Am gonna try to avoid my standard journey start day with “we woke up early on the morning… story”, I mean obviously you start early right cause a traveler would want to maximise and optimise their day, money and daylight…. Wah… like real…. hehehhe but true though. Since we have skip that cliché introduction of how my day started, lets go straight to the point shall we.
Hehehehe….. We took the famous Thailand tuk tuk… ok! For those that never heard or tried tuk tuk before, it’s a must do thingy here, those who afraid of “speed” cum “traffic”; make sure the distance is REALLY short! :p …… no worries, its safe. Hehehee (Yeah! Am just being cheeky!). Basically, it’s a motorized version of the traditional rickshaw, a small three-wheeled cart operated by the driver.
We reached Hualamphong Train Station kinda early since we haven’t purchase the tix as yet. Here’s the funny part, assuming that a train journey of 1.5 - 2 hours will cause close to RM10, I have “prepared” sufficient budget and small change, and guess what? It cause RM1.50 for per way per person…..Hahahhaa…. I went like “huh” at the tix counter, in my heart, that cheap??!! Am not complaining! Eh! We saw musholla (surau) there… YEAY!
We are soooo geared up for this trip. Oh! The train journey? Well…. a lot of locals for one, and if you are a tourist, you start out like a sore thumb! The train passed by small kampungs (villages), where you see people hop on and off a lot. It’s a old train, with all cushion seats just like those olden movies we’ve seen (notice the pic turn black and white or sephia…. Capturing the mooooooood konon). 1.5 hours quickly passed us by, finally AYUTTHAYA!!!!!!!!!!!!
Again, took a tuk tuk to our Baan Lotus Guesthouse recommended by my dearest friend Javier. Great recommendation, no regrets here. It kinda reminds me of One’s house (my aunt in Kedah), the beautiful thing is that it haave a hammock, a pond, even ducks and chicks, very authentic kampung feel. Room? VERY CLEAN! Very IMPORTANT! Location : Walking distance to backpacker street. PERFECT!
The owner (at least I think she is the owner) is an old nice lady whom speak minimal English and yet was very very helpful. She offered us a “travel package” that cost about RM20 for a sunset river tour, it was kinda interesting as we took small tongkang/sampan to go to temples by the river. BOY! You’ll be amazed on the quantity of temples located by the river.
A little bit about Ayutthaya. Ayutthaya is physically a river island city; meaning it stands on the wide and fertile plain of the Menam Chao Phraya at a point where the river forms a natural loop.
This amazing city is completely encircled by rivers, the Menam to the south and west, the Lopburi to the north and the Pasak to the east. A canal also links the Lopburi and the Menam, the effect being to create a most favorably situated island. Not only that, for more than 400 years, between 1350 and 1767, Ayutthaya was the capital of the Kingdom of Siam.
Feels like watching Anna and the King all over again huh! Should I look for the original movie? *smile*
Anyway, out first stop - Wat Panan Choeng. It’s an old monastery housing Thailand's largest ancient Buddha image, known as "Luang Po To".
Next is Wat Buddhai Sawan, an interesting place as this is the first time I see temples with many architecture influences from not just Thai but All the countries in Indo-China.
As we approaches sunset, the scenery was even more beautiful. I always think that dusk and dawn reflects Allah’s wonders. Nothing can be more perfect than this. *Speechless….*
Then we reached Wat Chaiwatthanaram that was constructed in 1630 by the king Prasat Thong as a memorial of his mother's resident in that area. The temple's name literally means the Temple of long reign and glorious era, designed in Khmer style.
As it approaches dusk, the boat auntie sent us to the night market square where we grab our dinner (there’s few Halal stall guess Muslim community is big here) and do a lil’ massage before heading back to our darling Baan Lotus. What a perfect way to end our first night in ancient Ayutthaya Kingdom.
No, not seaside but a DAM! And a DAMN huge one!
Credits : Planetware, Bangkok Site, Wikipedia