Must See Historical Attractions In Ayutthaya Thailand
Ayutthaya, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a top attraction in Thailand you don’t want to skip out on! Situated about 80 kilometers north of Bangkok, Ayutthaya is a popular destination for both Thais and foreign tourists, bringing in around 2 million visitors each year!
Founded in 1350, Ayutthaya was the capital of the Siamese Kingdom for over 400 years before it was destroyed and burned to the ground by the Burmese in the 18th century.
Today what is left is the vast ruins of a city that had once dominated the scene of international trading. In this article, we’ve got you covered on must-see historical attractions in Ayutthaya that are definitely worth a visit!
One of the most visited historical sites of Ayutthaya, Wat Chaiwattanaram rests on the bank of the Chao Phraya River west of the city island. The temple was built in 1630 by King Prasat Thong as a memorial to honor his mother. On each side of the main ordination hall are two Chedis or Stupas where his mother’s ashes are enshrined.
The architectural style is thought to be influenced by the Angkor Temple in Cambodia. Its unique feature is a large, central prang (Khmer-style pagoda) surrounded by smaller prangs symbolizing Mount Sumeru.
Wat Chaiwatthanaram opens daily from 8 AM until 5 PM. Admission is 50 Baht per person.
Wat Phra Si Sanphet
Wat Phra Si Sanphet was considered the holiest temple on the site of the Wang Luang, or Royal Palace before the city was destroyed by the Burmese in 1767. Built In 1350 by King U-Thong, it was used as a residential palace until 1491. It was then converted into a monastery and Wat Phra Si Sanphet was established.
The distinctive three chedis in the center of Wat Phra Si Sanphet make this one of the most iconic temples of Ayutthaya. These three main chedis which have been restored contain the ashes of three Ayutthaya kings.
Wat Phra Si Sanphet opens daily from 6 AM until 5 PM. Admission is 20 Baht per person.
Wat Phra Mahathat, Temple of The Great Relics, was a royal temple of the Ayutthaya Kingdom. It is one of the oldest and most significant temples in the history of Ayutthaya. The temple was constructed in 1374 by King Borom Rachathirat I.
A prang was built to enshrine Buddha’s holy relics. The prang once about 50 meters high, has been destroyed twice. Relics and artifacts are now housed at the Chao Sam Phraya National Museum.
One of the temple’s most photographed objects is the head of a stone Buddha image entwined in the roots of a Banyan tree.
Wat Mahathat opens daily from 8 AM until 5 PM. Admission is 50 Baht per person.
Wat Phra Ram
Despite its proximity to Wat Phra Si Sanphet and Wat Mahathat, Wat Phra Ram is a significant site that most people miss. Less popular than some of the other ruins in Ayutthaya makes more reason to visit this impressive temple.
Built in 1369 by King Ramesuan, the monastery was constructed on the cremation site of his father, King U-Thong. The temple was restored in the 15th century and extended throughout the Ayutthaya period.
In front of the temple is a large pond called Bung Phra Ram, formerly named Nong Sano. The soil was dug out at this site to raise the foundation grade of the temple and construct the surrounding temples, Wat Mahathat and Wat Ratchaburana.
Wat Phra Ram opens daily from 8 AM until 4:30 PM. Admission is 40 baht per person.
Wat Ratchaburana, The Temple of Royal Restoration, was built in 1424 by King Boromma Rachathirat II as a memorial to his two elder brothers. The two elder brothers fought to their deaths in a duel for the royal succession to their father and the temple was built on their cremation site.
In 1957, the crypt of the Wat Ratchaburana was looted and many precious artifacts, including gems and Buddha images, were stolen. The thieves were caught but only some of those treasures were recovered. These items and many more that have been discovered are now exhibited at the Chao Sam Phraya National Museum.
Wat Ratchaburana opens daily from 8 AM until 5 PM. Admission is 50 Baht per person.
Make Sure You Visit Ayutthaya!
You don’t have to be a history buff to appreciate the beauty and magnitude of this grand ancient city! Don’t miss these must-see attractions while visiting the Ruins of Ayutthaya! Only 85 kilometers from Bangkok, make Ayutthaya a top destination while in Thailand!
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