Wat Pong Mun Hot Springs

Discussion in 'Touring Northern Thailand - Trip Reports Forum' started by DavidFL, Sep 20, 2019.

  1. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator
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    #1 DavidFL, Sep 20, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2019
    Wat Pong Mun Hot Springs
    A very little known local hot springs "off the beaten track" at an unusual temple with a history.

    A local contact in a neighbouring district invited me to check out an attraction in "Phayamengrai" just down the road from Chiang Khong.

    39 kms from Chiang Khong / 25 kms from Phayamengrai on R1174 you turn off down a dirt track
    upload_2019-9-19_23-26-26.

    Take the rice padi road in for 2.8 kms & take the right fork
    upload_2019-9-19_23-28-43.

    Follow the hollow Buddha in
    upload_2019-9-19_23-29-13.

    After a couple of hundred metres you arrive at what almost seems like an abandoned derelict temple & pond; but there's no mistaking the Buddha over the pond.
    upload_2019-9-19_23-31-7.

    The pond has warm / hot water at one end & cooler water by the "floating"Buddha.



    A series of tanks at the hot end offer tanks of water at various temperatures.
    upload_2019-9-19_23-33-4.

    There's an open air tootsie bathing area
    upload_2019-9-19_23-53-48.

    Then at the back an old chedi undergoing excavation & restoration
    upload_2019-9-19_23-55-13.

    & another sala with ...
    upload_2019-9-19_23-56-1.
    I have to admit this was one of the more bizarre temple items I have seen in awhile.
    It was suggested to me that I could take his cap off for a closer inspection, but I humbly declined.

    Some Buddha images
    upload_2019-9-19_23-58-26.

    The second Buddha image from the front was hundreds of years old & the story goes it was once taken & kept at a wat in Chiang Khong, but was "recently returned"to its rightful place.... at Wat Pong Mun.

    Another temple guardian to add to the charming mystique of the place
    upload_2019-9-20_0-0-46.

    Paying homage...
    upload_2019-9-20_0-1-27.

    The abbot of the wat must be an interesting character with interesting ideas, but sadly the day I visited he was away.
    upload_2019-9-20_0-3-11.

    There is a bathing house for men & monks only. It consisted of an open room with a variety of tubs to be filled up.
    upload_2019-9-20_0-6-31.

    upload_2019-9-20_0-7-12.

    upload_2019-9-20_0-7-34.

    The pump was outside, waiting for someone to flick the switch on & fill 'er up.
    upload_2019-9-20_0-8-15.

    But as it was 5.15PM + time already, I figured it was time to move on for the day.
    Another visit is required to investigate more & perhaps get some info from the abbot on the history of the wat and his plans for developing his hot springs wat; because for sure there is a fascinating story there.

    The Wat Pong Mun hot springs are out in the peaceful countryside. It is a bit of a surreal place to take a meander off R1174
    upload_2019-9-20_0-11-10.

    The google maps location: Google Maps
     
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  2. ZCM

    ZCM Ol'Timer

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    Absolutely fantastic! What a great find David. I love the surreal aspect.
    I think this will go on my checklist of new places to see when I head your way for the Music Festival.
    Love it!!
     
  3. ZCM

    ZCM Ol'Timer

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    Even thought the bathing house is for men and monks only, I imagine it is still fine for a woman to visit the actual temple grounds, right?
    Was the bathing area far enough away to be ok for me to visit... ?
     

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