My friend Chris came from Australia come to work and stay in Thailand. And he really want to visit Ayutthaya province as this province is famous about the historical parks and ruin temples.
I just cam back from Chiangmai and Lampang for visiting historical park and temples as well so it is good idea to continue another period of history in Ayutthaya.
I set the date for him and invited another friend Sern and Fah to join this trip then we become 4 friends. Sern and Chris knew each other already but Fah is new friend for them but it does not a matter to enjoy the trip with new friend.
8.00am we all ready at Central World which is the meeting point (actually they told us to be ready at meeting point at 8.30am).
We booked join trip which will go to Ayutthaya by bus and return by boat on Chaophraya River. Chris is the most excited person for this trip.
8.45am the bus left Bangkok and heading to Ayutthaya and the first stop is at Summer Palace and Wat Niwes Thammaprawat. Actually, two places located next to each other but we have only 30 minutes here so we have to choose only one place and we agreed Wat Niwes Thammaprawat. The interesting point is we have to cross the river to another side by cable car.
-Wat Niwes Thammaprawat-
Located on an island in the middle of the Chao Phraya River on the south side Opposite Bang Pa-In Palace, to use as a place for religious ceremonies. Converted the palace to stay at Bang Pra In Palace His Highness, whom he created to be imitated by a foreign church By using Gothic art (Gothic), especially the temple's temple The building has a dome and a pointed tower, like the temple in Western architecture. At the top of the dome are a clock tower and a set of bells.
Above it enshrines the relics of the Buddha. The inside of the Ubosot enshrines Phra Buddha Narumon Thammophas as the principal Buddha image.
Which was designed by Phra Worawongsa Chao Pradit Worakan By using a combination of traditional and Western art In addition, the Chukchi base, which houses the principal Buddha image, is like a cross in the church. The window is pierced into an arched window.
And when looking back on the front wall of the principal Buddha image Will see the royal statue of Rama 5, adorned with stained glass ordered from Italy Is very beautiful, which cannot be seen anywhere in Thailand.
This is very beautiful temple. When we look from opposite side, we can see all buildings are in pink. Some people from the same trip visit Summer Palace but we do not have time so after visit temple we came back to the bus.
-Kong Kong Market-
After that the bus took us to the local market call “Khong Khong Market”. The name of the market came from the activities at the market.
The low level of food stall to put the food and goods which they sell while they sit on the small chairs. So, when customer come and want to check the goods they have to low down their back “Khong Khong”.
This market open every Thursday – Sunday and there are many shops and goods selling here like cooked food, raw food, vegetable, seasonal fruits, kitchenettes etc., The highlight is all the shop owner wearing Thai traditional.
We were enjoy eating food at this market. I ordered rice mix with shrimp paste and topping with green mango, pork, red onion and chili.
And we order few menus to join.
This market is clean and verity of food and they are very friendly.
We left the market around 2.30pm to continue to visit temples which is Wat Lokayasutharam located around 20 minutes from the market.
Wat Lokaya Sutha is a massive temple ruin. It is aligned toward an east/west axis. There are two small chedi outside of its compound, and a portion of the spire of a third chedi is still in situ.
These are all in a Late Ayutthaya period style. The monastery itself has been heavily restored, including floor tiles and brick floors throughout. Most of the temple exists only at the basic foundation level. This includes some stubs of pillars and basic walls. At the eastern entrance are the remnants of three vihans. Behind these sermon halls is a large 30 meters high, Late Ayutthaya period, Khmer-style prang (Kasetsiri & Wright 92). This prang-tower has a hollow entrance on its eastern side. The remains of an ubsot can be seen behind the prang. Only the basic foundation layer has survived, but there are many sema stones and the detritus of Buddha images. A large bell tower stands on the southwestern corner of this ubosot.
Personally, I think reclining buddha at Wat Pho is more beautiful but this one is older. We spent short time at this temple as it was late noon so it was very hot weather. Then the bus took us to another temple “Wat Phra Si Sanphet”
-Wat Phra Si Sanphet-
Was the holiest temple on the site of the old Royal Palace in Thailand's ancient capital of Ayutthaya until the city was completely destroyed by the Burmese in 1767. It was the grandest and most beautiful temple in the capital and it served as a model for Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok.
In its final stage before its destruction of the temple was an impressive structure. Additional facilities were located on a raised platform, the three Chedis, which are today the only buildings which have been restored. From all other the foundations are still preserved.
The chedi is built in the classic, Ceylonese design that is reminiscent of a bell. In every direction small chapels are recognized, lead to which steep stairs. The roofs of the chapels are in turn topped with a miniature Chedi. Each of the three chedi is on the eastern side assigned a Mondop where possibly footprints Buddhas were.
The terrace of the Chedi with Mondop were surrounded by a cloister (Phra Rabieng), in each case a hall was built in the west and in the east, an arrangement as can be seen in many temples in the country today. The building in the West actually consisted of four individual viharn, which were arranged in a cross shape to a Mondop around. The building to the east was the viharn Luang, the biggest building of the temple. In it stood the statue of Phra Si Sanphet Phuttha, which gave the name to the temple.
Symmetrically around the viharn Luang were grouped four other halls. North was a viharn which was a bit smaller than the viharn Luang, yet large enough to accommodate the more than 10 m high statue of Phra Phuttha Lokanat. East front was the Phra Chom Thong Tinang Throne Hall.
The guide explained about history about this temple which is very interesting. But we have very short time here and the parking for the bus is around 15 minutes by walk so we have only 15 minutes at the temple.
We all back to the bus and heading to the pier to get on the boat. It is catamaran boat with the proper seat inside air-con and upper deck with open air. The time we get on the boat is late noon so almost people prefer stay inside. But around 5pm some people go up to see sunset.
We reached to the pier (Sathorn Pier) around 8pm. I think this tour quite too long as we waste time for connect place to place by bus which is not convenience so it made us have very short time for each place.
Before we reach to the pier staff announce that next time they will change to visit other temples depend on time permit which I think better. In my opinion, Wat Yai Chai Mongkol, Wat Chai Wattanaram, Wat Mahathat are the most highlight of history and easier for logistic.
However, I think this tour is quite good if we have more time at each place.