This once-prosperous Siamese trade and political capital goes down as the most glorious as well as the most devastated city in Thai history. Still, tourism is healthy, as the city is bursting with stories to tell. Wandering through endless ancient ruin sites, you can’t help but feel humbled by the ingenuity of the Ayodha craftsmen and their powerful spiritual beliefs.
At the centre of Ayutthaya City is Ayutthaya Historical Park – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – the most visited site in the area. Here, the four spectacular temples of the early Ayutthaya period (1350 – 1529) stand amongst a dense canopy of ancient trees. West of it is the site of the Royal Palace and Royal Chapel (Wat Phra Si Sanphet) – the political and spiritual heart of the lost kingdom.
Apart from touring Ayutthaya’s history and temples, your visit can be filled with something more recent in terms of the cultural contexts such as the Ayodha Floating Market, Krirk Yoonpan’s Million Toys Museum, Ayutthaya Boat Museum or the Bang Sai Royal Folk Art and Crafts Center. Ayutthaya also has its own backpacker strip, on Naresuan Soi 1 and Soi 2, where you can find a whole host of affordable western food outlets and bike rental businesses.