Nakhon Pathom Province

Nakhon Pathom is a small province located just 56 Kms. from Bangkok. The province features an ancient religious structure called “Phra Pathom Chedi”, the first religious landmark that signified the influx of Buddhism into Thailand. Nakhon Pathom is also renowned for its abundant fruits varieties and famous dishes.

Buddhamonthon

This is an old religious site built by the government and the people to commemorate the 2500th year of the existence of Buddhism.  Accessible by Phutthamonthon 4 Road, it occupies a large area with beautiful landscape and contains many interesting structures.  A huge standing Buddha image cast in bronze gold measuring 15.8 metres marks the centre of the area.  It is surrounded by four commemoratives sites concerning Lord Buddha’s birth enlightenment, the first preaching sermon, and Nirvana (death). Other interesting places include a Buddhist museum, a hall keeping marble Pali canon and meditation halls.

Phrabat Somdej Phra Monkut Klao Chaoyuhua Museum (Sanam Chan Palace)

Phrabat Somdej Phra Monkut Klao Chaoyuhua Museum (Sanam Chan Palace) Located in the town of Nakhon Pathom 2 Kms. west of Phra Pathom Chedi.  It occupies an area of about 888 Rais (about 355 acres).  The palace was constructed by command of King Rama VI in the year 1907 when he was the Crown Prince.  Phraya Silprasit supervised the construction which, in the beginning, there were two halls: Phra Thinang Phiman Pathom and Phra Thinang Aphirom Reudi, both halls were granted names on August 27, 1911.  Later, the Ratanasingh altar that was housed in Samakki Mukamat Hall was adorned with the royal umbrella on June 7, 1923.

The construction of this palace was inspired by the renovation of Phra Pathom Chedi which were to the satisfaction of King Rama VI.  The King saw that Nakhon Pathom was an ideal place for a leisurely stay due to the magnificent landscape.  Furthermore, King Rama VI also saw that Nakhon Pathom had the ideal terrain capable of deterring invasion by enemy forces using the river as their route.  This resembles to the Rattanakosin Era year 112 incident, whereby French troops anchored their battleships at the mouth of the Gulf of Thailand blocking the way out and King Rama VI did not want this kind of incident to be repeated.  He also intended to converted Sanam Chan Palace to be the heart of the second capital should a crisis again develop.  Sanam Chan Palace covers a vast area with a big court in the middle, surrounded by ring roads, with water canals on the outer perimeter.

Currently, part of Sanam Chan Palace is under the care and responsibility of Silpakorn University and Nakhon Pathom Province.  It is open to the public from Thursday to Sunday, 09.00-16.00.  Admission for Thais: an adult fee is 30 Baht, a child fee is 10 Baht.  Admission for foreigners is 50 Baht.  In case of a group visit, prior approval from Silpakorn Universityis required.  Contact can be made at Silpakorn University, Sanam Chan Palace, Nakhon Pathom, tel: 0 3424 4237, 0 3424 4236-7 Fax: 0 3424 4235

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Wat Rai Khing

Wat Rai Khing is located in Tambon Rai Khing 32 Kms. from Bangkok. It is a civilian monastery built in 1791. Somdej Phra Phuttha Chan (Pook) named this temple after the district. When construction was completed, the Buddha image was brought from Wat Sala Poon and enshrined here, later the locals named the image Luang Pho Wat Rai Khing. The Buddha image is in the attitude of Buddha Subduing Mara. The Buddha image is of Chiang Saen style and is assumed to have been built by Lanna Thai and Lan Chang craftsmen. According to legend, this Buddha image was found floating in the river, so the townspeople lifted the Buddha image out of the water and enshrined the image at Wat Sala Poon.

Prince Vachirayan Varoros granted temple the name of Wat Mongkol Chinda Ram (with the words Rai Khing in parenthesis after the name) but the locals call the temple Wat Mongkol Chinda Ram Rai Khing, later it was shorten to Wat Rai Khing. The temple is well known among Thais, faithful Buddhists frequently pay a visit to Wat Rai Khing to pay homage to the sacred Buddha image. Every Saturdays and Sundays, food and fruits are sold in front of the temple. This temple is also renowned for its natural fish sanctuary, a habitat of hundreds of thousands of Sawai fish (big catfish-like freshwater fishes). Visitors can buy bread here to feed the fish.

Additionally, there is a museum that collects and displays various kinds of artifacts including ancient bowls, mural paintings, and old books, all of which were donated by the townspeople.

Getting there: there are 3 ways: from the intersection in front of Pho Kaew Police Station, from the intersection in front of the Rose Garden, and from the intersection at Buddhamonthon 5 Road. For more information on the museum, contact tel: 0 3431 1384, 0 3432 3056.

The Rose Garden    

This tourist attraction is located on Petchakasem Road 32 Kms. from Bangkok. It is located adjacent to the Nakhon Chaisi River and occupies an area of 137.5 Rais (about 55 acres). There are a multitude of beautiful floral displays of great variety. Thai-style houses; parts of the area are hotel, lodges, and golf course. It also features an attractive Thai cultural show that commences daily in the afternoon. It is open daily from 08.00-18.00. An entrance fee to the garden is 10 Baht. Admission as well as shows fee cost 300 Baht for all. For more information call 0 2295 3261-4.

Getting there: there are two ways:

By Car: take Phetkasem Road, drive to Km.32 marker, a sign of the garden will be on the left;

By Bus: take a non-air conditioned bus line number 123 from Tha Chang, get off at the Rose Garden or take a bus from the Southern Bus Terminal (old route) on Petchakasem Road (Bangkok-Aom Yai-Sam Phran-Nakhon Pathom) or take a 2nd class air-conditioned bus of Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom, Bangkok-Ratchaburi, Bangkok-Bang Li lines or take a non air-conditioned bus of Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom, Bangkok-Ratchaburi, Bangkok-Suphan Buri lines.

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Don Wai Riverside Market

Don Wai Market, situated in Tambon Bang Kratuek. Behind the Don Wai temple is a market that still retains an appearance of a market dating back to King Rama VI period. The old building is made of wood and located on the banks of the Tha Chin River. Food vendors travel by boats to sell their goods here. Agricultural produce are sold daily from 07.00-18.00. Boats are available for rent for scenic river trips.

Getting there: you can get there via two routes:

1. From Bangkok, take the old Petkasem Road route, the entrance to Don Whai market is opposite the Elephant Show ground and Sam Phran Crocodile Farm. Take the route to Wat Rai Khing, when you reach the Wat Rai Khing, go on for another 10 Kms. passing also Wat Tha Put. Don Wai temple will be seen on the left.

2. From Pinklao-Nakhon Chaisi route (new route), take the Buddhamonthon V Road, there is a road sign to Wat Rai Khing, take that road, keep on going for another 4 Kms, you’ll see the second sign to Wat Rai Khing, turn right here and go on for another 4.5 Kms, then take a left turn at the T-intersection that leads to Don Whai Market, it will on your left-hand side.

Cruising along the Tha Chin River is available at Don Wai Market by riding a converted cargo boat and a passenger boat. There are 2 cruise lines: 1) from Wat Don Wai passing Wat Rai Khing, and Wang Pla. 2) from Wat Don Wai passing Wat Rai Khing, Wang Pla, Wat Sanphet, Wat Decha, the police cadet academy, and the Rose Garden.

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Thai Human Imagery Museum

Located at Km.31 Borom Ratchonnani Road on the way to Nakhon Pathom, the museum houses life-like sculptures created by a group of Thai artists. hese breathtaking human figures with various characteristics and the replicas of important people are displayed in many sections such as the Great Buddhist Monks, Former Kings of the Chakri Dynasty, and One Side of Thai Life.

Open : Weekdays from 9 a.m. – 5.30 p.m. Holidays from 8.30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Admission : 200 baht.
Tel : 0 3433 2109, 0 3433 2607, 0 3433 2061

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Ancient City of Kamphaeng Saen

This is an ancient town that is worth visiting.  It is located at Mu 5, Tambon Thung Kwang.  The ancient town dates back to the Dvaravati period and is believed be as old as Muang Nakhon Chaisi, but is smaller in size.  Situated 24 Kms. north of Nakhon Pathom town on Malaiman road, it can be reached by car.  At present, it is used as a Boy Scout’s camp.  The old town is believed to have been constructed by Nakhon Chaisi’s former rulers to control a trading route along canals and rivers to promote the town into a seaport-trading centre.  The development as well as the deterioration of the two towns must have been almost at the same time.  The interesting attractions of Ancient City of Kamphaeng Saen include unchanged ditches and earth dikes surrounding the ditches.  Within the Ancient City area, there are small earthern mounds, ponds, and large trees that are homes to various kinds of birds.

Kasetsart University, Kamphaeng Saen Campus (Botanical Garden)

It is located on Malaiman route or 21 Kms. from Nakhon Pathom town.  In the university compound, there are number of projects to educate farmers and the general public that include scaled-down projects such as an agricultural technology project, an irrigation system initiated along with the Royal project, an Entomological Park where various species of butterflies are housed, a pilot vegetable plantation plot, and Suan Saen Palm (garden of a hundred thousand palms), which collects various kinds of ornamental palms.  For more information contact Kasetsart University, Kamphaeng Saen Campus, Nakhon Pathom tel: 0 3428 1655, 0 3435 1400, 08 9522 7952, Fax: 0 3428 1655 or http://naetc.eto.kps.ku.ac.th.

Herbal Grove, Wat Plug Mai Lai

It is situated in Tambon Thung Khwang, 20 Kms. from Nakhon Pathom town on Malaiman road.  An entrance to the temple can be seen on the left.  More than 500 kinds of herbs abound in the grove which covers an area of 92 Rais (36.8 acres) and in a tranquil ambience.  The temple offers various natural therapies including traditional massage, herbal sauna, herbal food, and meditation.  For more information contact, Nakhon Pathom Sanitation Office tel: 0 3424 2029, 0 3425 1548 and Wat Plug Mai Lai tel:  0 3420 4044, 0 3420 4470.

Thai Soang village

It is located at Ban Ko Rad, Tambon Bang Pla, which is 9 Kms. south of Amphoe Bang Len, via the Bang Len-Don Toom route.  The village is home to Thai Soang or Thai Soang Dum (Thai Soang usually wear black dresses) or Lao Soang, who migrated from Ban Nong Prong, Amphoe Khao Yoi, Petchaburi, who have a distinct culture and tradition of their own.  The village also features interesting handicraft like weaving and rattan ware.

Wat Lampaya Floating Market

It is situated in front of Lampaya temple, on the Tha Cheen River.  The floating market was initiated by the Tambon Lampaya Cultural Council and Lampaya temple.  It is a centre of trade for fruits and vegetables as well as agricultural produces including rattan ware, woven cotton, dyed cotton, and inexpensive food.  Local food like noodles with beef, Thai desserts, and steamed curried fish patty, are sold by local vendors who do their trade in their boats.  In front of the temple is another haven for the various species of fish including big catfish-like fresh water fishes, black ear, and giant gourami.  The cruise services along Tha Cheen River are also available.  Several types of boats cater to the needs of the visitors, which include:

Ancient rowing boat: cruising along Tha Cheen River: leaving from Wat Lampaya, paying homage to Chao Mae Thabthim Shrine, the most revered shrine of Tambon Lampaya.  The trip costs 20 Baht/person.  It takes around 30 minutes;

Towed boat: a round trip along Tha Cheen River: departing from Wat Lampaya to Wat Sukvatanaram.  Feeding fish can be done in front of Wat Lampaya.  The trip costs 50 Baht/adult and 20 Baht/child.

Passenger boat: leaving from Wat Lampaya to Wat Bang Phra (Wat Luang Pho Pern). The trip takes two and a half hours.  An adult fee is 50 Baht, a child fee is 20 Baht.

This floating market is open only on Saturdays and Sundays, from 06.00-15.00.

Getting there: the market can be reached several ways:
By Car: 1) take the Pinklao-Nakhon Chaisi route, turn right onto a bridge that leads to Salaya, continue driving, passing Mahidol University, then take a left turn in front of Buddhamonthon District Office, and then take a right turn at Buddhamonthon Police Station for another 24 Kms.  Wat Lampaya is on the left.  The trip takes around 45 minutes;
2) taking the Bangbuathong route, keep going for about 10 Kms., look for a sign that points to Bang Len, take a left turn there and proceed for 20 Kms., at the next intersection (before reaching the bridge crossing the Tha Cheen River), take a left turn and keep going for another 9 Kms.  Wat Lampaya will be seen on the right.
By Bus: the Transport Company operates a Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom bus.  Get off at Nakhon Pathom Market and then take a Song Taew (public pick-up truck) of Nakhon Pathom-Lampaya line, and get off at Wat Lampaya.  Take a Song Taew, route Lampaya-Thung-Noi, from a market in Nakhon Pathom town and get off at Wat Lampaya.

There are also mini-van services available from the Southern Bus Terminal, near Kung Luang Restaurant.  The van leaves every 30 minutes, from 05.00-18.00.  A one-way fare is 40 Baht.  For more information contact Wat Lampaya, Tambon Lampaya Cultural Council tel: 0 3439 1626, 0 3439 1985, 0 3439 2022.

Fish Sanctuary

Fish Sanctuary, located at Mu 1, Tambon Haui Plu.  The place is a natural fish sanctuary, which is the habitat of various species of fish typical to the Tha Cheen River.  The Fish Sanctuary can be reached via an access road 11 Kms. from the intersection at Nakhon Chaisi District Office.

Thai Farmers’ Lifestyle Museum

It is a house of Uncle Reungchai and Aunt Payom Chamniyom.  It is located at Ban Lan Laem, Mu 4, Tambon Wat Lamud.  The house-cum- museum displays equipment, utensils, and tools, used in rice farming.  Also within the house compound is a handicraft-training centre that trains townspeople to make various products from Water Hyacinth (Pak Tob Chawa).
To visit, please contact tel: 034 296-086 in advance.

Wat Klang Bang Kaew

It is an old temple located in Tambon Nakhon Chaisi.  The temple houses a chapel, a vihara, and a principal Buddha image, all of which are very old and assumed, archaeologically, to have been built in the Ayutthaya period.  There is a Phra Phuttha Vithinayok museum, exhibiting historical remains, artefacts, as well as utensils of the late monks: Luang Poo Boon (Phra Phuttha Vithinayok Boon Kanthachoti) and Luang Poo Perm (Phra Phuttha Vithinayok Perm Punyavasano).  Various Buddha images, amulets, and sacred talismans of both late monks are also on display.  On another side of the museum, Thai medicines, herbs, and utensils of craftsmen are displayed.  It is open on Saturdays and Sundays, and national gazette holidays from 09.00-16.00.  For more information, call: 0 3433 1462, 0 3433 2182.

Misiem Yip Intsoi Arts Garden

It is located at 38/9, Buddha-monthon VII Road.  The entrance is opposite Rajavidhyalai College for which you have to go in another one kilometre.  The Garden houses masterpieces of arts created by Madam Misiem Yip Intsoi for educational purposes.  It is also available for organizing temporary exhibitions in an out-door gallery style and open-air art gallery for artists to exhibit their works.  For more information, call 0 2213 2027.

Open Study Centre or College in the Palace

Open Study Centre or College in the Palace, located alongside Salaya-Bang Phasi Road, Tambon Salaya.  The centre mobilises an ancient school of Thai arts called “Chang Sib Mu” or “The Ten Master Crafts”, the Thai arts that stem from local wisdom and expertise that Thais managed to retain from their forefathers.  “Chang Sib Mu” means a group of craftsmen who creates art in the ancient Thai style by hand, such as: painting, carving, mould-casting, plastering, casting, puppet mastering, lathe mastering, upholstering, etc.  The centre exhibits pieces of works of made by students of arts.  Souvenirs made by the students are also on sale.  For more information, please contact tel: 0 2431 3623, Fax: 02431 3624 or http://www.nfe.go.th/0415

Neun Phra or Neun Yai Hom

It is located in Tambon Don Yai Hom.  Take the Petchakasem Road from Nakhon Pathom heading into Bangkok for about 5 Kms., you will arrive at a T-intersection, turn right onto Settakit 2 Road (Ban Paew-Don Yai Hom Road) and proceed for about 9 Kms., Neun Yai Hom is on your left and another 150 metres into a side road, located in the middle of the rice fields.  Amphoe Ban Paew is an ancient site.  In 1936, Phra Dhamma Vathi Kanachan (Luang Pho Ngeun), the abbot of Wat Don Yai Hom, dug up broken bricks from the base of the hill to build a church.  Digging down further, he found two square green laterite pillars both about 4 metres high with a unique carving at the crown of the pillars that resembled pillar doors of the Sanchi Chedi of King Asoka Maharaj, and a laterite statue of a crouching deer, another Dvaravati period Buddha image, and a broken stone Sema Dhamma Chakra (Buddhist Wheel of Virtue used signify temple boundaries).  The laterite stone pillars had a gap at the top for placing the Sema Dhama Chakra.  This is the same style as those found at Phra Pathom Chedi, Wat Phra Ngam, Wat Phra Padhone, and Sanam Chan Palace.  Presently, the pillars are at Wat Don Yai Hom, the laterite crouching deer and the Buddha images are on exhibit at the Bangkok National Museum.  These discoveries confirm that this area was once an ancient temple and that the hill must have been a large Chedi that was in the temple compound dating back to the Dvaravati period, or earlier, roughly about 1,000 years ago.  It is a revered and important historical site.

Phra Padhone Chedi

Another historical site located in Wat Phra Padhone Chedi temple, Tambon Phra Padhone.  It is located 2 Kms. to the east of Phra Pathom Chedi down Petchakasem Road.  The former shape of Phra Padhone Chedi was an upside down bell like other Chedi that was built in Dvaravati period.  As Wat Phra Padhone Chedi is located in the middle of the ancient city of Nakhon Chaisi thus several artefacts were discovered during excavations.  Some of the discovered items include Buddha images, heads of Buddha images and Buddha images in terra cotta, as well as a bronze figure of a garuda gripping naga under it’s claws, which is the official symbol of King Rama VI.

Neun Dhamma Sala

It is located at Dhamma Sala temple, Tambon Dhamma Sala, 6 Kms. to the east of Phra Pathom Chedi, on the South-side of Petchakasem Road.  The physical appearance is that of a hill with a tunnel opening that is believed to connect Wat Phra Mayn to Wat Dhamma Sala.  From hearsay, there are various valuable treasures like ancient pottery but which may not be taken out because there is a treasure guardian spirit watching over.

Neun Wat Phra Ngam 

Situated at Phra Ngam temple, Tambon Nakhon Pathom, near Nakhon Pathom Railway Station.  At this temple, during excavations, a large Chedi dating from Dvaravati era and artefacts including dilapidated sandstone Buddha images, Sema Dhama Chakra (Buddhist Wheel of Virtue used signify temple boundaries), statues of crouching deer, bronze Buddha images, and earthen Buddha images, which were made with unsurpassed craftsmanship.  Prince Damrong Rachanuphab explained that the origin of the name “Wat Phra Ngam” (temple of magnificent Buddha images) was due to the beauty of the discovered earthen Buddha images, the temple was given such name.  Some of them are housed at the National Museum and others at Phra Pathom Chedi.  All of the discovered artefacts dates back to the Dvaravati period, which are the same age as those found around Phra Pathom Chedi.

Nakhon Pathom Palace

It is located to the east and not far from Wat Phra Pathom Chedi.  At present, it houses the Nakhon Pathom Municipality.  Prince Damrong Rachanuphab mentioned the reason for building this palace in the book “Tamnaan Wang Gao” (or Tales of the Old Palaces) that during the renovation of Phra Pathom Chedi, it was inconvenient to come and go from Bangkok to Nakhon Pathom within a day, thus staying overnight was obligatory.  Under the royal command of King Rama IV, the palace was built near the Phra Pathom Chedi, similar in concept to those palaces in the Ayutthaya period whereby the King commanded that a palace be built on the perimeter of the temple housing the Phra Buddhabat (Buddha’s Foot Print).  The palace was given the name “Phra Nakhon Pathom” and the canals of Mahasawas and Chedi Bucha were dug to facilitate commuting by boat between Bangkok and Nakhon Pathom.

Kasetsart Uninversity, Kamphaeng Saen Campus (Botanical Garden)

Kasetsart University, Kamphaeng Saen Campus (Botanical Garden), located on Malaimaen route or 21 Kms. from Nakhon Pathom town. In the university compound, there are number of projects to educate farmers and the general public that include scaled-down projects such as an agricultural technology project, an irrigation system initiated along with the Royal project, an Entomological Park where various species of butterflies are housed, a pilot vegetable plantation plot, and Suan Saen Palm (garden of a hundred thousand palms), which collects various kinds of ornamental palms. For more information contact Kasetsart University, Kamphaeng Saen Campus, Nakhon Pathom tel: 0 2942 8010 ext. 3104.

Wat Lamphaya Floating Market

Wat Lamphaya Floating Market, situated in front of Lamphaya temple, on the Tha Chin River. The floating market was initiated by the Tambon Lamphaya Cultural Council and Lamphaya temple. It is a centre of trade for fruits and vegetables as well as agricultural produces including rattan ware, woven cotton, dyed cotton, and inexpensive food. Local food like noodles with beef, Thai desserts, and steamed curried fish patty, are sold by local vendors who do their trade in their boats. In front of the temple is another haven for the various species of fish including big catfish-like fresh water fishes, black ear, and giant gourami. The cruise services along Tha Cheen River are also available. Several types of boats cater to the needs of the visitors, which include:

Ancient rowing boat : cruising along Tha Chin River: leaving from Wat Lamphaya, paying homage to Chao Mae Thapthim Shrine, the most revered shrine of Tambon Lamphaya. The trip costs 20 Baht/person. It takes around 30 minutes;

Towed boat: a round trip along Tha Chin River: departing from Wat Lamphaya to Wat Sukvatanaram. Feeding fish can be done in front of Wat Lamphaya. The trip costs 50 Baht/adult and 20 Baht/child.

Passenger boat: leaving from Wat Lampaya to Wat Bang Phra (Wat Luang Pho Poen). The trip takes two and a half hours. An adult fee is 50 Baht, a child fee is 20 Baht.

This floating market is open only on Saturdays and Sundays, from 06.00-15.00.

Getting there: the market can be reached several ways:

By Car:

1) take the Pinklao-Nakhon Chaisi route, turn right onto a bridge that leads to Salaya, continue driving, passing Mahidol University, then take a left turn in front of Buddhamonthon District Office, and then take a right turn at Buddhamonthon Police Station for another 24 Kms. Wat Lampaya is on the left. The trip takes around 45 minutes;

2) taking the Bang Bua Thong route, keep going for about 10 Kms., look for a sign that points to Bang Len, take a left turn there and proceed for 20 Kms., at the next intersection (before reaching the bridge crossing the Tha Chin River), take a left turn and keep going for another 9 Kms. Wat Lamphaya will be seen on the right.

By Bus: the Transport Company operates a Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom bus. Get off at Nakhon Pathom Market and then take a Song Thaeo (public pick-up truck) of Nakhon Pathom-Lamphaya line, and get off at Wat Lampaya. Take a Song Thaeo, route Lamphaya-Thung-Noi, from a market in Nakhon Pathom town and get off at Wat Lamphaya.

There are also mini-van services available from the Southern Bus Terminal, near Kung Luang Restaurant. The van leaves every 30 minutes, from 05.00-18.00. A one-way fare is 40 Baht. For more information contact Wat Lamphaya, Tambon Lamphaya Cultural Council tel: 0 3439 1626, 0 3439 1985, 0 3439 2022.

Phra Pathom Chedi

Phra Pathom Chedi, the largest pagoda in Thailand. Phra Pathom Chedi is the official provincial symbol of Nakhon Pathom.

The present Phra Pathom Chedi was built during the reign of King Rama IV in 1853, under his royal command, the new Chedi was constructed to cover the former Chedi of which the shape was of an upside down bell shape with a Prang top. It is assumed that the former Chedi dates back to the year 539 AD due to the fact that the upside down bell shaped Chedi has a similar style to the Sanchi Chedi in India which was built in the reign of King Asoka. The construction of the new huge Chedi was completed in the reign of King Rama V in 1870 AD. In all, it took 17 years to build.

The completed Chedi is a circular one that features an upside down bell shape Chedi (Lankan style). The height from ground to a top crown is some 120.45 metres, and a total diameter at the base is 233.50 metres. The sacred Chedi houses Lord Buddhas relics. During the reign of King Rama VI, Wat Phra Pathom was renovated and later the temple became the royal temple of King Rama VI. Within the monastery compound, there are various interesting historical items, including the Phra Ruang Rodjanarith , an image of Buddha bestowing pardon, is enshrined in a vihara located to the North and in front of Phra Pathom Chedi. The casting of this Buddha image was casted during the reign of King Rama VI: the images head, hand, and feet were brought from Muang Srisatchanalai, Sukhothai.

Under royal command, a wax sculpture of the Buddha image was moulded. The casting process was held at Wat Phra Chettuphon in 1913. Later, the Buddha image was enshrined in the vihara, located on the north side at the top of a huge staircase. The King granted the name of Phra Rung Rodjanarith Sri-intharathit Thammamopas Mahavachiravuth Rachpuchaniyabopitr to this Buddha image. At its base, the relics of King Rama VI are housed. Additionally, there are:

Wat Phra Pathom Chedi Museum The museum is located at a lower level in the east of the church. It houses artefacts and historical remains which were discovered during the excavations in Nakhon Pathom including the coffin and funeral ritual set that were used in Ya-Leis cremation ceremony. Ya-Lei was a dog very dear to King Rama VI, that was shot and died. The King was much saddened and commanded to building of a monument for Ya-Lei as a token of his grief. The museum is open daily from 09.00-16.30 except Monday and Tuesday.

Then there is the National Museum of Phra Pathom Chedi This is also worth a visit. The National Museum of Phra Pathom Chedi is located to the south of the Pathom Chedi compound. It is a 2 storey modern Thai building that houses artefacts and historical remains, most of which dates back to Dvaravati period and were found during excavations in Nakhon Pathom. For more information, contact Phra Pathom Chedi Treasury and Preservation Office tel: 0 3427 0300, 0 3424 2500, Fax: 0 3424 2500. The museum is open daily from 09.00-16.00 except Monday, Tuesday and National Gazette holidays. The admission fee is 30 baht.

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Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo   

Smphran Elephant Ground & Zoo, located on the Phetkasem Road at Km.30 marker, 1 kilometre before the Rose Garden. It occupies an area of 130 Rais (about 52 acres). There are various kinds of animals on display and show. There are daily elephant shows, elephant ride around the compound, elephant musical shows, crocodile-wrestling shows, and magic shows.

Getting there:

By Car:
1. drive on Phetkasem Road to km.30, the Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo sign will be on the left
2. drive on Pinklao – Nakhon Chai Si Road, then turn left onto Phutthamonthon 4 Road, and continue for 5 kilometres

By Bus: take a regular bus line number 123 from Tha Chang, get off at the Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo or take a bus from the Southern Bus Terminal (old route) on Petchakasem Road (Bangkok-Aom Yai-Sam Phran-Nakhon Pathom) or take a 2nd class air-conditioned bus of Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom, Bangkok-Ratchaburi, Bangkok-Bang Li lines or take the non air-conditioned buses of Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom, Bangkok-Ratchaburi, Bangkok-Suphanburi lines.

Open : Daily from 8 a.m. – 5.30 p.m.
Admission : Adult 500 baht, Child 300 baht.
Tel : 0 2295 2938-9, 0 3431 1971, 0 2429 0361-2
www.elephantshow.com

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Wat Phra Mayn

It is situated at Ananta Uttayan Park, Tambon Huai Chorakae, to the south of Phra Pathom Chedi.  It is an abandoned temple that nowadays resemble a large hill.  Also discovered here are other artefacts which include bronze Buddha images as well as arms, thighs, and hands from a laterite Buddha image, Yaksa Deva (Thai mythical giant gods), Lotus Lion Deva, and stucco reliefs from the stupa ruins.  At present, they are exhibited at the Bangkok National Museum and Wat Phra Pathom Chedi.  During the reign of King Rama VI, Prince Damrong Rachanupap brought two large pairs of the Buddha’s Foot Print replica from Wat Phra Men and placed them on an outside corridor of Phra Pathom Chedi.  During an excavation by the Fine Arts Department and the French archaeologists in 1938, remains which resembles an enormous stupa were discovered.  It was a square-based stupa with very high-indented corners; the remains themselves were 12 metres high, with arched windows on four sides within which each houses a sitting laterite Buddha image.  Later, the Buddha images were enshrined at Wat Phra Pathom Chedi.  It is believed that these laterite Buddha images date back to the Dvaravati period, the same period as Phra Pathom Chedi, which is no less than 1,000 years old.

Sireeuchachati Herb Garden

Situated in the Mahidol University, Salaya Campus, Nakhon Pathom Province, the Sireeruckachati  Herb Garden serves as a collection and conservation center for study and research of medicinal plants available in Thailand. Within an area of 4 acres, plants are grown in grasshouses, decorative gardens and forest gardens.  Each plant is accompanied by its names and usage.  The garden is opened daily to public from 7.00 am. to 5.30 pm. For group tour that needs a tour guide, please contact: “The Committee on Growing Medicinal Plant Project; Faculty of Pharmacy, 447 Si Ayutthaya Road, Bangkok 10400; call 0-2644-8696 or visit www.pharmacy.mahidol.ac.th

Car

By Car : From Bangkok, driving on the old route of Petchakasem Road (Highway No.4) passing Aom Noi, Aom Yai, Sam Phran to Nakhon Pathom or driving on a new route from Bangkok, passing Buddhamonthon, Nakhon Chaisi to Nakhon Pathom.

Bus

By Bus : From the Southern Bus Terminal on Boromrajajonnani Road there are two lines of buses.

Old Route (Bangkok-Aom Yai-Sam Phran-Nakhon Pathom), there are several lines of 2nd class air-conditioned buses: Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom, Bangkok-Ratchaburi, and Bangkok-Bangli. There are 2 lines of non air-conditioned buses: Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom, Bangkok-Ratchaburi, and Bangkok-Suphanburi.

New Route (Bangkok-Buddhamonthon-Nakhon Chaisi-Nakhon Pathom)

There are 2 lines of 1st class air-conditioned buses: Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom and Bangkok Dan Chang (blue bus) or taking the 2nd class of air-conditioned buses of Bangkok-Damnoen Saduak and Bangkok-Ratchaburi.

For more information, contact the Southern Bus Terminal on Boromrajajonnani Road. Non air-conditioned buses tel: 0 2434 5557-8 and Air-conditioned buses tel: 0 2435 1199.

Train

By Rail: The State Railway of Thailand operates daily trains to Nakhon Pathom. For more information contact Bangkoks Hualampong Railway Grand Station tel: 1690, 0 2223 7010, 0 2223 7020 and the Thonburi Railway Station tel: 0 2411 3102.