Connect with us


Tourists flock to Sichon temple, worship a spirit known for granting wishes




Thai tourists destinations have gone quiet due to the pandemic, but one southern Thailand temple is thriving. Nakhon Si Thammarat’s Wat Chedi is known for granting wishes, and apparently many come true (although people don’t tend to talk about the ones that don’t come true). It is packed with visitors not just on the weekends, but every day.

Visitors worship Ai Khai, the spirit known to inhabit Wat Chedi in the province’s Sichon district. Ai Khai has become famous for granting wishes like lottery wins, business success and the recovery of lost or stolen items.

When a wish is granted, people return to the temple to set off fireworks and donate a rooster statue along with other offerings in honour of Ai Khai. Military camouflage uniforms, black glasses and slingshots are popular offerings. The frequent boom from firecrackers and the thousands of rooster statues show that people are getting what they want.

Many believe the spirit of a boy, about 9 or 10 years old, inhabits the temple. They call him ‘Ai Khai’, which is a common nickname in the South for young boys. Legend has it that Ai Khai was a disciple of a revered monk during the Ayutthaya period. They say he drowned in a nearby river, but his spirit is still at the temple.

So many people visited the temple last month, many trying to get their hands on a special Ai Khai amulet, that the temple had to suspend amulet trading. The number of visitors continues to rise. The number of monthly visitors at the temple has increased from 300,000 to 500,000 people, according to director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s Nakhon Si Thammarat branch Pitsinee Thasniyom.

Nearby business and hotels have also benefited from the temple’s popularity. The province’s hotel occupancy rate is now at 90%. Tourists spent more than 800 million baht during the long holiday from September 4 to 7, Pitsnee says.

Flights to Nakhon Si Thammarat have doubled from 14 daily flights to 30, according to the chairman of the province’s chamber of commerce Krakow Tetiranon. He adds that airlines are continuing to offer new flights and hotels are often fully booked.

“As crowds have been drawn to the province over the past three months, local authorities have taken the opportunity to promote other kinds of activities, such as environmental and cultural tourism.”

But not every district in Nakhon Si Thammarat is benefiting from the temple’s success. Krakow says 5 of the 23 districts are seeing a gain: Muang, Sichon, Khanom, Tha Sala and Lan Saka. Sichon’s neighbouring district, Khanom, has changed since the pandemic. Once known for it’s quiet beach and “small town” feel, Khanom has become packed with tourists during the weekends.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.



  1. barry

    Sunday, September 13, 2020 at 12:11 pm

    Let’s hope Lord Ai Khai will help those of us struggling with Thai visa issues at the moment…

  2. Rinky Stingpiece

    Monday, September 14, 2020 at 9:42 am

    sounds like a business opportunity.

  3. Alan

    Monday, September 14, 2020 at 11:04 am

    Thailand is a land of spirits. I have first hand direct experience. I made a discovery as an English spirit medium/dream interpreter in my encounter with Thai Naga spirit mediums, the realm of the Naga, is what we call the Celtic Other-world. I met my kindred spirits, and we recognized each other. My heart is in Thailand, I was told I shall keep returning, and I will breathe my last breath in Thailand, because that’s where I came from long ago.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand17 mins ago

Cabinet seems to have ignored 4am nightlife proposal

Video1 hour ago

THAILAND NEWS TODAY | Korean woman arrested for 5-million-baht theft, 6-year overstay

Crime1 hour ago

Tuhao’s Chinese gang buys 50 homes in Bangkok luxury village with cash

Sponsored3 hours ago

Krungthong Plaza offers endless choices of well-selected plus-size fashion products

Road deaths2 hours ago

Bus flipped in Tak injuring 44 Burmese workers, killing 3

Thailand2 hours ago

3 men were arrested for stealing Thai Internet connection & World Cup betting in Cambodia

Pattaya2 hours ago

Intoxicated Pattaya woman left uninjured after overturning car

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Crime2 hours ago

Woman who allegedly scammed victims for over 30 million baht arrested in Pattaya

Bangkok3 hours ago

Bangkok BTS Skytrain fares to increase next year

Thailand3 hours ago

Police put brakes on car rental thief in Bangkok

World3 hours ago

New drug marks major milestone in slowing Alzhemier’s

World Cup3 hours ago

400 to 500 migrant workers in Qatar died due to World Cup, not 6,500

Visa4 hours ago

Thailand advises Indians to obtain visa prior to travelling to avoid long queues

Thailand5 hours ago

Driver furious with Bangkok shopping mall after foreigner accidently causes damage to her car

Politics5 hours ago

Iran promises Thailand it won’t attack Israeli tourists

Crime5 hours ago

Korean woman arrested for 5 million baht theft, 6-year overstay

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11