Friday, July 13, 2012

Along the Mekong in Si Chiang Mai

Wat Hin Mak Peng pagoda
Following the mighty Mekong river along the border with Laos, we came to the district of Si Chiang Mai. 

Coming up here is worth it just for the scenery. 

High cliffs along the Mekong
We visited a few monasteries up here in Nong Khai province and our first top brought us to Wat Hin Mak Peng, a beautiful thudong temple where forest monks live a more ascetic life then those monks who reside in the big city temples. 

Wat Hin Mak Peng temple
Besides the picturesque setting of temple structures on high cliffs along the Mekong river, there are several pagodas on the huge temple compound, which contain the remains of very important monks like Luang Poo Tet Tet Lang Sii.  

Mondop with footprint of Buddha
Another place we stopped by up here was Wat Phra Buddha Bat Wern Gum, where we went to visit the Mondop building, which contains a footprint of Buddha. 

Pagoda overlooking the Mekong

As we drove along the winding road at the river, we could see another pagoda from far. Up on the hill overlooking the Mekong and Laos on other other side was Wat Aranya Banphot. The impressive and huge pagoda here contains remains of several highly respected monks.