Sukhothai Historical Park, the former greatness of
Sukhothai has been preserved. Ruins of the royal palaces,
Buddhist temples, the city gates, walls, moats, dams, ditches,
ponds, canals and the water dyke control system which was the
magical and spiritual centre of the kingdom are now preserved
and restored by the Fine Arts Department with the cooperation of
UNESCO, not only with a view of fostering Thailand's national
identity but of safeguarding a fine example of mankind's
The historical park has 26 old temples, each reflecting
magnificent art and architecture. The park is open to the public
everyday from 8.30 - 16.30 hrs. There is a Tourist Service
Center near Wat Phra Phai Luang. The center provides information
and facilitates visitors to the Shukhothai Historical Park, as
well as display models of historical buildings and structures in
the old city of Sukhothai.
Interesting Places :
Wat Mahathat is Sukhothai's largest Wat and a
customary main chedi, in lotus-bud shape, and a ruined viharn.
At the base of the Chedi stand Buddhist disciples in adoration,
and on the pedestal seated Buddha images. In front of this
reliquary is large viharn formerly containing a remarkable
seated bronze Buddha image of Sukhothai style, which was cast
and installed by King Lithai of Sukhothai in 1362. At the end of
the 18th century, the image was removed to the Viharn Luang of
Wat Suthat in Bangkok by the order of the King Rama I and has
since been named Phra Si Sakaya Muni. In front of the large
viharn is another smaller viharn which was probably built during
the Ayutthaya period. Its main Buddha image (8 m. high) was
installed inside a separate building. In front of the southern
image a piece of sculpture call "Khom Dam Din" (a Khmer who came
by way of walking underground) was found, and is now kept in
Phra Mae Ya Shrine near the Sukhothai City Hall.
Wat Si Sawai is situated among magnificent scenery
southwest of Wat Mahathat. Three prangs are
surrounded by a laterite wall. Inside the wall, the viharn
in the west, built of laterite, is separate from the main prang
which was constructed in Lop Buri or Hindu-style but the others,
also constructed beside the prangs, are Buddhist viharns. The
Crown Prince (King Rama VI), found a trace of Hindu sculpture
Sayomphu, the greatest Hindu God in this sanctuary. In his
opinion this ruin was once a Hindu shrine, but was later
converted into a Buddhist monastery.
Wat Traphang Ngoen, Situated to the west of Wat
Mahathat is Wat Traphang Ngoen with its square pedestal, main
sanctuary, and stucco standing Buddha image in four niches.
There is a viharn in front and, in the east of the pond, an
island with an ubosot. This edifice has already crumble and only
its pedestal and laterite columns still remain. Many monuments
and magnificent scenery are visible from this location.
Wat Sa Si is situated near Wat Chanasongkhram. Around
a Singhalese-style chedi is the main sanctuary on an island in
the middle of Traphang Trakuan pond. A large viharn contains a
stucco Buddha image. To the south stand nine chedis of different
Wat Chanasongkhram is situated to the north of Wat
Mahathat. Its main sanctuary is round Singhalese-style chedi. In
front of the chedi exists the base of a viharn and behind the
former stands an ubosot. Bases of twelve small chedis are also
visible. Near the Charot Withi Thong Road is a strange chedi
having three bases, one on top of the other.
The King Ramkhamhaeng Monument, Sukhothai is situated
on the north of Wat Mahathat. The bronze statue of King
Ramkhamhaeng sits on a throne named Phra Thaen Manangkhasila
Asana with a base relief recording his life.
Wat Sorasak, it is inscribed that Mr. In-Sorasak had a
strong belief in Buddhism so that he dedicated a plot of land
and asked for permission to built a temple to the king.
After completing the construction, a special celebration for the
establishment of Wat Sorasak was held. Perhaps, this
temple was built when the Ayutthaya controlled over Sukhothai.
It is believed this way because it was inscribed about "Augya"
that is the rank of nobleman in Ayutthaya period.
Wat Si Chum, This lies about 1,500 meters north of Wat
Mahathat and was originally surrounded by a moat. A square
mondop is the main sanctuary and contains a monumental
stucco-over-brick Buddha image in the attitude Subduing Mara,
called "Phra Achana". This Buddha measures 11.30 meters from
knee to knee.
The mondop is 32 meters square and 15 meters high, and the walls
are 3 meters thick. There is a passageway in the left inner wall
itself which leads to the above crossbeam. On the ceiling of the
passageway are more than fifty engraved slate slabs illustrating
At Wat Si Chum there is a mondop that houses a large stucco
image of the Buddha in the Marnvichai position, as described in
the first stone inscription. A tunnel has been made leading to
the temple's south wall, where there is a stariway to the roof.
Over the ceiling are 20 stone pillars, with inscriptions in the
Thai alphabet of the Sukhothai Period.
Wat Saphan Hin is situated on the hill 200 meters
high. A pathway of slate slabs leads to the sanctuary yard.
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