Originally the ancient capital of Thailand, Ayutthaya is one of Asia’s most impressive forgotten cities. Surrounding the ancient capital are the 3 rivers Menam, Lopburi, and Pasak. Visiting the prosperous old town will give you a glimpse of the glorious past that once ruled here. It takes at least 2 days to see all the sights in Ayutthaya and more if you do not feel rushed. There are many historical sites for you to visit. Let me introduce for you those places.
1. Wat Phra Si Sanphet Temple
Wat Phra Si Sanphet has the most beautiful architecture and was the most important temple in the Ayutthaya period. The temple consists of three large stupas and several smaller stupas, which are generally incorporated into the temple, also known as the King’s Pagoda, one of the most impressive architectural monuments of the citadel. Two of the large stupas, one in the east, one in the middle built in 1492 by King Rama Thibodi II as the burial place and worship of his father and brother. His temple was built in 1530 by his third son, the king, Boromaraja IV. When exiting the temple, you can meet the ruins of the foundation of Wang Luang and the Grand Palace was completely destroyed by the Burmese.
2. Wat Ratchaburana Pagoda
Wat Ratchaburana was built by King Boromracha (1424 – 1448) to commemorate his lost brother. Nowadays, the columns and walls of the temple and some ruined stupas are still present. However, it seems to be a tourist attraction when traveling to Ayutthaya. The main area has the most intricate decoration mortar. Besides, Photographs by a Chinese artist living in Ayutthaya were also drawn and they are the combination of Khmer, Burmese, Lopburi and Sukhothai styles.
3. Wat Mahathat Pagoda
Wat Mahathat is located on the east side of the palace, on Th. Chee Kun Road and Naresuan Road. It was built by King Rameseun in 1384 with the most impressive architectural. In 1625, the top of the pagoda was damaged and rebuilt 4 meters higher in 1633. Later, the pagoda was collapsed again, leaving only the corners. In 1956, people explored a secret chamber containing treasures of gold, a gold coffin, a statue of Buddha, and a beautiful tableware. When coming here, you can have the opportunity to learn more about Thai culture as well as the custom of people. Do not hesitate to ignore this pagoda.
4. Chao Sam Phraya National Museum
Undoubtedly, the newest modern architecture in Ayutthaya is the Chao Sam Phraya National Museum built by King Bhumibol Adulyadej in 1961. There are a number of sculptures dating back to the early history of Thailand. Moreover, the prominent point is the statue of the sitting Buddha and a Buddha statue giant U Thong. When you come here, you will feel the fresh air as well as something typical of the ancient capital on Thailand land.
5. Wat Yai Chai Mongkol Pagoda
Located on the eastern outskirts of Ayutthaya, the giant Wat Yai Chai Mongkol Chedi lies on a square base surrounded by four smaller stupas. This pagoda existed from 1357 under the reign of King U Thong. Nowadays, it was entrusted to strict monks who were all trained in Sri Lanka, still living there. To find this pagoda, you cross the Pasak River and take the Bangkok Road and then turn right about 300m across the railway.
6. Wat Na Phra Men Pagoda
Wat Na Phra Men is one of the few temples that escaped the destruction of Burma army. It is unknown when the temple was built now. Perhaps, it was constructed in the reign of King Boromakot (1732 – 1758) and was rebuilt in the early part of Bangkok. The pagoda architecture is carved on beautiful wood at the corridor and door. Particularly, the noteworthy things are the many statues of Buddha because they are dressed in the royal style that is different from the usual.
Because Ayutthaya is the ancient city of Thailand, its structure mainly is the pagodas. Nevertheless, if you feel boring when having a trip to the beaches, luxury restaurants, vibrant bar, or entertainment area, do not hesitate to visit pagodas. I am sure that it makes your feeling more relaxed. Lastly, I hope you will have a good trip with family and relatives.