Wat Chetawan, Petaling Jaya

Thai Buddhist Chetawan Temple, Petaling JayaLersi Shrine, Wat Chetawan

The Thai Buddhist Chetawan Temple, more commonly known as Wat Chetawan, is located in the heart of Petaling Jaya, KL’s thriving satellite city.

Brahma Pavilion, Wat Chetawan

The idea to build a Thai style temple in Petaling Jaya was first mooted in 1956 when the new town of PJ was just in its infancy. With generous support from many donors including, most notably, King Bhumipol of Thailand, the main hall was completed in 1962 and officially opened by the Thai monarch and his wife.

Main Shrine at Wat Chetawan

Various new halls, shrines and pavilions have been added in the decades since and now the temple complex includes a monastery, meditation hall and columbarium.

Amulets in Amulet Central, the gift shop at Wat Chetawan

The temple’s management seems quite adept at finding ways to earn revenue to cover the upkeep of the complex. There is a gift shop selling amulets, prayer beads, statues and other Buddhist paraphernalia.

Herbal Sauna at Wat Chetawan

There is even a herbal sauna which, according to the sign outside, can relieve lumbago, rheumatism, diabetes and ‘body fat’ among other complaints.

Columbarium, Thai Buddhist Chetawan Temple

One of the top earners must be the columbarium where devotees can intern the ashes of their loved ones. Apparently the cost of a single urn compartment is RM12,800 while a double compartment (for husband and wife) costs RM23,000. The temple’s website does not make it clear if that payment is for a fixed period of years or in perpetuity. Probably the former, since there would be running costs for cleaning, lighting, air-conditioning and maintenance. 

Room for two.

The temple is open daily from 7am to 9.30pm.

Inside the main shrine at Wat Chetawan


No. 24, Jalan Pantai, Off Jalan Gasing, 46000 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia

Tel: +603-79552443 (Administrative Office: open from 10.30 am to 4.30 pm).

Round the corner is Taman Jaya and the Petaling Jaya Museum, also worth a quick visit.

Reclining Buddha at Thai Buddhist Chetawan Temple, Petaling Jaya