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วันอังคารที่ 2 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2557

Activities to do at Krabi’s attractions

Canoeing : Enjoy the breathtaking beauty of interesting rock formations by getting close up in an environmentally friendly voyage among the mangroves, caves and limestone massifs of Ao Tha Lane Bay and Koh Hong.

Rock-Climbing : Krabi’s strange and beautiful limestone cliffs have become popular rock and mountain  climbing attractions for adventurers from around the world.

Bird watching : Bird watching is especially good from January till April in the mangrove forests surrounding Kanab Nam Hill near Krabi Town. Rare birds can be spotted in this place.

Diving : Krabi’s waters are great for snorkeling and scuba diving. Popular spots are at Koh Porde, Koh Hong. Koh Yung, Koh Phi Phi Lay, Hin Muang and Hin Dang Reefs, Kho Rok and Koh Ngai.
Kayaking : This activity can be done either through mangrove forest at Ao Tha Lane, or in the sea around the group of koh Hong islands

Wat Pho

This is possibly the most interesting temple in Thailand as it combines history, medical science and is a center for meditaion and traditional massage training. Its official name is Wat Phrachetuphon Vimon Mangkararam Ratchaworamahawihan, although it is commonly called Wat Po.

Founded during the 16th century, Wat Pho is most famous for the golden reclining Buddha that measues 46 metres and has feet inlaid with mother-of pearl. This is the main attraction that draws visitors to the temple. In more modern times, Wat Pho has gained international recognition as a meditation centre and for the traditional Thai massage that is both practiced and taught here.

Traditionally, temples were the schools as there was no formal education system, with monks providing basic lesson in both spiritual and secular subjects. King Rama III turned Wat Po into a major centre for learning in botany, geography and history.

Bas reliefs around one of the main buildings depict the story of the Ramakian which is the Thai adaption of the Indian Ramayana.

For those interested in traditional Thai medicine, there is a pavilion that serves to both impart knowledge and provide treatment. The walls have marble tablets describing basic anatomy and treatments. In the late afternoon, traditional medicine practitioners are there to dispense herbal mixtures. Nearby, there is a cloister where you can have a traditional Thai massage for a very small payment.

** In  2008, the historic marble inscriptions in Wat Pho have been registered with UNESCO’s Memory of the World (MOW) as MOW documentary heritage for Asia and Pacific Region

A day to discover the city’s hidden charm

I left my home, which is located on Sathupradit Road, late in the morning to being my journey. It was a kind of journey I haven’t taken for long time, that is, exposing myself to the hidden attraction in Bangkok. I paid 8 Bath for a ride on bus No.35 to the end of its route at Siripong Road. I kept walking along the row of old shop house buildings to the end of the street. Turning right to a small side street (called “Soi” among Thai people), I saw a sign saying “Wat Suthad Temple.” At first I wasn’t really sure if I was in the right place because it looked strange to me entering from the back of the temple. I called on the temple’s hall where many priceless picture drawn in the reigns of King RamaI, Rama II and Rama III are displayed. Those pictures tell the story of what happens to bad people when they are tortured in hell.

Like most tourists to Wat Suthad, I only visited certain parts of the temple compound and didn’t explore every building. I entered the chapel, where a big and beautiful Buddha image is located. The chapel walls are painted with a series of murals relating the Buddhist epic. It looked to me like the paintings had just recently been renovated.

I left the temple from the front gate and continued my journey along Bamroongmuang Road, which is famous for religious materials trading. I then stepped in to Trok Kaysa, a small narrow street where there are many old-fashioned houses of a kind that is hard to find in Bangkok nowadays. I walked through to Fuang Nakhon Road and double-checked to make sure I had enough film left to record the coming hidden beauty.

I kept walking and folund myself standing at the big swing in front of the Bangkok Government office. I walked through Thanaosri Street, which is somewhat similar to Bamroongmuang Street in that there is no footpath or pavement in some zones. I has to be aware of many vehicles that kept running in and out of the small side streets. Now Kor Panich, a famous sticky rice shop that has been in business since the reign of King Rama III, was in front of me. Crossing the street to the other side and entering SoiPrang Phuthorn, I could feel that the row of old building was built like a giant wall. I guessed that those buildings used to be a very busy commercial area, but their importance has lessened to day as they have been overshadowed by many newly constructed modern buildings.

Refreshing myself with a glass of lemonade, I was told by the juice vendor, who was of Chinese ancestry, that this land was all part of the King’s property. The people who have been living here for a long time have been kindly granted permission to stay as long as they pay just 400 bath a month for land rental, which is considered very cheap compared to today’s standard of living in the big city. The vendor told me that the building he occupied was built in the reign of King Rama V, more than a hundred years ago.

I then made my way to the back of the Interior Ministry compound and kept walking to the area called “Ku Muang Derm,” which was a drainage canal in the part. While I was walking, I imagined what it must have been like in the past. Then, L walked back to Soi Prang Phuthorn, connecting to Soi Prang Nara, where I saw the beauty of Talaphat Suksa School, the outside of which is decorated with fretwork. Shortly after that the gate of Sanphasatsuphakij Palace, built in the reign of King Rama V, appeared. It is considered one of the most important old palaces of Bangkok. The architecture is mainly European style.

After coming out, I found myself at Din Sor Street. Both sides of the street are still lined with old wooden houses. I looked for the DR Ice restaurant, because I had been told that it is well know for good food and delicious ice cream made from flowers.

Before I reached the bus stop, I saw an eccentric building called “Bharat Vidyalaya,” that houses a Hindu Samaj as well as a school. It is located next to a public park called Romaneenad Park. Obviously, the tower left standing there can tell the story that it used to be a prison.

My one-day trip was with amazing pleasure at the cost of only seven baht for fare. Although the weather in Bangkok is a bit warm and sometimes it rains, it is worth exploring the good old days by entering your own time machine with a short jouenry of one day.

A road with a View

Sunbeam from the bright Bangkok sky shone down strongly while I walked down one of the city’s oldest streets where the woodcarving community is located. Wat Saket Rajaworamaha-wihan, generally know as Phukao Thong (Golden Mount), was the first destination of my day trip. It took nearly ten minutes to climb to the top of the pagoda, where a sacred relic of the Lord Buddha is enshrined. Besides the admirable Lankan style Chedi, I was impressed  by the view from the top. I could see the red roofs of the monks’ abodes covering the Saket community below.

In former time Phukhao Thong was a popular place for organizing fun festivals and fairs, such as ‘Loy Kratong,’ a famous festival held on the full moon night of November. Hundred of  couples and children and join to light decorative candles, creating a golden glow under the moonlight. Guys could take girls to watch the fireworks and ride on a Ferris wheel. Two years ago if you mentioned Golden Mountain, first off people would think of it as a tourist  attraction. Secondly, they would think about the colorful fireworks and firecrackers for sale there. In the past couple of years all the wholesale fireworks shop have been forced to close down because of a new safety law.

After getting sunburned in the bright light, I went down to the small entrance beside the temple. I bought a lemon tea to quench my thirst while looking through the beautiful wood product along the road. Wat Saket is an old community with about 40 wood carving shops and mini sawmills owned by Thai-Chinese families. One wood carving retailer told me that she had run the business for 20 years. The wood us transferred from Pracha-Naruemit Lane, the center of lumber trade in Bangsue District. Even though the Saket community is a small area, wood carving fanciers can find many different kinds products in the neat furniture shops. The products are made from quality tropical wood such as rubber and teak.

I got a basic woodcutting lesson by observing a carpenter at work with a sawing machine. The smell of wood permeated my nose. I was wondering how they can produce such fine work with only small machines and carving equipment. If you are looking for a unique door for a new house, the Saket area is the place you should visit first. It is very quiet and you  won’t be shoved and jostled by crowds of shoppers. The price of a door will in the range of 2,700 to 8,500 baht.

Only ten minutes walk from Wat Saket is another place you shouldn’t miss. Loha Prasard (Metal Castle) is located in the same compound as Rachanadda Temple, Mahachai-Rachadamuen Klang. The metal has been repainted light pink. The top of the castle is made from metal. A Buddha image is located in the corner of each floor. The Metal Castle was built during the reign of King Rama III. Next to the castle is a school for monks. Teenaged monks who are studying the Buddhist Canon there often serve as guides for visitors.

I have to end my story here, after tripping over a stone. The beauty of hidden corners of the old town will bring you back to the past. Even though time runs quickly, and changes can’t be stopped, examples of the beauty of yesteryear still exist to bear witness to the Bangkok of the past.

Suan Pakkad Palace Museum

A Collection of 1,000-year-old Antiques.A priceless collection of  antiques aged over 5,00 years marks Suan Pakkad Palace museum as a house as art and culture Thai is well worth as visit.

The private collection of antiques collected by Their Royal Highness Trince Chumbhot of Nagara Svarga displayed at Suan Pakkad Palace Museum illuminates traces of the old time rarely to be found nowadays.
Located on Sri Ayudhya Road, just a five-minute walk from BTS Station, Suan Pakkad Palace Museum is a compound of eight traditional Thai houses on a 9,600-square-meter area. The name ‘suan Pakkad’ derived from the land that Prince Chumbhot bought from Chinese settlers who previously used this area for a lettuce plantation during the Eastern Asia War (1952).

Suan Pakkad Palace Museum consists of four groups of traditional. Thai houses connected by elevated walkways. Houses number 5 to 8 are located along the west of the palace. The Lacquer Pavilion stands to the south at the end of the main garden. The Ban Chiang and Marsi Galleries are located in the Chumbhot-Pantip collection of prehistoric artifacts in the Center of Arts. The first three houses were transferred from Nonthaburi and rebuilt on the site.

Rare Treasure of Wat Rakang

Rakang , location next to the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok’s Thonburi District, people normally think of the greatly respected and well-requted Somdej Wat Rakang amulet. However, there is another treasure at Wat Rakang that is worth knowing about and preserving for the following generations-its precious hall for keeping the Buddhist scripture, which was built in the Ayuthaya period.

Originally, this scripture hall was the former residence of King Rama I. Later on, it was donated to Wat Bang Wa Yai, or Wat Rakang, as it is known in the present day.

The architecture of the hall is obviously built in the Ayuthaya style. The three wooden buildings in tradition Thai style are raised on stilts, They were constructed together in the same compound for particular purposes. The lower part of the buildings were left empty and the buildings were painted, following the old belief that red is the color of power. The arch of the entrance was neatly designed with magnificent fretwork showing the social status of the residence’s owner.

Inside the hall, rare mural paintings by a renowned early Rattanakosin artist, Phra Ajarn Naga, still retain their beauty. Wat Rakang is one of the only places where works by Phra Ajarn Naga can still be found. The paintings convey the story of tThai myths and the epic of the Ramayana as well as motifs about Buddhist beliefs.

Unfortunately, most of the precious mural paintings are now becoming faded due to the fact that the color used was extracted from pure natural materials. Unfortunately, improper care of those paintings over the years has made them fade more quickly.

The exterior design of the scripture hall of Wat Rakang, with its Ayuthaya style construction, blends perfectly with the superlative artwork from the Rattanakosin era in the interior, making this scripture hall one of the nation’s most valuable treasures. In your next visit to that area, just call on Wat Rakang to see arare beauty from Thai history.

Get closer to Muang Krabi, or Krabi Town

Muang District Krabi  is the center of provincial administration where the largest numbers of people live. In other words, it is the “big city” ofKrabi Province. In Muang District you can find a wide range of attractions to suit your preference, your budget and your budget and your vacation time. Unlike most urban centers, Krabi Town has a beautiful landscape and breath-taking pristine sandy beaches. Here is a list of some of the things that should not be missed when visiting Krabi

Tham Sadet : The “Royal Procession Cave” is another of the beautiful caves of Krabi, featuring stalactites and stalagmites, located at Ban Nong Kok, 7 kilometers from the town.

Sa Kaew : The  Sa Kaew recreational area is a group of eight small natural swamps in a valley of Tambon Khao Thong. It can be accessed by taking the Krabi-Nai Sa Route (High way No. 4034), going about 28 kilometers from town.