Bangkok Noi Canal
Canals, 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
Formerly 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.
The 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 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
This 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.
This 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 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
Formerly 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
This 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.
|Culture & Way of Life|
In the past Thai people settled down and established their communities along the rivers. Rivers and canals were the main channel for trading and transportation.