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Ayutthaya
Attractions > Center > Ayutthaya > Palaces and buildings  
 
 

What to see in Ayutthaya

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Palaces and buildings in Ayutthaya

 

There were three palaces in Ayutthaya: the Grand Palace, Chankasem Palace or the Front Palace, and Wang Lang or the Rear Palace.

Grand Palace

Currently called "The Ancient Palace", this residential dwelling for every King was located close to the city wall. Important buildings inside the Grand Palace compound are :

Wihan Somdet Hall

The hall was decorated with gold leaf and surrounded by cloisters. It was used for various royal ceremonies including coronations.

Sanphet Prasat Hall

This building, in the same design as Wihan Somdet Hall, was used by the king to welcome foreign envoys and visitors .

Suriyat Amarin Hall

A four-gabled building of sandstone and brick. it is close to the riverside city wall. It was used for observing the royal barge processions.

Chakkrawat Phaichayon Hall

This three-gabled hall is on the inner eastern city wall in front of the Grand Palace. It was used to view processions and military exercises.

Trimuk Hall

Located behind the Sanphet Prasat Hall, this hall is believed to have been the royal consorts' living quarters with a regal leisure garden.

Banyong Rattanat Hall

This four-gabled hall is located on an island in a pond at the back of the Grand Palace.

 

Wat Phra Si Sanphet

Wat Phra Si Sanphet

Originally used as a royal chapel . This large temple compound contains a line of three tall chedis. This line of chedis has become widely identifiable with the Ayutthaya style.

 

Wihan Phramongkhon Bophit

Phra Mongkhon Bophit, a large bronze cast Buddha image, was originally enshrined outside the Grand Palace to the east, but later transferred to the west and covered. In the 1767 sacking of Ayutthaya, the building and the image were badly damaged by fire; the renovated ensemble is not as finely crafted as the original. The open area east of the Wihan was formerly Sanam Luang, where the royal cremation ceremonies look place.

Wihan Phramongkhon Bophit

 

Wat Phraram

Wat Phraram

This monastery is situated next to a pond. outside the Grand Palace compound to the east, with a pond in front. King Ramesuan had it built where King U-Thong's royal cremation ceremony took place. It now also functions as Phra Ram Public Park.

     

Wat Mahathat

Located in front of the Grand Palace to the east near Pa Than Bridge, this temple was constructed in King Borom Rachathirat I's reign.

 
   
Wat Mahathat Wat Mahathat
 

 

 Wat Ratchaburana

Wat Ratchaburana

This temple is located near Pa Than Bridge opposite Wat Mahathat. King Borom Rachathirat II commanded two Chedis built where Chao Ai and Chao Yi engaged in elephant-back combat during which both were killed . Later, be added a wihan so as to create a temple.

 

Suan Somdet

Situated on U-Thong Road to the southwest of the city, this is a large public park with a display of various plants referred to in Thai literature.

 

 

Chankasem or Front Palace

This palace beside the Pasak River was built by King Maha Thammaracha, the 17th  Ayutthaya monarch, as a residence for his son. Like other ruins, it was destroyed in 1767 by tile Burmese and abandoned. In the mid-19th century, King Rama IV ordered it rebuilt as a residence for his occasional visits to Ayutthaya. Some of the more interesting sites are:

City Wall and Gate

These were newly constructed by King Rama IV. The original foundations have since been discovered, revealing that the original area was much larger.

Phiman Rattaya HaII

A group of buildings located amidst the compound of the Grand Palace which once served as government offices.

Phlapphla Chaturamuk

This wooden four-gabled pavilion is near the east gate or the palace and was a residence of King Rama IV during his visits to Ayutthaya.

Phisai Sanyalak Hall

This is a four-storey tower located close to the western side of the Grand Palace. First built under King Narai the Great, but destroyed during the second fall of Ayutthaya. It was reconstructed by King Rama IV as an observatory, The palace is now used as a national museum displaying china, weapons, Buddha images, sculptures and votive tablets of different times, and personal effects of King Rama IV. Open daily 9 .00 a.m.- 4.00 p.m. except Monday, Tuesday and national holidays.

 

Wat Senasanaram

This ancient temple as Wat Sua is behind Chankasem Palace. The main attractions are two Buddha images: Phra Samphuttha Muni, the principal image enshrined in the Ubosot, and Phra In Plaeng enshrined in the Wihan. Both were taken from Vientiane.

 

Wat Suwandaram Ratchaworawihan

This is a temple within the royal compound, located to the southwest near Pom Phet Fort. Originally called Wat Thong, it was extended and restored several times under the Chakri kings. The upper murals in the Ubosot depict the gathering of the deities, and the lower ones depict stories from the life of the Buddha. The front wall shows the Buddha subduing evil. Within the Wihan, King Naresuan the Great is depicted,

 

Wang Lang or the Rear Palace

Situated close to the western city wall, this palace was originally a royal garden with only one residential building. King Maha Thammaracha had more buildings built, and it became the palace of King Ekathosarot. Later, it became a residence for royal family members.

 

Chedi Phra Si Suriyothai

Chedi Phra Si Suriyothai

This memorial to the first heroine in Thai history is located at Ko Mueang to the west. Suriyothai was King Maha Chakkraphat's consort. In 1548, he went to repel a Burmese invasion. During the fighting on elephant back, the king was in trouble and Suriyothai, clad as a warrior, rode her elephant at the Burmese commander, and was cut to death by his sword. The king had her cremated at a place which became named "Wat Suanluang Sopsawan".

In King Rama V's reign, after a quest for the historical site, the exact location of Wat Suanluang Sopsawan was identified with a large indented stupa, renamed Chedi Phra Si Suriyothai. In 1990, the Chedi was restored.

 

Wat Lokkayasutha

This temple adjacent to Wat Worachettharam features a large reclining Buddha, of stucco- clad brick, 29 m. long. Large hexagonal pillar ruins are thought to be of the Ubosot.

Wat Lokkayasutha

 

Wat Kasattrathirat Worawihan

This temple is located outside Ko Mueang, opposite Chedi Phra Si Suriyothai, beside the Chao Phraya River, It has a prang as its centre.

 

Wat Chaiwatthanaram

Also located beside the river, on the west of the city island, this temple was built by King Prasat Thong in a Khmer-influenced style with a main stupa and lesser stupas along the gallery. It can be reached by river from Chankasem Palace.

Wat Chaiwatthanaram
Wat Chaiwatthanaram

 

Wat Phutthaisawan

This temple is situated on the river bank opposite Ko Mueang to the south, in the area where King U-Thong established his city. The most interesting feature is the great principal Buddha image of the early  Ayutthaya Period.

 

Portuguese Village

The Portuguese Village or Mu Ban Protuket is located at Samphao Lom, on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River to the south of the city. The Portuguese were the first Europeans to trade with the Ayutthaya Kingdom, sending a diplomatic mission to King Ramathibodi II's court in 1511. The Portuguese also came as military volunteers in the Ayutthaya's army and as Christian missionaries, and they settled at this site. Remains of San Petro, a Dominican church, and some objects such as tobacco pipes, coins and religious items have been found here.



Wat Phukhao Thong

Wat Phukhao Thong

Located 2 km. northeast of the Grand Palace, this temple was constructed in 1387 under King Ramesuan.

 

Elephant Kraal and Pavilion

The kraal and pavilion is located 4 km. from the city along Highway 309. The kraal is formed by a circular teak stockade and earthen wall which was created in 1957. The enclosure was used to pen wild elephants for battle training, while being observed by royalty and other spectators. The king used the pavilion as his vantage point.

Elephant Kraal

 

Wat Kudidao

Located in front of the railway station, this old temple features superb , though deteriorated, decorative craftsmanship.

 

Wat Samanakottharam

Located near  Wat Kudidao, this old temple's main attraction is a large prang haying on unusual aspect. It is believed to be based on Chedi Chet Yot at Chiang Mai.

 

Wat Na Phramen

Wat Na Phramen

Located on the bank of Khlong Sabua opposite the Grand Palace, this temple of unknown age is of a very old typical Thai style. Most interesting is the principal Buddha image in regal attire and another image in the small Wihan, made of black stone.

Wat Na Phramen

 

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