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Ayutthaya: Getting There

Written by admin on January 7th, 2014. Posted in Ayutthaya

By Rail    

Trains leave Bangkok’s Hualampong Railway Station , daily, every hour, from 4.30 AM until 11.25 PM. The trip takes 80 minutes to Bang Pa-In, and 90 minutes to Ayutthaya.
Schedules (Bangkok – Ayutthaya)
Schedules (Ayutthaya – Bangkok)  
 

By Bus

Direct Bangkok-Ayutthaya airconditoned buses leave Bangkok’s Northern Bus Terminal on Phaholyothin Road every 30 minutes between 6.00 AM and 7.00 PM. The trip takes 90 minutes. Non-airconditioned buses make the same trip in approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes.
Schedules & Fare Rates
(Tel: 0-2272-5299,0-2292-5242 for further details) 
 

By River 

The luxurious cruise from Bangkok to the former capital’s ruins of Ayutthaya and the Bang Pa-In Summer Palace are operated every day.
Click here for details of current trips and fares.  

Ayutthaya: Shopping

Written by admin on January 7th, 2014. Posted in Ayutthaya

Well known souvenirs from Ayutthaya are had made items such as

Pla Ta-Piean

Woven carp from dried palm leaf. This decorative art from dried palm leaf, a local material, has been a souvenir from Ayutthaya for more than a hundred years. 
 

Courtly dolls   

Courtly dollsThese small, elaborately painted dolls from baked clay picture Thai way of life. For example, there are farmer dolls, Thai boxing dolls and dolls performing Thai folk tradition. 
 

 

Ngob  

 Ngob is a traditional hat made from local materials such as dried palm leaf, bamboo, or rattan. 
 

Replica wooden house   

Replicas of traditional Thai house made of wood and cardboard in various designs are available at Ban Praek Market in Ban Preak District. 
 

Aranyik knives 

Aranyik knives have been renowned knives from Ayutthaya for a long time. Visitors may watch the manufacturing process and buy the products at Phainong Village and Tonpho Village in Nakhon Luang District. 
 

More handicrafts like glassware, hand woven fabric and basketries are available at souvenir shops, particularly the two biggest souvenir-shopping places in front of Mongkolborphit Temple and Bang Sai Royal Folk Arts & Crafts Centre 

Basket

Ayutthaya: Local Festivals

Written by admin on January 7th, 2014. Posted in Ayutthaya

Ayutthaya World Heritage Site Celebrations


Ayuthaya World Heritage Site CelebrationsDecember 13-19, 2001 , Ayutthaya Historical Park, Ayutthaya

Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991, Ayutthaya, an ancient Siamese capital, celebrates its glorious past with displays of traditional culture and lifestyles, numerous forms of entertainment, as well as spectacular light and sound presentations amid the ruins of this ancient city.

 

Bang Sai Arts & Crafts Fair


January – February , Bang Sai Royal Folk Arts & Crafts Centre, Ayutthaya

As part of assisting farmers obtain further means of livelihood, the SUPPORT project was established under H.M. the Queen Royal Patronage. Each year an annual fair displays the unique cottage industry products of this project, and allows visitors the opportunity to enjoy shopping and view exhibitions of local products. Folk entertainment performances enliven the fair.

Bang Sai Loi Krathong (Fesuival of Lights)


November 10-11 , Bang Sai Royal Arts & Crafts Centre, Ayutthaya

Bang Sai Loi Krathong (Fesuival of Lights) This event held during the full-moon in November features the launching of traditional floats (Krathongs), demonstrations and exhibitions of local handicrafts, as well as an array of other fun activities.

Ayutthaya: Trip Planning

Written by admin on January 6th, 2014. Posted in Ayutthaya

Ayutthaya is not far from Bangkok. It takes a little more than one hour from Bangkok so that you can go to Ayutthaya and return to Bangkok in the same day. But if you choose to stay overnight, you will catch the picture of the Historical City glowing in the light at night which is a wonderful scene. Ayutthaya also holds light and sound show once a year, telling stories from the history. For exact date of the show please follow our website.

Important tourist sites are historical places in the city island areas. As most of them are outdoor places, it is best to visit them in the morning or in the evening when the weather is not too hot. During the day, when it is too sunny, you may visit museums instead. In Ayutthaya you can also take a boat and enjoy the beautiful scenery along both sides of the river.

Ayutthaya: History

Written by admin on January 6th, 2014. Posted in Ayutthaya

Ayutthaya is an ancient city, founded by “King U- Thong or Ramathibodi I ” in 1350. It was used as the capital of Thailand for 417 ,during the Ayutthaya period, 33 Kings of 5 Dynasties reigned over the Kingdom.

During the first 180 years , the city was peaceful. The main acitivity then was about the state affair and trading which made Ayutthaya one of the most prosperous city in ASIA. But nine years after King Ramathibodi ll’s death in 1529 Ayutthaya became involved, for the first time , in a war with MYANMAR which led to many wars after that.

Ayutthaya was first defeated by the Burmese in 1569 , but 15 years later it was back to its glory agian by ” King Naresuan the Great “. Ayutthaya was peaceful again and enjoyed the activities in foreign affairs for about 118 years. It came to its peak until it was invaded and destroyed beyond repair by the Burmese in1767

The capital was moved to Thonburi by “King Taksin the Great” who had fought agianst the Burmese and depeated them. After 15 years of King Taksin’s reign , the capital was again moved to Bangkok by “King Rama the first“. The founder of the present Chakri Dynasty.

Bangkok Map

Written by admin on January 5th, 2014. Posted in Bangkok

Bangkok: Out-of-City Attractions

Written by admin on January 5th, 2014. Posted in Bangkok

For information about attractions in Ayutthaya, please click here.

Crocodile Farm


Crocodile FarmSamut Prakan Province

This large farm with over 60,000 fresh and saltwater crocodiles is some 30 kilometers from Bangkok. Daily shows featuring crocodiles are staged at hourly intervals. There is also a Dinosaur Museum where various species of life-size creatures of dinosaurs and their skeletons are on display. The compound is open daily from 7.00 a.m.-6.00 p.m..

Ancient City


Ancient CitySamut Prakan Province

Essentially an open-air museum, this more than 200-acre complex contains scale replicas of religious complexes, monuments and buildings found throughout Thailand. The complex is located at Km 33 on Sukhumvit Highway and is open daily from 8.00 a.m.-5.00 p.m.. The Ancient City’s office in town also organizes day tour to the museum.

Phuttha Monthon


Phuttha MonthonNakhon Pathom Province

This Buddha’s Precinct & Botanical Garden is located approximately 16 kilometres west of Bangkok. The more than 1,000-acre complex commemorates the Buddha’s enlightenment more than 2,500 years ago, and is dominated by a bronze walking Buddha image some 15 metres high.

Thai Human Imagery Museum


Thai Human Imagery MuseumNakhon Pathom Province

Located at Km.31 on Borom Ratchonnani Road, on the way to Nakhon Pathom, the museum houses life-sized fiberglass sculptures of former monarchs, ecclesiastics and rural folk, created by a group of Thai artists after 10 years of their intensive study and hard work. The museum is open from 9.00 a.m. – 5.30 p.m.

Rose Garden Country Resort


Rose Garden Country ResortNakhon Pathom Province

Located at Km.32 west of Bangkok on Phetkasem Road, this popular tourist attraction boasts large, beautiful, and well-maintained gardens. In the resort, there is a Thai Cultural Village where an attractive show commences daily. There is for instance, Thai folk dancing, Thai boxing, sword fighting demonstrations, and an elephant show. The resort is open daily from 8.00 a.m.-6.00 p.m.

Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo


Samphran Elephant Ground & ZooNakhon Pathom Province

Located just one kilometer from the Rose Garden, this 60 acre farm is another interesting attraction housing many different wild animals and thousands of crocodiles. Fascinating performances such as crocodile wresting, magic show, and elephant theme show commence everyday. The farm is open daily from 8.00 a.m. – 5.30 p.m.

Phra Pathom Chedi


Phra Pathom ChediNakhon Pathom Province

Located some 56 kilometers west of Bangkok, this bell-shaped, orange tiled chedi is the tallest Buddhist monument in the world, and marks the spot where Buddhism was introduced to the Thailand-to-be some 2,300 years ago.

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market


Damnoen Saduak Floating MarketRatchaburi Province

Located some 80 kilometers southwest of Bangkok, this popular floating market is accessible by regular bus from the Southern Bus Terminal. Everyday hundreds of vendor boats crowd the market area in the early morning till noon. Visitors can also travel around by boat to see local villages, and local way of life in the countryside.

Bangkok Noi Canal

Written by admin on January 5th, 2014. Posted in Bangkok

Bangkok Noi CanalCanals, referred to “khlong” in Thai, have always been vital forms of communication. When the capital of Thailand was moved to Bangkok in 1782 (the beginning of the Rattanakosin period), the capital was laced with canals, so Bangkok was sometimes called the “VENICE OF THE EAST” Today,Bangkok Noi canal is still charming for whoever wishes to seek the peaceful atmosphere amidst bustling Bangkok. 

Wat Rakhang Khositaram 

Wat Rakhang KhositaramFormerly called Wat Bang Wa Yai, the temple was built in the Ayutthaya Period, Later, King Taksin had it renovated. The principal prang, the only pagoda in Bangkok featuring Ayutthaya architecture, was once acclaimed by Prince Narissara Nuwattiwong as the most exquisitely-shaped prang.
 

 

 

Tamnak DaengThe Red Pavilion (Tamnak Daeng) was orginally in the Royal Palace of King Taksin. Later it was relocated to a spot north of the temple’s new ordination hall. It features spectacular mural paintings, King Taksin was believed to have come to the building regularly for meditation retreats.

 

 

The Tripitaka LibraryThe Tripitaka Library was once a residence of King Rama I when he was ranked as Phra Ratcha Warin. The building features mural paintings by master artist Nak ; gold and black lacquer paintings on the windows;a mythological bird on the main doors, and dragons carved on the side doors.
 

 

The Royal Barge National Museum 

The Royal Barge National MuseumThis shed where several royal barges are displayed is located on Bangkok Noi Canal off the Chao Phraya River not far from Phra Pin Klan Bridge. The barges are used on the royal and government occasions and formerly served as war vessels. The most beautiful and well-known barge is  “Suphana-hong”. It is used by the King only when he make His royal river procession for the Kathin ceremony, a Buddhist tradition of offering robes to monks, usually during October or November. Besides, the royal barges proceeded during the Rattanakosin bicentennial celebrations. Presently “Narai Songsuban Rachakarn Thi Kao” is the latest new royal barge especially built for the King and being used on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee of His Majesty the king Accession to the Throne since 1996. The unique design and decorative details of each barge should be of great interest to all visitors.
The shed is open to the public every day from 8.30 am. to 4.30 pm. There is an admission fee of 80 baht. 
 

Wat Suwannaram 

Wat SuwannaramThis temple was built during the Ayutthaya Period, though there is no evidence of who built it.The temple’s ordination hall combines the architectural style of the late Ayutthaya period with artistic approaches popular in the days of King Rama I. The structure is similar to that of the Temple of the Emerald Buddha in style, but the building has no galleries, It houses a bronze Buddha image in the gesture of subduing Mara.The image was believed to have come from SukhoThai.
Mural paintingsMural paintings are the highlight of the temple. They are works of master artist Thongyu of Luang Vichit Chetsada. Who lived during the reign of King Rama Ill, and of a Chinese artist named Khong Paeh. The former’s works depict scenes from previous lives of Lord Buddha. And the latter’s works depict Mahosot, with the Chinese technique of using slim drawing brushes, shades of colour and shadow effects to enhance the appearance of movement.
 

 

Ban Bu Village 

Next to Wat Suwannaram is Ban Bu Village on the bank of Bangkok Noi canal. The villagers are descendants of migrants who fled Ayutthaya when Burmese troops razed the old capital. The village is well noted for stone-washed metal bowls called Khan Long Hin. The bowl is made of a combination of copper, tin and special gold called Thong Mah Lau.

Bu Village Swordplay Camp is well known for a traditional art of self-defence apart from popular traditional Thai boxing. The traditional rite to pay homage to sword masters before a sword fight is well worth seeing.
 

 

Wat Si Sudaram or Wat Chi Pakhao 

Wat Si SudaramFormerly called Wat Chi Pa khao, the temple lies on the canal bank. Princess Si Sudarak elder sister of King Rama I, had it renovated. Further renovations were carried out during the reign of King Rama IV, with a new ordination hall created. Since then, the temple has been called Wat Si Sudaram.
The Sunthom Phu Monument at the site recallshis school days at the temple.

The Karn Parien multi-purpose hall was built during the Ayut Thaya Period. Much of the structure is well-preserved.

Somdet Phra Buddhajarn (To),the highly-revered sculp ted Scm det Phra Budd hajarn (To) image is the biggest in Thailand.
 

Taling Chan Floating Market 

Taling ChanThis market features a large variety of foods, fruits and goods. Perhaps it could be called a floating supermarket. Tourists can buy food and eat at a dining area provided by Taling Chan officials. On Sundays from 11 am to 2 pm, a traditional Thai music band entertains visitors. On the bank there are also sales and contests of seasonal agricultural produce. In addition, a two-hour boat tour is available to tourists. They can tour farming areas along the canal, including flower groves and fruit orchards. Alternatively, temples can be included in the tour. Between 800 and 1,000 Thai and foreign tourists take the trips daily. 

Bangkok: Cruise along the Chao Phraya River

Written by admin on January 5th, 2014. Posted in Bangkok

Chao Phraya RiverIn the past, Bangkokians usually settled by the Chao Phraya River (River of Kings) and gradually spread into the core of the country.Nowadays, even though Bangkok has become a modern city, you can still see traces of the Early Rattanakosin period such as architecture and traditional ways of life that has remained essentially unchanged over the centuries. 

 

The following magnificent temples and architectural structures can be seen on both sides of the Chao

 

Phra Sumeru Fortress         

Phra Sumeru Fortress Constructed in the reign of King Rama I in 1783.

 

      The Grand Palace     

The Grand Palace and The Chapel Royal of the Emerald Buddha

Details

             

Wat Arun or The Temple of Dawn

Details

  Wat Kanlayanamit  

Wat Kanlayanamit Very popular temple among the Thai and Chinese.

             
 Santa Cruz Cathedral  

Santa Cruz Cathedral
A Roman Catholic church constructed by the Portuguese.

 

   Wat Prayurawong  

Wat Prayurawong Constructed during King Rama III.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Koh Kret, Nonthaburi Province 


Tourists can travel further to Koh Kret, Nonthaburi Province. This is a tiny island in the Chao Phraya River. On it live a community of craftmen famous for their distinctive style of pottery which dates back many centuries. Koh Kret pots are known for their fine, red-black glazed surface and intricate design. The islanders are the descendants of the Mon people, and they have managed to retain the skills of their forefathers.

- Pottery Village
is located along the pathway around the island. There are some huts where visitors are able to see through the pottery making process. Villagers make various kinds of earthen products for daily use such as pots, mortars, and flowerpots. This is the oldest and biggest source of earthenware in Nonthaburi province. In the village, there is the Ancient Mon Pottery Centre where pottery in various style is exhibited.

- Wat Paramai Yikawat
was constructed in Mon style over 200 years ago. King Rama V commanded to renovate the monastery dedicated to his grandmother and to construct Phra Maha Raman Chedi (a chedi in Mon style) to house Buddha relics. The principal Buddha of the monastery is carved with marble in Mon style, so it is also called “Wat Mon” (Mon Temple).

- Wat Phai Lom
is well-known for the magnificent bot (ordination hall) in the Ayutthaya style. Some parts have been changed due to renovation. Behind the bot, there is a chedi in Mon style.

- Wat Sao Thong Thong
houses an old Ayutthaya style chedi and was the first secondary school in Pak Kret.

Bangkok: Rattanakosin Reverine Island

Written by admin on January 5th, 2014. Posted in Bangkok

 Rattanakosin Rattanakosin,an inner-city riverine island, is the historical heart of Bangkok. It is one of the most enchanting cities that many traveller from around the world wish to explore. Many historically significant structures are located here.

Rattanakosin Island Map 
 

The Grand Palace & Wat Phra Kaeo 

The Grand PalaceBeing the city landmarks, these two accompanying attractions serve to be the first place on any visitor’s itinerary.
The grand palace, founded in 1782, consists of several buildings with highly decorated architectural details.

Details of The Grand Palace

The Royal Chapel,Wat Phra Kaeo,houses the Emerld Buddha, the most sacred Buddha image in Thailand.

Details of Wat Phra Kaeo

The complex is open daily from 8.30 am to 3.30 pm. Proper dress is required.
 

Sanam Luang 

SanamluangThe Royal Field
This huge public ground is in front of the Grand Palace. Special activities or events such as the Royal Ploughing Ceremony in May, King’s Birthday celebration in December and the New Year Festival ordinarily take place here.

At the northern end of Sanam Luang, opposite the Royal Hotel is a small statue of house of the Goddess of the Earth, built during the reign of King Chulalongkorn (1868-1910) to provide public drinking water.

Sanam Luang is edged by several noteworthy institutions:The City Pillar Shrine, National Museum, National Theatre and The National Gallery.
 

Lak Muang

Lak MuangThe City Pillar Shrine

Located at the southeast corner of Sanam Luang, this graceful templelike structured building houses “Lak Muang” the first stone pillar of the city initiated by King Rama I, the first monarch of the present Chakri dynasty, as the foundation stone for his new capital city of Bangkok. Lak Muang is believed by many people to have the power of granting wishes.
 

 

The National Museum

The National MuseumWithin walking distance from the Grand Palace to the north, across Sanam Luang, is one of the largest and comprehensive museums in Southeast Asia. The National Museum houses over one thousand artifacts ranging from neolithic times to the present Bangkok period. The complex, also founded in 1782, consists of several old but beautiful buildings of colourful Thai architectural design.
The Museum is open everyday from 9 am to 4 pm except Mondays, Tuesdays and puhlic holidays.

Guided tours are provided in the mornings at 9.30 am.The tours are conducted in various languages.

Click here for details.
 

The National Theatre

The National TheatreIt is situated on Na Phra That Road next to the National Museum. Classical Thai dramas and other types of international arts are periodically staged here.
Current programmes can be checked out by telephoning the theatre on weekdays between 8.30 am and 4.30 pm. Special exhibition shows of classical Thai dance and music are held on the last Friday and Saturday of each month. Contact the theatre for more information.
 

The National Gallery

The National GallerySituated on Chao Fa Road opposite the National Theatre. The National Gallery compiles and displays both classical and temporary arts of renowned Thai artists for those who are interested in art appreciation or study. His Majesty the King’s oil paintings are also exhibited to be appreciated by the public.
The gallery is open everyday from 9 am to 4 pm except Mondays, Tuesdays and publicholidays.
 

Wat Pho

Wat PhoThe Temple of The Reclining Buddha

 This worldwide famous temple is located right next to the Grand Palace to the south. It is one of Bangkok’s oldest and largest temples. Wat Pho houses the gigantic gold plated Reclining Buddha image. This unique image is 49 meters long and 12 metres high with beautifully inlaid mother-of-pearl soles. Wat Pho is also regarded as the first centre of public edu- cation and is sometimes called “Thailand’s First University”

Details
 

Wat Arun 

 Wat ArunThe Temple of Dawn

 Located on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River, Wat Arun can be reached either by Arun Amarin Road or by crossing the river by boat from Tha Tien Pier, near Wat Pho. The most attractive structure of this temple is the 79-metre-high pagoda or “Phra Prang? Wat Arun was renovated during the brief Thonburi period to be the Royal Chapel of King Taksin. Despite the meaning of its name that is “The Temple of Dawn? the most beautiful view of it is from the Bangkok side of the river at sunset.

Details
 

Viman Mek Mansion & Abhisek Dusit Throne Hall 

Viman Mek Mansion & Abhisek Dusit Throne Hall Viman Mek Mansion including the Abhisek Dusit Throne Hall is located behind the National Assembly. Here, visitors can view such beautiful handicrafts as niellowares, Thai silk with various unique designs, and Liphao?basketry like beautiful trays and handbags studded with jewels in different designs such as green beetles.

Details
 

Wat Benchamabophit 

Wat BenchamabophitThe Marble Temple

 The Marble Temple is situated on Si Ayutthaya Road near Chitralada Palace. The temple is well-known because its main building was made of marble during the reign of King Rama V. The best time to visit the temple is the early hours in the morning when Buddhist monks are chanting inside the chapel. The interior of the main building is magnificently decorated with exposed wooden beams of lacquer and gold plate. A large collection of Bronze Buddhas is lined up against the walls of the spacious inner courtyard.

The main building is open to vistors until 5.00 pm. There is an admission charge of 10 baht.
 

Wat Suthat & The Giant Swing 

Wat Suthat & The Giant SwingWat Suthat is featured as Bangkok’s tallest Wiharn and houses a 14th century Buddha statue from the Sukhothai period, surrounded by rather surreal depictions of the Buddha’s last 24 lives. The courtyard is filled with odded statues of scholars and sailors, brought as ballast in rice boats returning from China, while the doors of the Wat have been carved by King Rama II.
In front of the Temple is the famous Giant Swing.In an annual ceremony to celebrate the rice harvest that was still observed just before World War II, men used to ride on the Giant Swing and try to grab a bag of siver coins attached to a pole; only the teak arch remains.

Many shop surrounding Wat Suthat stock a very comprehensive rage of Buddhist ecclesiastic supplies. 
 

Wat Saket 

Wat SaketThe Golden Mount

Wat Saket is an undistinguished temple except for the Golden Mountain or Phu Khao Thong, on the west side of the grounds. The steep climb tip to the Golden Mountain puts everything back in perspective and offers views over Rattanakosin Island that are simply stunning. The artificial hill was created when a large Chedi under construction by King Rama III collapsed because the soft soil beneath would not support it.The resulting mud-and-brick hill was left to sprout weeds until King Rama IV built a small Chedi on its crest.King Rama V later added to the structure and housed a Buddha relic from India in the Chedi. The concrete walls were added during World War II to prevent the hill from eroding.

Every November a large festival, held on the ground of Wat Saket, includes a candle light procession up the Golden Mountain.