In 1825, a Thai-Chinese nobleman named Chao Phraya Nikonbodin established a temple as an of-fering to King Rama III. The king acknowledged and praised his sincerity and friendship by nam-ing this temple, “Wat Kalayanamitr Varamahavihara”— “Kalayanamitr” in Thai means "a good friend.” He also commanded the construction of the royal assembly hall to enshrine Phra Phut-tarattananayok Statue. The statue, also locally known as “Phra To,” is a gigantic Buddha statue, measuring 15.44 meters tall and 11.75 meters wide.
Furthermore, this temple is the only temple in Thailand that has a Buddha statue in Palilai posture as its principal statue. Hanging inside the bell tower is the largest bell in Thailand. Thai people believe that Phra To is very sacred and that it can bless them with a safe trip and good friends.