Sunday, May 2, 2010

Life in TH - Glory of the Past, Ayutthaya (Part I)

Ayutthaya was founded around A.D.1350 by a Prince of U-Thong.It used to be one of the richest cities in Asia by the 1600s, exporting rice, animal skins, ivory, etc. In 1767 the city was completely burned during the war.

I took BTS to Victory Monument in Bangkok and took a mini van that cost 60baht. The whole journey took around one and a half hours depending on the traffic in Bangkok. The final stop point is at the central of Ayutthaya.

I hired a tuk tuk to bring me around for 10hrs @ 1000baht, well it was good because I was bringing lot of stuffs, other alternatives are renting a bicycle or motorbike which will be cheaper.

I planned my route with my 'private' tuk tuk driver, starting from the southeast corner in the morning and traveled anti clockwise in the afternoon and sunset @ Wat Chaiwatthanaram follow by light up tour at night.

Well, let start the adventure:

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The enormous Buddha 'Luang Po To'

Wat Phanan Choeng

The main wiharn is just barely big enough to house the colossal 19 meter (63 feet) high Buddha image. On special days, there can barely be enough room to squeeze past people praying in front the image in order to see the entire space. Press on through, because its worth it.

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A friendly monk was preparing for a praying in a smaller hall beside the entrance

Admission: Free

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Outdoor White Reclining Buddha in Wat Yai Chaimongkhon

Wat Yai Chaimongkhon

I reached here, before noon time while the hot sun already burning my head.

This monastery, contructed during the reign of King Uthong, is located outside the city to the southest in the same direction as the railway station. I can see its large pagoda from far away.

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Hot burning steps leading up to top

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Top view down

Opening: 08.00 -18.00 daily
Admission: 20Baht

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This masterful mural in ordination hall of Wat Suwandararam, Ayutthaya, shows the brave King Naresuan on elephant back defeating the Burmese Crown Prince (Phra Mahauparacha) in 1592

Wat Suwandararam

Wat Suwandararam is located in the southeast corner of Ayutthaya old town, off U-Thong Road. The temple was originally built during the Ayutthaya era, and then extended and restored several times by the Chakri kings.

Within the viharn is a masterpiece painting illustrating the bravery of Naresuan the Great, the king who secured Ayutthaya's independence from the Burmese in 1584.

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Admission: Free

Headed back to the central for lunch, the driver brought me to an airconed restaurant. It is located right opposite of Wat Mahathat...

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