The Grand Palace in Bangkok is probably the major tourist attraction of Bangkok. It is famous for its impressive buildings and its unique blend of Thai and Western architecture. Wat Phra Kaeo is renowned as the most beautiful and important Buddhist temple in Thailand. It enshrines Phra Kaeo Morakot, the highly revered Buddha image carved from a single block of emerald.
The land on which the Palace stands had earlier been occupied by the Chinese community. Construction began in 1782 and was completed in time for the coronation of King Rama I. The Grand Palace is open between 8:30 and 15:30; proper attire is required for visitors (shorts, miniskirts and slippers are not allowed - long trousers, skirts and 'proper' shoes can be rented for free in the palace).
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