During our stay in Bangkok, we made a day trip to Ayutthaya, 80 km north from the city. Ayutthaya was the capital of the Kingdom of Siam from the 14th to the 18th centuries. The city was destroyed by the Burmese army in 1767. The ruins, known today as Ayutthaya Historical Park, were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991.

The park includes several sites scattered around 289 ha, and it may take more than one day to see them all. We focused first on Wat Phra Si Sanphet, which was the holiest temple of the city. Three chedis (towers) have been restored. They bear witness to what must have been an impressive structure.

We had lunch in a restaurant by the river.  After that, we headed to Wa Maha That, or the Monastery of the Great Relic. There, you will find a Buddha head entwined in tree roots that has been widely photographed. However, what I found really beautiful was the remains of all the other Buddhas. You’ll see many without their heads. In one case, only the hands are left.

 

After one day of exploring, we went back to Bangkok.  From there, we continue our trip to Cambodia to visit another UNESCO World Heritage Site, Angkor Wat.

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