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Top 10 Temples in the World

by Ellen Morgan on 17 July 2014, 08:07AM

If you like a dash of culture on your holiday, why not add a temple or two to your itinerary? From ornate shrines in Asia to grand domes in the Middle East, the world is full of beautiful temples. We've rounded up the top 10 that should be on your bucket list.

 

1. Wat Rong Khun, Thailand

Wat Rong Khun Temple in Chiang Rai is known to some as the “White Temple” and is a more unconventional approach to a traditional temple. Painted white to symbolise Buddha’s absolute purity, Wat Rong Khun features a host of slightly strange paintings, photos and statues inside. It's a must-see attraction in Thailand.

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2. Borobudur Temple, Indonesia

Featuring 504 Buddha statues, Borobudur Temple stands tall in Central Java and holds the title of largest Buddha Temple in the world. Borobudur is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and this magnificent temple is Indonesia's single most visited tourist attraction. If you're planning a trip to Indonesia, tick this off while you're there.

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3. Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Cambodia is home to the breathtaking Angkor Wat, the largest religious monument in the world. Angkor Wat was built as a dedication to Vishnu, a Hindu God and is meant to represent a microcosm of the world in stone. So grand, many often consider Angkor Wat as one of the Wonders of The World.

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4. Jokhang temple, Tibet

For most Tibetans, the Jokhang Temple is considered the most sacred temple in the whole of Tibet. Also known as the “House of The Lord”, the Jokhang Temple, of which the main building still stands from the 7th century, hosts the annual Great Prayer Festival and attracts many tourists and pilgrims every year. You can see this temple as part of a trip to China.

 

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5. Sheikh Zayed Mosque, Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi is home to the exquisite Sheik Zayed Mosque, the eighth largest mosque in the world and a structure designed to unite the diversity of Islam and the Islamic world. With the capacity for 40,000 visitors, Sheikh Zayed Mosque is regarded as a sacred and peaceful place of worship. Intrigued? Find out more about the best architecture in the Middle East.

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6. The Harmandir Sahib, India

Also referred to as the “Golden Temple”, The Harmandir Sahib Temple is located in Punjab, India. The Temple was built by the 4th Sikh Guru and is considered holy by Sikhs, however the initial purpose of the Temple was for men and women of all religions and walks of life to come and worship as they please.

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Candi Prambanan, Indonesia

This 9th century Hindu Temple situated in Indonesia, devoted to the ‘Trimurti’- the expression of God as the Creator, Preserver and Destroyer. The largest Hindu site in Indonesia and biggest in Southeast Asia, the Prambanan Temple Compound consists of 240 temples which are still standing today.

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8. Shwegadon Pagoda, Myanmar

Also known as the ‘Great Dagon Pagoda’ and ‘Golden Pagoda’, the Shwegadon Pagoda stands at 325 feet tall, dominating the city skyline in Dagon, Myanmar. 2,500 years old, the Shwegadon Pagoda started off at around 8 metres tall and today stands at approximately 110 metres and is an iconic building recognised throughout the world.

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9. Temple of Heaven, China

First built in 1420, the glorious Chinese Temple of Heaven is open to the public as an insight into Ancient Eastern civilisation. With so many specific parts of the temple, visitors can take day tours around the temple and explore this complex of religious buildings; a must see attraction in Beijing.

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10. Sri Ranganathaswamy, India

Dedicated to Hindu God Vishnu, Sri Ranganathaswamy is recognised as the largest temple in India and one of the largest religious complexes in the whole world. Consuming 156 acres of land, the Sri Ranganathaswamy temple is grand in size as well as detail and architecture.

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To get your temple fix, take a look at our Asia holidays and trips to the Middle East. Or why not book a multi-centre holiday, and see two countries in one incredible getaway?


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