers in orange on the hand rails corresponding to the number of step you are on. If you’re at 600 and are on the verge of heart attack, turn back or proceed very slowly. There are 3 steep sections, so don’t be disheartened when you face the first couple. It has taken me about 10 climbs to finally be able to just walk up it without stopping. It is always an effort though!
How to get to Wat Tum Sang Phet (Diamond Rays Cave Temple)?
It is right off the main road leading to Huay Toh waterfall in Krabi, Thailand. It is a rather hidden driveway down a hill, but, if you watch the video – you’ll know what to look for. The temple is located on the left hand side of the road as you’re going toward the waterfall. It is about 6km up the road once you turn left from Highway 4, after coming from Krabi town.
- A good place to stop
- One of the best off the beaten track in Krabi town
- Great Budda temple and lovely cave
- For the first time in Ao Nang
- Must visit even you are not Buddist
Huay Toh waterfall ,Krabi, Ao Nang, Thailand
It is wonderful to explore even if you do not have to be a Buddhist. A small Buddha statue in the middle of cave. We have come here to pray and return with good spirits. Good location for your family