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Post cover image: Samui Photo shoot location: Wat Plai Laem Temple

Samui Photo shoot location: Wat Plai Laem Temple

Date of publication: 23 Feb 2024

Welcome to Wat Plai Laem, a unique complex on Koh Samui! It is a visual treat for those looking for an interesting place for a photoshoot. The combination of colorful religious artifacts, stunning nature, and spiritual attractions make this a great place for photography.

What is there at Wat Plai Laem Temple?

Samui Photo shoot location: Wat Plai Laem Temple. photographer Dimas Frolov photo 2141
Photo by Samui Photographer - Dimas Frolov

The architectural landscape of Wat Plai Laem Temple is represented by five magnificent structures and an artificial lake. The lake has three islands. The central island, resembling a lotus flower, houses the temple.

It is an active temple. It is the central building for prayers and gatherings and is open to all. Locals often visit here to place flowers on the Buddha statue and kneel on special mats to pray.

On the islets on either side of the temple you will see two huge statues – the multi-armed goddess Guanyin and the monk Hotei. Each has a separate, ornate bridge over it.

Not far from the reservoir are a beautiful Thai temple and a small Chinese temple, both decorated in traditional styles. Throughout the complex, you can find many small statues and buildings suitable for photoshoots./p>

In addition to the temples, Wat Plai Laem Temple (Wiki about temple) has an active monastery where monks live. Also located here is the Viharn – a prayer and assembly hall.


As a religious site, Wat Plai Laem has a dress code, especially for tourists. Visitors to the temple must wear clothing that covers the shoulders, chest, and knees. Long pants, skirts or sarongs, and shirts or blouses with moderate cleavage are recommended.

These rules are part of the accepted etiquette for visiting Buddhist temples in Thailand. Visitors may be asked to purchase or rent suitable clothing at the entrance.

Despite being a popular tourist attraction, the temple retains a special spiritual atmosphere that can be captured in photographs. Wat Plai Laem offers many interesting angles and perspectives for photography due to its diverse architecture.

Natural Charm

Samui Photo shoot location: Wat Plai Laem Temple. photographer Dimas Frolov photo 2122
Photo by Samui Photographer - Dimas Frolov

The surrounding nature also contributes to the visual richness of Wat Phra Ram. The lake with huge catfish, turtles, and tropical vegetation around it creates a picturesque scene, especially if you catch the reflection of the temple in the water. By the way, all guests are offered the opportunity to feed the animals. This is a fascinating and fun activity, especially appealing for children. You have probably never seen such large fish jumping over each other in pursuit of food.

At Wat Plai Laem the opportunities for creativity and self-expression are endless. Different angles, intriguing details, and wonderful natural effects create the perfect environment for your photos. Whether it's a sunrise illuminating the surface of a lake or a sunset turning the sky a variety of colors, you're sure to find the perfect shot.

Time for Shooting

As for the timing of the photoshoot, the morning hours or the hours before sunset are the best time for shooting due to the soft light and beautiful hues in the sky. However, if you want to avoid many tourists, choose early morning hours.

Don't miss the full article Top 10 Samui Locations for Photoshoots

How to Find Wat Plai Laem?

This temple complex is located in the northeastern part of Koh Samui, 3 km north of the airport and 3 km east of Bophut Beach. A visit to this temple is usually combined with a visit to Big Buddha, 1 km away.


Plai Laem is more than just a place on the map. It is a true oasis that effortlessly blends natural beauty, religious charm, and visual splendor. Immerse yourself in this world and give your lens the opportunity to capture its magnificence.

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photo: Dimas Frolov
About the Author

Portrait photographer based on Samui, Thailand.
Originally from Ukraine, he has over 15 years of photography experience taking pictures around Europe and Asia. Multi-Award winner and author of many articles about photography.
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