This important and most outstanding monastery is located in the Grand Palace compound like Wat Phra Si Rattanasatsadaram (Wat Phra Khaew) of Bangkok.
Originally built in 1448 as the king’s private chapel, Wat Phra Sri Sanphet is just south of the raised Grand Palace area. King Ramathibodi II ordered the casting of a standing Buddha image 16 meters high and covered with gold.
This image was called Phra Buddha Chao Si Sanphet and was the main object of veneration in the royal viharn. From that time, the remains of all royal family members were placed in small chedis built for that purpose on the site.
The gold and decorations were looted. Later, King Rama 1 had the badly damaged Buddha statue removed for preservation in a specially built chedi within the Wat Phra Chetuphon, and had installed a replacement Buddha image called Phralokanat.
Nearby are three Sri Lankan-style chedis, built during the 15th century to enshrine the ashes of three Ayutthaya kings.