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Things To Do In Ayutthaya: Travel Back In Time

Things To Do In Ayutthaya: Travel Back In Time
Anna
Anna
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There are still good things to look at, in the past - things that people treasured, loved and cared for, up until now. And when going to Thailand, one must not miss these astounding creations of the past.

A throwback to Ayutthaya's past glory

Source: Wikimedia

One of the best reasons to visit Thailand is to learn about the history and architecture of the country. Thailand has a lot of precious gems that need to be seen to appreciate their natural beauty. Visitors can admire Thailand’s strong architectural temples, the culture of the people and the many things to learn and explore - there’s everything under the sun, here and there’s more to see in Thailand than meets the eye.

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Ayutthaya and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Ayutthaya

1. Wat Phra Si Sanphet

Source: Wikimedia

Wat Phra Si Sanphet is also called the “Temple of the Buddha Si Sanphet”, and it was the most important temple in the Ayutthaya Kingdom. It is located in Pratu Chai, in the Phra Nakorn Si Ayutthaya district of Ayutthaya province. Situated within the royal palace grounds, this large monastery has a number of structures that were used by kings only. There is also a royal temple without resident monks. Apart from its historical significance, this temple has always been considered the spiritual center of the Thais, for a long time.

The temple also conducted ceremonies within the royal court, and is regarded as equivalent to Wat Mahathat in Sukhothai and used as a model for Wat Phra Sri Ratana Sasadaram (the royal temple of the Emerald Buddha) or Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok. Moreover, the temple was used for storing royal relics. The three chedis on the site are believed to keep the ashes of three Kings: King Trailok, King Borom Ratchathirat III, and King Rama Thibodi II, as well as Buddha relics.

This place serves an important role in Thailand’s history of art, culture and archeology and the remaining ruins still depict how glorious the country was.

Wat Phra Sri Sanphet

Address: Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand

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2. Wat Ratchaburana

Source: Wikimedia

Originally built in the 15th century, Wat Ratchaburana translates as the “Temple of the Royal Restoration” and it is located just across the road from Wat Mahathat. It was built by King Borom Ratchathirat II after a tragedy in which his brothers killed each other, fighting over who would become the next king.

There are two doors at the end of the shrine that lead out onto the grounds, surrounding the central prang or tower. The central prang is built in the Khmer style and rises up, high. A large amount of the golden artifacts and treasures found at Wat Ratchaburana are displayed in the Chao Sam Phraya National Museum. This museum also houses a nice collection of Buddha images in different styles, and wooden door panels from different temples in Ayutthaya.

The ancient artwork of this place is beautiful, it cannot be compared and it’s really worth the effort to see.

Wat Ratchaburana

Address: Tha Wa Su Kri, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand

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3. Wat Mahathat

Wat Mahathat, or the “Temple of the Great Relics” is located almost right in the center of Ayutthaya. People visit the temple just to see its most photographed feature - the interlaced roots of a tree around the head of a stone-carved Buddha.

This is one of the oldest and most significant temples in Thailand and its abundance indicates how significant the temple was to the local people as a religious center. It also enshrined Buddha relics and was the seat of the Supreme Patriarch of Buddhism, making it the center of Buddhism for the Ayutthaya Kingdom. When visiting this place, you will also find an amulet market, located just outside the temple and a huge Buddha in the viharn, or prayer hall, which rests in the meditating position.

Wat Mahathat

Address: Tha Wa Su Kri, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand

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4. Wat Phra Ram

Source: Wikimedia

The exact details regarding the construction of this temple is not known, however, similar to most Khmer style buildings of the time, the temple consists of a large central prang, or tower, with smaller towers surrounding it. Wat Phra Ram is situated next to a picturesque and panoramic view of a lake and close to the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Sri Sanphet. Just a short bike ride or walk away, this temple is just a bit outside the central part of the Historical Park of Ayutthaya.

In addition, Wat Phra Ram is commonly known among Ayutthaya residents as a recreational area and to top it all off, there is a large-scale swamp located in front of the temple and is known as Bung Phra Ram Public Park, formerly called Nong Sano or Bung Che Khan.

Wat Phra Ram

Address: Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Ayutthaya and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Ayutthaya

5. Amuse yourself with the remaining treasures of Chao Sam Phraya National Museum

Source: Wikimedia

Visiting a local museum is about as close as one can get to traveling back in time and the Chao Sam Phraya National Museum houses a lot of information and artifacts that every resident or traveler should know about. In a deeper sense, the museum helps to complete a whole tour of the area by giving visitors more information about the local history, design and architecture.

The Chao Sam Phraya National Museum exhibits various artifacts discovered during excavations and restorations of some of the ancient temples in Ayutthaya. The museum is named after Chao Sam Phraya, King of Ayutthaya in the 15th century. Exhibitions are displayed in three buildings and also feature artifacts from different time periods and from archaeological excavations around Thailand.

Chao Sam Phraya National Museum

Address: Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya 13000, Thailand

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Ayutthaya and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Ayutthaya

6. Behold Bang Pain Palace: The Summer Palace

Source: Wikimedia

To you want to see how royalty lived, visiting the Bang Pain Palace is worth the experience. Bang Pain Royal Palace is also known as the “Summer Palace”, and it is a palace complex formerly used by Thai kings. It is located beside the Chao Phraya River in Bang Pa-In district, Ayutthaya Province.

Taking a look over the palace, you’ll notice the buildings throughout are interesting for their diversity. The ambiance is unique as it pulls you towards the different settings as you go around the compound. A brief description of the palace will leave you in awe as you learn about three distinct types of architecture present in the palace complex, with Chinese, Thai, and European influences. Amidst the immeasurable gardens, stands the buildings of Wehart Chamrunt (Heavenly Light), a Chinese-style royal palace and throne room, the Warophat Phiman (Excellent and Shining Heavenly Abode), a royal residence and the Ho Withun Thasana (Sages’ Lookout). As well, you can see a brightly painted lookout tower and the Aisawan Thiphya-Art or Divine Seat of Personal Freedom - a pavilion constructed in the middle of a pond.

The palace remains largely open to visitors, as the Royal family use it infrequently for banquets and other special occasions.

Bang Pain Palace

Address: Highway 308 | Ban Len, Bang Pa-in 13160, Thailand

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Ayutthaya and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Ayutthaya

Transit through time

It’s amazing to see the remaining structures that are still preserved by the Thai people, today. Ayutthaya has a lot of picturesque places to visit and they give some insight into the glory of the past and its profound culture. Like a good recipe, Ayutthaya contains a lot of ingredients and elements that, cooked altogether, make for a favorable combination that any traveler would want to explore.

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