Sao Ching Cha

Sao Ching Cha is a landmark in downtown Bangkok, Thailand. It a giant red swing that is now located in front of a temple near a busy road. The giant swing was commissioned by King Rama I in 1784, and it was used for ceremonies up til the beginning of the 20th century. The game performed on this swing is no longer done because it is dangerous. The game involved having young men swinging to the height of 25m from the ground in an attempt to grab bags of coins placed on top of the posts with their teeth. In the euphoria of this event, dedicated to the God Shiva and the zealous excesses of trying to be the most skillful, some of the intrepid young men would fall to their death. As such, the tradition was discontinued and now the giant red swing remains only as a monument.

We found out about Sao Ching Cha actually when we were looking for an area within walking distance from the Grand Palace where we can find selections of local food vendors to try out for lunch. I found a website with reviews of places in a neighborhood close to Sao Ching Cha.

The photo below was taken from across the street of the giant red swing. You can see a couple of tourists standing near its base as size comparison.

Giant swing

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