Hit the Road Pattaya to Ayutthaya - The former capital of the Kingdom of Siam
Exploring the former capital of the Kingdom of Siam is fun, and educational. Ayutthaya is a very old town in central Thailand that was once the bustling capital of the Kingdom. The center of Ayutthaya is an island surrounded by rivers that join together. These rivers are deep enough to accommodate large ships that would come from Europe to conduct trade.
Ayutthaya has had a Farang community for hundreds of years.
Drive your Rent to Buy Car from Pattaya to Ayutthaya
Having the freedom to get in the car and go is one of the greatest freedoms I can think of. Throw on some tunes, pack an ice chest full of road goodies, grab a bag, and get in the car for a road trip. Thailand is about the size of California and living near the center in Pattaya the way we do opens up just about all of Thailand within a day or so drive. The Rent to Buy program from Long Term Car Hire allows those of us with no alternative finance options to still get behind the wheel of a car at a reasonable rate.
After driving for years in America I was surprised at how easily I adapted to driving on the opposite side of the road in the opposite seat in the car. I have had no issues, with the exception of travelling back to the US to visit family and with my dad in the car I turned down the road and began travelling on the wrong side. The car coming at me began honking and my dad began yelling, and I began laughing. I hope that doesn’t happen again!
Things to Do and See While Visiting Ayutthaya
Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya has been a center for astronomy since the Ayutthaya period. The Planetarium is the second to be built in Thailand. King Narai the Great built an observatory near the place where the Planetarium is now, and King Mongkut restored it later to be his personal observatory. The Planetarium offers a 3D view of the constellations projected onto the dome ceiling as observers recline in seats to watch the spectacle. Learn stories of the constellations, and learn the art of star gazing and how to identify other bodies in the heavens such as comets, meteors, and shooting stars.
The show plays twice daily at 11 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
Ayutthaya Historical Study Center (AHSC)
The AHSC is a historical center dedicated to the history of Ayutthaya as the capital city of the Kingdom of Siam. The center is funded by the Japanese government and covers the Ayutthaya period which lasted from 1351 - 1767.
There are three models to show what Ayutthaya was like during it’s prime. One model shows Ayutthaya as the grand international trade hub it once was, and was dubbed the Venice of the East. The second model shows the Ayutthaya was a central state and the influence of the great elephants used for battle by royalty, and the third demonstrates Ayutthaya as a thriving rural village.
Standing on the island and seeing it in present day while looking at past models of what the city looked like once upon a time. The models make it very easy to imagine how grand the city was.
Chao Sam Phraya Museum
Right across from the AHSC on the island is the Chao Sam Phraya Museum, dedicated to King Borommaracha II (r. 1424 - 1448). He ordered the construction of Wat Ratchaburana aka the Monastery of Royal Merit.
The museum was built from funds raised by auctioning votive tablets discovered in the crypt of Wat Racha Burana to the public. Nearly 3.5 million baht was raised for the construction of the museum and it was opened in 1961.
The museum is filled with Archaeological relics dating back up to hundreds of years. There are royal artifacts, Buddhist artifacts, as well as tools and other things used by rural villagers. There are gems and gold on display, as well as examples of popular goods offered for trade during the period. There is even a replica of a Thai traditional Baan located in the center of a pond showing the way in which Thai people adapted to life on and in a river depending on the rainy season.
Temples and Ruins
There are so many temples to visit in Ayutthaya as well as ruins, ancient statues, pagodas marking the passing of kings as well as marking of battle fields. Ayutthaya was a hotbed of activity for hundreds of years, was invaded several times and there are ruins all over it. Check out this comprehensive guide to temple hunting in the Kingdoms former capital.
Accommodation in Ayutthaya
When you travel to Ayutthaya to experience the history and culture there is no better place to stay than a traditional Thai Baan and that is exactly what you get when you stay at Baan Thai House Ayutthaya. The bungalows are hand built from wood in the traditional Thai style with gorgeous wood carved trim. The homes are built on stilts out of necessity to their proximity to the river. Relax in 4 rai of lush tropical rainforest. There are 12 unique villas to choose from, each with it’s own charm.
Feel what it is to receive a traditional Thai massage or aromatherapy treatment in the ideal environment.
Enjoy the pool, spa, or cycling around the grounds. Visit sites by car or by boat. Spend a day or a week. Room rates range depending on size and time of year from 1900 baht to 3800 baht.
To book contact Baan Thai House at firstname.lastname@example.org or 080-437-4555