BANGKOK — Several major roads in the capital will be briefly closed to traffic during Pope Francis’ visit to Bangkok starting Wednesday, officials said.
The four-day trip will take place from Nov. 20 to 23, but the traffic will be most disrupted on Thursday and Friday, when Pope Francis is due to hold an audience with His Majesty the King, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, the Buddhist Supreme Patriarch, and preside over two masses with the public.
Use the interactive maps below to find roads to avoid and suggested detours around the affected roads on Nov. 21 and 22.
Nov. 21: The Apostolic Nunciature – The Government House – Wat Ratchabophit – St. Louis Hospital – Ampornstan Palace – National Stadium – The Apostolic Nunciature
Pope Francis will travel from the Apostolic Nunciature on Sathon Road to Government House on Phitsanulok Road at 8am via Rama VI Road and the Expressway.
He will move on to Wat Ratchabophit on Atsadang Road to meet the Supreme Patriarch at 10am and then to St. Louis Hospital on South Sathon Road to meet hospital staff at 11am.
He will roll down the streets again at 4.30pm for a private audience with King Rama X at Amphorn Sathan Palace on Ratchadamnoen Avenue via Sathon, Rama VI, the Expressway, Phitsanulok Roads.
Pope Francis will back at the city center at 5.20pm to preside an open-air Holy Mass at the National Stadium on Rama I Road.
Nov. 22: The Apostolic Nunciature – St. Peter’s Parish – Chulalongkorn University – Assumption Cathedral – The Apostolic Nunciature
Pope Francis will travel from the Apostolic Nunciature to St. Peter’s Parish in Sampran district, Nakhon Pathom at 9am and then return at noon.
He will leave the Apostolic Nunciature again at 3pm to meet leaders of other Christian denominations at Chulalongkorn University and then preside over a Holy Mass at Assumption Cathedral on Charoen Krung Road at 5pm.
Red lines are routes to avoid, while green lines are alternative routes suggested.
More than 6,500 security officers have been deployed for the papal visit. A security drill was also conducted on Saturday.
The police said each road will be blocked no longer than 10 minutes. The road will be reopened as soon as the motorcade passed.
For the faithfuls who are not able to book a seat for the Holy Masses, the visit will be broadcasted live on television as follows:
- NBT (Channel 2) 8.50am to 10am – Pope Francis’ speech to government officials and diplomats at the Government House
- NBT (Channel 2) 6pm to 9pm – the Holy Mass at the National Stadium
- TNN (Channel 16) 9.30am to 12pm – the Holy Mass at St. Peter’s Parish in Sampran, Nakhon Pathom
- PPTV (Channel 36) 3pm to 5pm – the meeting with Christian leaders at Chulalongkorn University
- MCOT (Channel 30) 5pm to 7pm – the Holy Mass with the youth at Assumption Cathedral