This is our first trip ever to Ayutthaya and we headed straight to Don Muang railway station immediately after touching down in Bangkok!
On board the train to Ayutthaya!
Sala Ayutthaya Hotel
While waiting to check-in, a serene river view greeted us : D
Oh a horse! Yeah, like never see a horse before right? Keke. But it is always wondrous to see them again, and then again the next time, and again…
As we had travelled to Ayutthaya from Bangkok in the same day that we flew over, it was already late. Hence, we left our luggage with the reception even though we got our room keys. Then we went on to explore what we could with the remainder of the late afternoon.
Modern buildings built around remnants of temple ruins
While walking to a main attraction, Wat Mahathat, we walked past regular buildings with remnants of ancient Ayutthaya in them. We can see the characteristic red bricks they were built with.
Occupants of these buildings prayed at the remnants of the old structures. Sometimes the remnants aren’t huge and are merely fragments made up of no more than twenty bricks.
This parallels visible facades of castles and monasteries sitting on top of even older ones which have been buried over centuries, and here I am seeing this happen first hand in the now in Ayutthaya.
After a short walk, we arrived at Wat Mahathat.
Headless Buddha statues.
A few completely intact structures in the ruins of Wat Mahathat.
Buddha head entwined in the roots of a banyan tree.
It is amazing to observe the details of restoration work on the ancient city ruins. Concrete is packed into the red bricks, and are sculpted into shape with details carved into them.
The columns between the brick base of the wall and the brick top has mostly been reinforced by concrete. Some red bricks peek through the concrete from within. The column designs were replicated, albeit in concrete.
Concrete reinforcing the weak sections of the Stupas.
These wooden beams are a less elegant yet effective way to prop up an otherwise intact brick wall.
Malakor Café and Restaurant ร้านมะละกอ
The next morning
The Reclining Buddha Sai Yat
It was huge and magnificent! A photo does it no justice, so here is a series of them with each more zoomed out than the other.
A friend, P’Tu runs a shop in Chatuchak and while we were there, a group of Malaysian tourists walked past. With wife and I spiaking mandarin with them, the whole “oh you are from Singapore!” and “oh you are from Malaysia!” thingie loosened purse strings and they actually bought a few high value items.