Wat Pa Wiwek Chanthraram (วัดป่าวิเวกจันทราราม) is a beautiful forest temple, which you'll pass on the road to the new Satit Ket Kaew Udom Dharma Practice Center. It's charming little red-brick Ubosot and intriguing array of Buddhist statues make for a mythical and mystical atmosphere.
The gated entrance to Wat Pa Wiwek Chanthraram, which is rather worse for wear, doesn't draw much attention to it, and is easily missed as you travel along Route 2033, a road which runs parallel to one of Sakon Nakhon's major canals. But as you enter the temple grounds, you'll be entranced by a striking, red brick Ubosot, protected by two gold 6-headed Naga dragons. Nestled amidst leafy palm trees and other flora, the Ubosot evokes ancient Buddhist mythology and spiritual secrets, accessible only to the enlightened.
As you venture further into the forest temple, you'll find a fascinating variety of Buddhist sculptures. One of the most intriguing is a statue of the Buddha being protected by the King of Snakes, Mucalinda. This occurred during his meditative pursuit of enlightenment under the Bhodi tree. The statue has been placed on a 6 sided hexagaon platform, with placards of yantras attached to the sides. Yantras are geometric diagrams that assist in deep meditation, and are popular among Thai men who receive spiritually based tattoos on their backs.
There is an additional yantra placard at the base of the platform, making 7 in total. This would seem to represent the 7 days where the 7-headed Mucalinda serpent appeared to protect the Buddha from a violent storm that appeared above the Bodhi tree. Mucalinda also can appear in human form, and did so after the storm had passed, bowing at the foot of the Buddha before descending to his palace in the underworld.
Wat Pa Wiwek Chanthraram also has a series of small huts, housing statues of several famous monks, including Luang Pu Thep Lok Udon, Phra Ratchakhru Luang Phon Samek (Phra Kru Khi Hom), and Luang Pu Ya Than Samretlun (หลวงปู่ญาท่านสําเร็จลุน). Leaving from downtown Sakon Nakhon, you can reach the temple in about 25 minutes.