Things you should and shouldn’t do when visiting a Buddhist temple

Once traveled to a sacred destination(a Church, a mosque or a Buddhist temple), there are some things that you should and shouldn’t do in order to avoid impiety. 

Asian countries are the home of so many Buddhist temples with distinct architectural style and great history. Tourists from all over the world often come to Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Indonesia, Vietnam, etc to experience the majestic beauty and the culture of Buddhism.

things to do at a Buddhist temple

Buddhist temple - a sacred destination

However, there are things that you should and shouldn’t do when visiting a Buddhist temple. Keep them in mind in order to avoid becoming an ignorant tourist. 


Point at the Buddha

It’s such a rude behavior when you point a finger at someone even when you are outside the temple. Remember to not point at Buddha statues, Monks, Nuns and elders. When you step out of the shrine, you should walk backward to avoid turning your back on statues. 

Touch any artifact

Do not touch (especially on the head) or rely on any Buddha statue, image. Moreover, do not eat or break any offering or anything else, even just a leaf.

Even though you are on your honeymoon, please keep your hands away from your sweetheart. You are at a temple, not a park. 


Photography (with or without flash) is not allowed in most of the sacred destinations. Therefore, you’d better not taking picture when you step inside the worship place. 

In case this action is not forbidden, do not get too close to a Buddha statue when taking a picture. If it’s possible, kneel on the ground to keep you head lower than the statue.


Dress discreetly

Do not wear shorts, skirts, and/or sleeveless shirts. You should be covered down at least below your knees. There are some places that have clothes hire service but you might not want to put on these sweaty and smelly clothes. Therefore, cover yourself before entering an honorable attraction. 

things to do at a Buddhist temple

Dress discreetly at a Buddhist temple

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Take off your hat and shoes

You can wear shoes and walk around the ground outside but remember to take off your shoes (and your hat) when you come inside the shrine. Make it easier by wearing slip-ons instead of running shoes. 

Bow your head

While pointing your finger and staring at the Buddha statues are disrespects, bowing your head below honorable Buddha statues, Monks, Nuns and elders is always the right thing to do. 

things to do at a Buddhist temple

Bow your head to show your respect

Show your respect

There are those meditating or praying somewhere even though you may not see them so remember to keep quiet. Even when you are so happy, you shouldn’t laugh too loud in pagoda. 

If you come with your children, talk to them about the rules before entering any Buddhist temple and always keep an eye at them. 

Follow the directions

In some sacred attractions, they often offer some directions or rules that visitors should follow. You can get information about the map, the history, and the culture of the place you come to so remember to read the guide carefully. 


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