Former capital of the Kingdom of Siam is some 50 miles from Bangkok so that makes it a perfect one day trip.

Our plan was to get up, have breakfast and use the public transportation to Mo Chit station, where mini vans commute to Ayutthaya and back. We would use bikes around Ayutthaya and make our own way around it. Simple as that, right?

Well, no.

If you haven’t got the picture, traffic in Bangkok is hell. And public transport is the 9th circle of that same hell. Getting out of the city takes hours. And nerves. I lost all of that before even getting to Ayutthaya. 😱

Traffic map

According to Google maps, near our accommodation there was a stop for a bus going directly to Mo Chit. Wrong. No such lines were driving through, so we had to proceed to a Victory monument roundabout to get a bus, which was around 15 minutes by foot. 🚶‍♀️

The infamous Victory Monument roundabout in Bankgkok. Spot the cars. Not a single bad one. Or old one. We saw bunch of Toyotas, Mazdas, Hyndais, few Fords

After another 15 minutes of waiting, finally the bus arrives, we get on, the ticket lady comes and we say our destination. Wrong. We sat on a right bus going the wrong direction.

Get off. ⏳

Try to find the right station on a huge roundabout where everything is going the opposite direction than we are used to. 🤯🤬

Another 15 minutes passes, the bus is no where to be found, so we decide to grab a Grab. After 15 minutes the car arrives, but we don’t know how to reach it because it’s on a f**** roundabout. So we ditch the Grab, and move to less crowded street to grab yet another Grab. 15 minutes after we are in the car, heading to Mo Chit. It took us an hour and 45 minutes just to get moving!!!! I was on a verge of crying and Debeli wanted to kill someone. Worst traffic experience ever. But it was not over yet.

Mo Chit mini vans

Once we got to Mo Chit, finding the mini van was pretty easy. Sort of. Because our Grab left us on the other side of the street, with no clear signage where the mini vans were.

The tickets

The mini van ride to Ayutthaya was smooth(er) than getting out of the city but once we finally got there, we were surrounded by several tut tuk drivers that wanted us to buy their services. Since we arrived around 2.30 pm and the temples are working for another 3 hours, we didn’t have much choice but to eat something first and negotiate our 2 hour drive to see 3 temples. That was my plan B, since the original plan failed.

We are in a tuk tuk

The 2 hour drive was 500 bht (15$), instead of 600 bht (19$). Yeah, we bargained for 4 bucks, which is silly, looking at now, but that’s a whole lot food to eat in Ayutthaya 😋

The thing in Thailand is, you have to be prepared. You have to know where you’re going, how much is going to cost you, the opening hours of the place you’re heading to, because if you come out of the blue, someone is going to use that. On your expense.


The historical city of Ayutthaya was the capital of Kingdom of Siam for more than 400 years; until it’s destruction by the Burmese in the 18th century.

The city grew to be one of the world’s largest and most cosmopolitan urban areas and a center of global diplomacy and commerce. In 1700 it had a population of a million people, double the population of London and Paris.

Ayutthaya was strategically located on an island surrounded by three rivers connecting the city to the sea.

This site was located above the tidal bore of the Gulf of Siam that prevented possible attacks from the sea, but also helped to protect the city from seasonal flooding.

The city was ideally situated at the head of the Gulf of Siam, on a path between India and China and well upstream to be protected from Arab and European powers who were expanding their influence in the region. It became a center of economics and trade at the regional and global levels, and an important connecting point between the East and the West.

Ambassadors from Europe, China and Japan visited the Royal court, and a lot of foreigners served in the employ of the government and lived in the city as private individuals. Thanks to them, foreign influences can still be seen in the surviving art and in the architectural ruins.

Some of the earliest temples, like Wat Maha That, build in 1374. resembles the Khmer style temples. They were made from laterite (a soil and rock type rich in iron and aluminium) and brick with rich stucco decorations.

Wat Maha That consisted of a large central prang surrounded by four smaller prangs, situated in the corners, of a raised square platform.

The platform was surrounded by a courtyard and a roofed gallery, lined with a row of Buddha images.

The Buddha’s head entwined within the roots of a tree is one of the most recognizable images from Thailand.

One theory suggests that the tree simply grew around the Buddha head, that fell of from the statue, during the period when the temple laid abandoned and overgrown. Another theory is that a thief moved the Buddha head away from the main temple to hide it.

The biggest and the holiest of the temples, that served as a model for Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok, is Wat Phra Si Sanphet.

The entrance fee was around 50 bht for each temple

It was build in the late 14th century, in a place where the royal palace used to be, as a burial spot for the Kings.

The original chedis with the king’s ashes were destroyed by the Burmese and reconstructed back in the 1956.

Wat Phra Si Sanpet was used exclusively for royal ceremonies as it belonged to the royal family and no monks lived here.

The chedis are built in the classic, Ceylonese design that is reminiscent of a bell. In every direction small chapels were reachable by steep stairs. The roofs of the chapels are in turn topped with a miniature chedi.

Wat Chaiwatthanaram, located on the other side of the river, outside the old town on the island, is the youngest of the temples that we visited in Ayutthaya. King Prasat Thong built the temple in 1630 to commemorate his momma 😍

The central prang, in Khmer style, is 35 meters high and the central platform is surrounded by eight chapels.

There were once 120 Buddhist gilded sculptures on the wall.

All the chapels were decorated in a different way, but the interior in general was painted, while the exteriors were decorated with reliefs depicting the scenes from the Buddha’s life.

After the war with Burma at the end of the 18th century, Ayutthaya ceased to be the capital city and fell into oblivion. The temples were robbed and left to decay.

Slowly, the city recovered so it could function normally, and the ruins, listed by UNESCO in 1991, attract hundreds of tourists today.

Majority of the monasteries are abandoned although there are several still working. They have to have at least three monks to keep working.

If you ever find yourself close to Ayutthaya, don’t miss the visit to the Old Town. But make it a whole day visit. Don’t make the same mistake we did. And stay until the sun sets down. It will light the temples in the most beautiful way possible.

The Reclining Budhha



Nekadašnji glavni grad Sijamskog kraljevstva, grad Ayutthaya, smješten je samo 80ak kilometara od Bangkoka, pa se činio savršenim izgovorom za jednodnevni izlet.

Plan je bio javnim prijevozom, ležerno kad se razbudimo i doručkujemo, otići do Mo Chit terminala odakle, svako malo, voze mini busevi do Ayutthaye, unajmit bicikle i provozat se po starom gradu. Prilično jednostavno, zar ne? Zapravo jest, ako ne radite iste greške kao i mi. No, vratimo se na početak.

Ako niste shvatili iz teksta o Bangkoku, gradski promet je ka-ta-stro-fa-lan! A javni prijevoz, još gori. Za izaći iz grada trebaju vam sati i živci. Negdje taj dan ostali smo i bez toga.

Google maps aplikacija pokazivala je autobusnu stanicu za Mo Chit u neposrednoj blizini našeg smještaja (Mo Chit je nešto tipa Črnomerec), pa smo mi naivni i blesavi odlučiti koristi javni prijevoz. Greška br. 1.

Bus uopće ne staje na našoj stanici, nego par stanica dalje, na velikom kružnom toku kod Victory monumenta, nekih 15ak minuta od nas. Super. Idemo tamo. Usput kupili neko voće, navratila u trgovački centar na toalet i stali čekati bus za Mo Chit. Nakon 15ak minuta evo i busa.

Ježila sam se od ovog kružnog toka

Ulazimo u krcati bus, krećemo i kondukterka dolazi do nas naplatiti nam karte. Na mapi joj pokažemo kud idemo, a ona se krene ispričavati. ”Soooli”, veli ona. Kaj soli? Kakav soli? Krivi bus? ”Soooli” Ne vozi tamo? ”Soooli, bus go Pratunam” Krivi smjer. Greška br. 2.

Izađemo iz busa i krenemo tražit pravu stanicu. Imajte na umu da su stanice na ogromnom kružnom toku, da se vozi u kontra smjeru i da generalno ne znate s koje strane bus dolazi i u kojem smjeru ide. Negdje kad smo drugi put trebali prijeći cestu preko nadvožnjaka, odlučili smo uzeti Grab do Mo Chita. Greška br 3. Grab je stao negdje na kružnom toku i čeka nas, a mi ne znamo u kojem smjeru do njega. Otkazujemo ovaj Grab, mičemo se u susjednu, manje prometnu ulicu i naručujemo drugi Grab. Vrijeme teče. Mi se punih sat i 45 minuta pokušavamo maknuti sa svoje početne točke. Debeli kulira, ali zapravo bi nekoga razbio. Ja sam na rubu suza. Grab konačno stiže i mi smo na putu za Mo Chit. Samo 20 minuta do tamo. I još samo sat vremena vožnje do Ayutthaye. Pitam se što mi je ovo trebalo. 😭

Ayutthaya. Molim vas obratite pažnju na ove kvalitetne automobile; ekipa živi u ruševinama, a svi voze novu Toyotu, Hyundai, Mazdu…..ima se, može se

U Ayutthayu smo, konačno, stigli oko pol 3. Hramovi su otvoreni do 6. Najam bicikala za samostalnu vožnju i istraživanje otpada u startu, prepušteni smo na milost i nemilost tuk tuk vozača koji vas napadnu čim izađete iz vozila i doslovce vas vuku za ruku. U Tajlandu morate biti ekstremno pažljivi i odlučni kad su u pitanju nametljivi vozači/prodavači/krojači/konobari….
Morate imati plan. Znati kud idete i kako tamo idete. Znati radno vrijeme ustanove i cijene. Jer ako ne znate, lako će vas preveslati.

Sreća u nesreći, ja sam znala koje hramove želim vidjeti, pa se Debeli cjenkao, jer ja ne znam, za 2 sata vožnje tuk tukom i tri hrama. 500 bht, umjesto 600 bht. Sad kad pogledam cjenkali smo se 20 hrk. Al znate koliko se ražnjića može pojest za dvaest kuna u Ayutthayi? 😋

Povijesni grad Ayutthaya bio je glavni grad Siamskog kraljevstva punih 400 godina; od utemeljenja sredinom 14. stoljeća do 1767. kad su ga razorili Burmejci.

Grad je ubrzo postao trgovačko središte i sjedište svjetske diplomacije, a pretpostavlja se da je grad brojio gotovo milijun stanovnika oko 1700. godine. Samo za usporedbu, Pariz i London su isto vrijeme imali oko 600 000 stanovnika.

Strateški smješten između tri rijeke koje su ga povezivale s morem, grad je imao čvrsto obrambeno uporište, a zahvaljujući naprednom odvodnom sustavu, Ayutthaya je bila sigurna i od sezonskih poplava.

Smješten na otoku između tri rijeke grad je prozvan Venecijom Istoka

Na sigurnoj udaljenosti od susjednih zemalja, a na pola puta između Kine i Indije, Ayutthaya je postala ekonomski, trgovački i kulturni centar kraljevstva i glavno sjecište Istoka i Zapada.

Brojni europski ambasadori kao i predstavnici Japana i Kine posjećivali su Ayutthayu, čemu svjedoče brojne rezidencije građene u europskom ili istočnoazijskom stilu.

Ostaci palača i budističkih samostana, poput Wat Mahathat ili Wat Phra Si Sanphet, svjedoče o ekonomskoj važnosti i tehnološkim mogućnostima koje su imali Ayutthayini graditelji.

Hramovi iz ranijeg razdoblja Ayutthayinog utemeljenja rađeni su po uzoru na Khmerski stil samostana, a građeni su od laterita (vrsta tla bogata željezom) i cigli te ukrađeni štuko dekoracijama.

Wat Maha That, sagrađen 1374. godine (samo za usporedbu, gotika je u punom zamahu u Europi, a Boccaccio je mrtav već godinu dana :)) sastojao se od velikog središnjeg tornja (pranga), okruženog istim takvima, ali manjim, na sve četiri strane.

Temelj na kojem je stajao prang (quincunx) bio je okružen dvorištem i natkrivenom galerijom s Buddhinim skulpturama poredanim uokolo

Buddhina glava u korijenju vjerojatno je najposjećeniji dio cijelog hrama.

Jedna priča kaže da je glava otpala sa skulpture koja je stajala pored drveta čije ju je korijenje obraslo, dok druga teorija spominje lopova koji je dragocjenu glavu Buddhe sakrio među obraslo korijenje.

Wat Phra Si Sanphet, najveći i najsvetiji hram antičke Ayutthaye, isprva je stajao na mjestu kraljevske palače, da bi nakon nekoliko kraljevskih vladavina hram postao grobno mjesto.

Khedi ili stupe, mjesto gdje se pohranjivao pokojnikov pepeo, uništeni su u ratu s Burmom te rekonstruirani 1956.

Wat Phra Si Sanpet pripadao je isključivo kraljevskoj obitelji i ni jedan redovnik nije živio u hramu. Koristio se samo za kraljevske ceremonije.

Khedi su građeni u klasičnom cejlonskom stilu, a neodoljivo podsjećaju na zvono.

Stepenicama se dolazilo do malih kapela koje su također urešene minijaturnim zvonolikim elementima.

Najmlađi od hramova koje smo posjetili, Wat Chaiwatthanaram, nalazi se s druge strane rijeke, van starog grada na otoku.

Hram je dao sagraditi kralj Prasat Thong 1630. godine u spomen na svoju majku. Naravno.

Središnji prang građen u Kmerskom stilu visok je 35 metara, a središna platforma okružena je s osam khedi kapelica.

Na zidu je nekoć stajalo 120 Buddhinih pozlaćenih skulptura.

Sve kapelice bile su uređene na drugačiji način, ali generalno unutrašnjost je bila obložena slikama, dok su izvana bile urešene reljefima koji su prikazivali scene iz Buddhina života.

Nakon rata s Burmom, krajem 18. stoljeća, Ayutthaya je prestala biti glavni grad i pala je u zaborav. Hramovi su opljačkani i ostavljeni na nemilost vremenskim prilikama.

S vremenom se grad oporavio, barem do te mjere da može normalno funkcionirati, a ruševine, koje je UNESCO 1991. stavio na svoj popis zaštićene baštine, danas privlače brojne turiste.

Većina samostana je napuštena iako ima nekoliko s barem tri redovnika, što je najmanja brojka da samostan može funkcionirati.

Ako se ikad nađete u blizini Ayutthaye, svakako vam preporučam posjet. Ali cjelodnevni. Nemojte ponoviti našu grešku. I ostanite tamo do kasnog popodneva, jer tad crvena i narančasta boja ruševina dolaze do punog sjaja.

Ležeći Buddha

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