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Located within the Phnom Penh Royal Palace complex, the Silver Pagoda (Wat Ubaosoth Ratanaram) is the pride and heritage of Cambodia. With its royal silver flooring with over 5000 tiles, people from far and wide come to witness this sacred site. Dedicated to Lord Buddha, this temple was built by the Cambodian royal family and houses magnificent statues made of gold, diamonds and precious stones. Immerse yourself in the royalty and grandeur of this Khmer architecture as you admire the beauty of the Emerald statue residing in the temple. Head on to a cultural exploration and uncover the treasures of the Silver Pagoda.

Silver Pagoda History

 Iconic Golden Maitreya Buddha at Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh.

Image Credit: David Schroeter for Wikimedia Commons

Also known as Wat Preah Keo Morakot, the silver pagoda was constructed with a wooden base in 1892. Buddhism was at its peak during this era and hence brought people together to pray and meditate in the temple. The temple’s regional name translates to the temple of the emerald crystal of Buddha. It has been the centre of prayer and devotion of the king and his family. All the major festivals of Buddhism are celebrated in the temple grandly. The temple was damaged heavily and reconstructed in 1962.

The temple is an important Buddhist shrine with a wide variety of bejewelled statues of the deity. It contains many statues, coins, manuscripts, weapons and musical instruments from the Cambodian period. Here are the most mesmerising statues of Lord Buddha within the premises:

  • Golden Maitreya Buddha: A life-size statue made of 90 kg of gold and more than 9500 pieces of diamonds clothing this exquisite statue. It is located at the main temple area and is considered the form of Buddha which will appear on earth in future to guide people to the right path. With the latest diamond being a 25-carat piece, you will be in awe as you witness this gem in person.
  • Emerald Buddha: Situated within the main temple area, you would witness the emerald Buddha in front of the Golden Maitreya Buddha. Seated on a gilded pedestal, this statue was constructed in the 17th century with Baccarat Crystals.

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Where Is Silver Pagoda Located?

Emerald Buddha of Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh

Image Credit: Noreay for Wikimedia Commons

The silver pagoda is located within the royal palace in Phnom Penh, particularly on the banks of Lake Tonle Sap. You can visit by entering through the main entrance and explore the beauty of this magnificent structure. You can visit both places on one ticket.

Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh Opening Hours

Ornate architecture of Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh

Image Credit: PsamatheM for Wikimedia Commons

The Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh is open in the two time slots given below. It remains closed on national holidays and critical Buddhist days. It remains open on weekends at the same time, but it might close due to renovation or any royal ceremony. However, verifying current opening hours directly with the attraction or local tourism sources is always best before planning your visit.

Morning: 8 AM to 11 AM
Afternoon: 2 PM to 7 PM

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Silver Pagoda Stupa

 Stupas of Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh.

Image Credit: Engsamnang for Wikimedia Commons

In front of the Silver Pagoda, you would see two stupas with a statue in between. These stupas are made of gold and silver and have intricate designs, detailed ornamentations, and carvings dedicated to the royal family. The stupas highlight the architecture of the Khmer dynasty and are a legacy of the royal family, which was dedicated to Buddhism. The stupas also contribute to Cambodian history and its strong faith in the religion.

North stupa: Containing the remains of King Norodom
South stupa: Contains the remains of King Ang Duong.

Silver Pagoda Murals

Ancient murals depicting traditional Cambodian scenes inside the Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh.

Image Credit: Pierre André for Wikimedia Commons

The temple walls containing the emerald Buddha are decorated with murals and frescoes done by Cambodian artists between 1903 and 1904. They depict the story of Reamker, the Khmer version of the Ramayana. The painting runs 642 metres starting from the south of the temple and depicts scenes from the epic tale. It was completed with the help of 40 Cambodian artists under the reign of King Sisowath and is an important part of Cambodian religion and heritage.

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Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh

Decorative detailings

Image Credit: Adam Carr for Wikimedia Commons

The Silver Pagoda is built using a fusion of Khymer and other Southeast Asian architectural styles. The floor is embellished with a 5329 silver tile weighing over 5 tonnes, hence its name. The staircase leading to the temple is made of exotic Italian marble. The temple building has a five-tiered roof with a serpentine design on the sides to protect the deity from evil.

Within the temple, there are over 1600 Buddha statues made of gold, silver, and other materials. These were gifts of devotion by the royal family and visitors. You would also see a massive bell hat in the west part of the temple. It is used during ceremonies and to remind visitors of the opening and closing times of the Silver Pagoda.

As you enter the temple, the entrance gate has four columns with carved figures of gods from Hindu mythology at the top. These columns are believed to protect the pagoda from evil and the divinity of Lord Buddha. There are also well-maintained ornamental gardens on the pagoda’s premises with traditional Khmer dynasty statues.

Silver Pagoda Nearby Attractions

From the majestic Royal Palace with its ornate architecture to the historic significance of the National Museum, the attractions near Silver Pagoda offer a comprehensive glimpse into Cambodia’s rich cultural heritage.

1. Royal Palace

Throne Hall of Royal Palace

Image Credit: PsamatheM for Wikimedia Commons

Located within the same complex, the Royal Palace was the residence of the King of Cambodia. It was constructed in 1866 and is a significant historical sight you cannot miss on your trip. Built in Khymer style the palace contains several gilded roofs and ornamental gardens. As you enter, you will see the grand building of Throne Hall, which was used for assemblies and coronation ceremonies by the royal family. The Moonlight Pavilion, situated within the palace grounds, was used for ceremonies and roll performances.

Entry fees: USD 10
Visiting Hours: 8 AM to 11 AM and 2 PM to 5 PM

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2. Cambodia National Museum

Cambodia National Museum, near Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh, is a must-see attraction.

Image Credit: Marcin Konsek for Wikimedia Commons

Located just one kilometre from the Silver Pagoda, you can visit the Cambodia National Museum by walking along the streets of Phnom Penh city. Built in 1920, this building houses the history and evolution of Cambodia. The museum is itself an architectural marvel with Khymer design and well-planned galleries displaying the artefacts. With extensive collections of statues of kings and lord Vishnu, ceramic utensils and daily life essentials of the Khmer dynasty in the museum, you will be amazed by the advancements of the ancient period.

Entry fees: USD 10 for foreigners and free for Cambodians.
Timings: 8 AM to 5 PM

3. Wat Phnom

Wat Phnom in Pagoda Phnom is a famous tourist hotspot near Silver Pagoda

Image Credit: Marcin Konsek for Wikimedia Commons

Located 1.5 km to the north of Silver Pagoda stands Wat Phnom at an elevation of 15 feet. It was constructed by a lady who found four statues of Buddha and one of Vishnu on a shore. With multiple renovations, Wat Phnom has a widespread altar with a bronze Buddha seated in the middle. The temple walls are intricately designed with the Jataka tales and Reamker stories. The temple is an important religious site and offers cooler weather, escaping the hustle and bustle of the city.

Entry fees: USD 1 for foreigners and free for Cambodians.
Timings: 7 AM to 7 PM

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The Silver Pagoda is a symbol of Cambodia’s culture and spirituality. An architectural gem, it has stood the test of time and shows the resilience of the temple. Come and visit this place yourself to admire its beauty and witness its historical significance. If this guide about the Silver Pagoda motivates you to plan a trip, then here are some of the best packages for a trip to Cambodia. Visit Cambodia to get a glimpse of the country’s culture and traditions.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Silver Pagoda

Is it necessary to hire a tour guide in a Silver Pagoda?

Although not necessary, a tour guide would enhance the quality of your trip. They would enrich your trip with the stories and history behind each statue and painting.

What is the Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh entrance fee?

The Silver Pagoda Phnom Penh entrance fee is USD 10. It goes into the maintenance of the temple and its artefacts.

How much time is required for a trip to the Silver Pagoda?

Around 2 to 3 hours are enough to cover the beauty of the silver pagoda. You can combine your trip and visit the royal palace as well.

Which are the photography-prohibited areas within the temple?

Photography is not allowed within the main temple area housing the golden Maitreya Buddha and tee emerald Buddha to protect the statues from the damage caused due to flash and respect the decorum of the temple.

What to wear when visiting a Silver Pagoda?

While visiting the Silver Pagoda, make sure to wear an outfit that covers your shoulders as well as knees. It is a sacred place hence it adheres to modest clothing.

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Category: Cambodia, Places To Visit, Temples

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