The historic city of Ayutthaya was once the capital of Siam from the mid-1300s until the mid-1700s, when the Burmese overran it. The Burmese burned most of the city down, and all that remains today are the stone buildings. After this, the capital was moved to Bangkok, which was originally set up just as Ayutthaya was.
Visitors can come to Ayutthaya and get a glimpse into what life might have been like when the city was once thriving based on the towering ruins of the temple complexes and reliquary towers that remain.
Wat Phra Si Sanphet
Wat Phra Si Sanphet is an impressive temple, and the most important one, in Ayutthaya. It was the temple for the royal family and was only used for royal ceremonies. There are three chedis, which probably holds the three Kings ashes, King Trailok, King Borom Ratchathirat III and King Rama Thibodi II.
These temples are all gold, and had a tall golden Buddha, which the Burmese army took when they ransacked the city.
Wat Ratchaburana is a large temple complex that is filled with lotus flower carvings and intricate mythical creatures. The largest crypt in the country is inside of this temple complex, covered in murals of Buddha from the 1300s.
The temple was built by King Borom Rachathirat II on the land where his brothers were cremated, who fought each other to the death to try and win the throne.
Wat Mahathat makes for one of the best photo opportunities in Ayutthaya with it’s large Buddha head that is tangled up in the roots of a bodhi tree.
This temple complex was where King Borom Rachathirat I ruled from and is considered to be very important, and therefore is a very popular attraction.
Wat Phanan Choeng
Wat Phanan Choeng is a temple complex that was built in the early 1300s. It contains a 19-meter tall Buddha with 84,000 smaller images of Buddha surround him all along the walls.
Visitors can cover their head with the bottom of this large Buddha’s robe on almost any day of the year, whereas most other temples only allow this on holidays. There are other wonders to discover here, including interesting Chinese shrines.