Through some good friends of ours, we found the Wat Mongkolratanaram Buddhist Temple of Tampa. They would always rave about how great the Sunday Market is and it was on the list, so we had to see for ourselves. We decided to make a lovely brunch for ourselves on a Sunday of perfect weather. The sun was out but it wasn’t hot; the breeze was carefully whispering by.
We accidentally slept in so we had to wait through some lines. It is definitely recommended to go slightly early to beat the long lines of the authentic Thai food. We got an egg roll, guiteow (pork noodle soup), and a potato puff. I also got a Thai fruit juice with floating coconuts. The best part is the extremely cheap prices of the food. For under $15, we ate and got full from food we had never tasted before.
We took our food to a lovely ledge near the water and shared our meal. My husband showed me how to eat soup with a spoon because obviously it was not an easy task for me, so eventually he caved and brought me a fork, haha.
After finishing our meal, we wandered to the temple which is guarded by two grand sculptures of dragons. Additionally, there were gold statues beautifully placed throughout the temple grounds.
We then slipped off our shoes and walked into the temple. Slews of reds and golds dazzled your eyes upon entering. There was a man explaining the history and the practices that go on. There were people getting ready for meditation on the floor. It was just a peaceful experience taking in all of this culture and putting it in my pocket.
Lastly, we walked around the other side of their market where they sell fruit and vegetable trees. I want to return and buy a pomegranate tree and a desert flower tree. They even had citronella trees and many orchids. I was in a purple flower daze.