Wat Chaiwatthanaram is a Buddhist temple in the city of Ayutthaya, Thailand, on the West Bank of the Chao Phraya River, outside Ayutthaya island. It is one of Ayutthaya's best known temples and a major tourist attraction.
Wat Chaiwatthanaram lies on the west bank of Chao Phraya River, south west of the old city of Ayyuthaya. It is a large compound and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It can be reached by road or by boat.
The temple was constructed in 1630 by the king Prasat Thong as the first temple of his reign, as a memorial of his mother's residence in that area. The temple's name literally means the Temple of long reign and glorious era. It was designed in Khmer style which was popular in that time. It has a central 35 meter high prang in Khmer style with four smaller prangs. The whole construction stands on a rectangular platform. About halfway up there are hidden entrances, to which steep stairs lead.
The Wat Chaiwatthanaram structure reflects the Buddhist world view, as it is described already in the Traiphum Phra Ruang, the "three worlds of the King Ruang", of the 14th century: The big "Prang Prathan" that stands in the centre symbolizes the mountain Meru, which consists the central axis of the traditional world.