Wat Pun Tao temple is an ancient temple in the heart of the city, located on Pra Pok Klao Road, Tambon Pra Singha, Amphoe Muang Chiang Mai, Chiang Mai. It is adjacent to Lang Wiang Intersection which you can reach by turning left 50 meters off Wat Chedi Luang and the temple is on the left.
The temple is the former monastery and quarter and the area for molding Phra Attaros Buddha of Wat Chedi Luang.
Later, it was known as Wat Pun Tao. In the olden days, Chiang Mai people called the temple “Bhan Thao” (Pun Tao) which means making only one merit will return the maker one thousand times as many as one merit. Then, the name becomes widely known as “Pun Tao” due to mishearing. Another possibility for the name is that the temple is the place where thousands of metal melting furnaces for Buddha images are situated; therefore, the name derives from this.
In this temple, the most impressive and perfect monastery of the province is located here. The structure is made of teak in Chiangsaen style. Formerly, it was “Ho Kham” or “Khum Luang,” the residence for Phra Chao Mahotarapratessa, 5th King of Chiang Mai. In the reign of Inthawichayanon, 7th King of Chiang Mai, he had the residence dismantled as a charitable donation to Wat Pun Tao. Moreover, tourists can be impressed by the about-100-year pulpit elevated in ancient style. In the rear of Ho Kham is the principal bell-shaped pagoda of the temple surrounded by classical pagodas.
Spending time visiting the temple on religious holidays would be the best idea, especially on the night the temple organizes the light waving rite since the temple will be illuminated with candle flames flickering all over the temple court and a number of novices and monks will meditate there. In February, the temple will create a garden of 3,000 tulips in full bloom around the temple garden and court.