About 20 kilometers from Lampang is the old temple of Wat Phra That Lampang Luang. On first glance, this walled citadel sited on a man-made mound of earth has a very fortress-like look to it. That's because the temple was built on the site of an eighth century fortification, called a Wiang , that guarded the routes to Lampang.
The temple buildings seen today were built in the fifteenth century, and one of the reasons for the temple's popularity is the relatively pure state of all the temple buildings. Unlike most of the temples in Chiang Mai, Wat Phra That Lampang Luang hasn't been 'improved' to conform to modern Thai ideas about temples. The courtyard is still filled with sand, and the huge main wiharn (prayer hall) is still open on all sides.