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Phrathat Ruang Rong – Sisaket Temples

If you are flying to Ubon Ratchathani for a tour of the Northeast of Thailand, Sisaket province should be the 2nd leg of your journey and Phrathat Ruang Rong (วัดบ้านสร้างเรือง or พระธาตุเรืองรอง) a must-see temple. While Sisaket is known for its famous Temple of a Million Bottles (Wat Pa Maha Chedi Kaew), made from large bottles of Heineken and Chang Beer, Phrathat Ruang Rong is also a popular tourist attraction among locals.

Phrathat Ruang Rong covers a large area of temple grounds, and features six stories of sacred and cultural exhibitions. The art and architecture is a blend of arts and culture of the four tribes of South Isaan: Lao, Swe, Khmer, and Ye. The temple features gigantic sculptures of the Buddha, oxen, owls, and Hindu gods; delightful sculpture scenes of apes; and antique pots, vases, and collectibles. The temple has the feel of a grand, sacred Isaan museum, rather than a typical temple that one sees in the Northeast of Thailand.

The center of Phrathat Ruang Rong stands some 50 meters high, and there are many elevated spots from which you can look down over the sculpture-filled grounds, as well as view the surrounding communities. The temple is located only about 8 kilometers from the city of Sisaket, which makes it more convenient to visit than the Temple of a Million Bottles, which is over an hour away. It is also only 10 minutes from Wat Maha Puttharam, another beautiful Sisaket temple.

Phrathat Ruang Rong was built in 1968 by Luang Pu Thamma Phitaksa. The temple is named after its most sacred Buddha image, where is enshrined relics from the Buddha, thus allowing local Buddhists to come worship before these items, instead of having to travel to distant provinces to come into the presence of such sacred relics. The temple can sometimes get filled with visitors on the weekends, with bus tours coming in. However, if you visit during the week, you can often have this gorgeous temple and museum virtually all to yourself.

If you wish to visit Phrathat Ruang Rong from Sakon Nakhon, you can reach Sisaket province by car or bus in about 4.5 hours. You can purchase a bus ticket online or buy one at the Sakon Nakhon Bus Terminal, where you’ll be leaving to take your journey. Price of a VIP ticket will be around 450 baht.

Phrathat Ruang Rong – Wat Ban Sang Ruang