A is for Ayutthaya – today’s journey on 2021’s Blogging from A to Z Challenge takes us to Thailand.
Cooked rats as a snack!
We arrived in Ayutthaya after a longish road trip from Kanchanaburi. At least it felt long with a break for lunch, a visit to a factory where fabric is manually spun and let’s not forget the stopover at a roadside vendor selling cooked rats! Yes, rats… and birds. And, no, I didn’t have any.
A city of archaeological ruins
Ayutthaya is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s ancient and much of the old city consists of ruins with archaeological value. The astonishingly large structures of Wat Phra Si Sanphet are sadly beyond repair. Statues lie broken and scattered haphazardly over the site, the towers of the temple reminding me of an ancient civilization that was destroyed forcing inhabitants to leave, in a hurry. In fact, this is what happened – Ayutthaya was destroyed by the Burmese in 1767 leading to the fall of a city with commercial and diplomatic significance. The immensity of the site had me gazing in awe trying to imagine what it might have looked like in its prime.
The Buddha’s head is where…?
The image below evoked a “what the…?” reaction followed by a scramble to grab the best spot to photograph the Buddha head caught in the tree roots at Wat Mahathat.
A train station from another time
From Ayutthaya, we boarded the night train to Chiang Mai. The Ayutthaya station is one of the most beautiful I’ve seen on my travels to date with polished wooden benches and a shiny red-tiled floor, reminding me of a 1940’s movie set. Why I don’t know. It just felt that way.
A train station of times gone by indeed.