Railay Beach: The Phra Nang Phallus Cave

THéo COurant

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Railay Beach: The Phra Nang Phallus Cave

In every culture, questions regarding fertility are frequently intertwined with beliefs and rituals, some more explicit than others. Phranang Cave is a prime example of this explicit connection.


Similar to its counterpart, the Bangkok Phallic Shrine, Phranang Cave houses several hundred phalluses, each varying in size and color.

A Protective Phallus

Certainly, every place dedicated to fertility possesses a unique history that bestows significance upon this distinctive devotion.

The local inhabitants, including fishermen and sailors, visit this cave to offer prayers to the Princess of Phranang Cave. She embodies an entity, a spirit believed to bring protection and happiness. This practice and belief are deeply rooted in the region, demonstrating the enduring presence of animism in an area where both state Buddhism and the omnipresent Islam coexist.

People flock to seek the Princess’s blessings, earnestly hoping for their wishes to be granted. Should their wishes come true, they return to express their gratitude through offerings of flowers and incense sticks. In moments of great fortune, or when a woman miraculously becomes a mother following her visit, devotees present this benevolent divinity with a wooden-carved lingam as a token of their gratitude.


An Ancient Tale: The Symbolism of the Lingam at Phranang Cave

Originally, the lingam was a representation of Shiva, or, at the very least, a symbolic embodiment of Shiva’s power—an ability to fertilize and breathe life, whether concrete or symbolic, into any entity or concept. Often taking the form of a phallus, the lingam appears under various names across many civilizations, including the Roman Priape.

Here, the symbolism resonates even more deeply. The sacred site is nestled at the cave’s entrance, featuring a pile of phalluses reaching towards the cave’s ceiling—a striking metaphor for the act of procreation and the anticipation of new beginnings, a forthcoming project.


Practical information about Phra nang Cave:

  • Phra nang Cave
  • Getting There: The cave is situated at the western tip of Railay Beach, accessible by boat from Ao Nang Beach.
  • Open 24/7 - Free admission.
  • Popular Destination: This site attracts a large number of visitors due to its popularity.

Additional information on Railay Beach