One of the great things I like to do while traveling is to stop wherever I see interesting places along the road. Wat Neramit Wipatsana was one of those interesting places. The Temple is located high in the mountains in Loei Province in northern Thailand. The laterite gateway is what caught my eye while driving though the Loei Mountains.
Wat Neramit has one of the most impressive churches of any temple I have been to which is 40 meters by 80 meters and reported to be the biggest church area of any temple in Thailand. The temple is well maintained and quite beautiful with amazing gardens that surround the building of the Temple. The garden on the northern portion of the temple has several mature Sala Trees, which are important to the Buddhist tradition.
Sukhothai Historical Park is the location of an ancient city of Thailand's Sukhothai period (1235 to 1438) and part of UNESCO's World Heritage System of sites of historical and cultural significance in Thailand. The park is located approximately 430 kilometers north of Bangkok. The City of Sukhothai was Capital of the Kingdom of Sukhothai as it housed the king and the royal family. The Kingdom of Sukhothai makes up the first independent kingdoms that would later be part of Siam and after that Thailand. This period is full of art, architecture and language that would grow into what Thai culture is today.
King Ramkhamhaeng, who was the third king of the Phra Ruang Dynasty, ruled the Sukhothai Kingdom from 1279 to 1298, during its most prosperous era. King Ramkhamhaeng is credited for the creation of the Thai alphabet and the establishment of Theravada Buddhism as the state religion of the kingdom.
Sukhothai, which translates to "Dawn of Happiness", was a large city at over 70 square kilometers and over 190 ruins from the period have been identified and restored. The main part of the park is identified by a walled in area approximately 1.2 kilometers by 1.6 kilometers. The walled in portion of the park contains the more significant restored ruins of the period. The wall acted to protect the King and the important city inhabitants from the Burmese, whom they were at war with during that period. The main temples within the walled area include Wat Chana Songkhram, Wat Sa Si, Wat Trapang Ngoen, Wat Mahathat and Wat Sri Savaya.
There are bikes for rent at the entrance to the park which I recommend getting due to the size of the park. The rental fee is 30 baht and the entrance fee is 100 baht for foreigners and 20 baht for locals with an extra 10 baht fee for the bike.
Si Satchanalai Historical Park is the location of an ancient city of Thailand's Sukhothai period (1235 to 1438), part of UNESCO's World Heritage System of sites of historical and cultural significance in Thailand that also includes Sukhothai National Historical Park. The park is located approximately 55 kilometers north of the modern City of Sukhothai and does not receive a lot of visitors due to its remote location.
Si Satchanalai, which translates to "The City of Good People, was quite a large city at over 4,500 square acres with a walled in area of approximately 275 acres. There are bikes for rent at the entrance to the park which I recommend getting due to the size of the park. The rental fee is 30 baht and the entrance fee is 100 baht for foreigners and 20 baht for locals with an extra 10 fee for the bike.
The city of Si Satchanalai was important to the Kingdom of Sukhothai as it housed the crown prince throughout the 13th and 14th century.
The walled in portion of the park is bordered on the east by the Yom River and contains the more significant restored ruins of the period. The wall acted to protect the city inhabitants from the Burmese whom they were at war with during that period. The restored ruins include mainly include the wall structures and quite a few large ancient temples. The main temples within the walled area include Wat Chang Lom, Wat Nang Phaya, Wat Chedi Chet Thaeo, and Wat Khao Suwankhiri with Wat Chang Lom being the most historically significant.
As I rode from one restored temple to another, I imagined how life must have been for the city inhabitants within the wall, with large wooden houses with thatched roofs made of materials that didn't survive the passage of time. Smoke filled air from cooking fires for the large meals made for the ancient city folks. There were many dirt paths from one structure to the other. Cities of this size must have had a large support system of farms surrounding the city to feed a growing population inside the walls. In turn the farmers were provided security from a functional military from the Burmese and Kilmer raiders that came and went.
Khun Korn Waterfall, located within a lush bamboo forest, is located approximately 30 kilometres outside Chiang Rai city to the southwest. Getting there is easy, taking Route 1208 past Wat Rong Khun and follow the signs (which are in English). The trail from the parking area is 1,400 meters and a fairly easy hike. The waterfall is a must see if you have the time, for the height of the waterfall is 70 meters, making it one of Thailand's highest.
After a long day of touring northern Thailand, the Chiang-Rai Night Bazaar is a great place to relax to some music while you eat and drink to revitalize for the next day's Tours. The Bazaar area has a food court and two stages offering different entertainment. There are also many shops to buy your family gifts made by Thailand artisans.
Chiang-Mai's Wualai Road Saturday Night Market is a city street in Chiang Mai that is converted into a walking street on Saturday nights. The walking street is an excellent place to unwind after a day of touring northern Thailand and buy gifts for friends and family. Be prepared though, on Saturday Wualai Road gets very crowded.
Boon Rawd Farm, an absolutely a beautiful farm and one of the largest tea producers in Thailand, is owned and operated by the Singha Corporation. The farm is reported to have 237 acres of tea which produces over 400 tons of high quality tea annually. The farm workers are local Thais and people from varios hill tribes, whose unique traditions, ways of life and cultures have long been appealing to outsiders.
Adjacent to the farm is Singha Park managed by Boonrawd Farm Co., Ltd./Singha Corporation, has over 3,000 acres of land where tourists can ride the farm’s tour trolley or enjoy the scenery and take in the natural environment. There are many different types of agriculture to see such as fields of flowers and pumkins and of course the fields of tea, making the tour a colorful sight. There are many fun adventures to enjoy that includes mountain biking, zip lining, and climbing a climbing wall.
There are lots of products to buy in the store in the park that are all locally made at the farm. The Bhubhirom Restaurant, has an awesom view in the middle of the farm.
Overlooking the border Town of Mae Sai is Wat Phra That Doi Wao, just a short walk up (but a little strenuous) from the Mae Sai market area. The views from the chedi are absolutely amazing and give you a great over view of the entire border area and a large portion of the Town of Mae Sai. It is a big recommend if you find yourself in the Town of Mae Sai.
Wat Phra That Doi Suthep or often called Wat Doi Suthep sits on top of Doi Suthep Mountain that overlooks Chiang Mai, 15 kilometers away. The views of Chiang Mai from on top of the mountain are awesome and should be on your list of "must sees" for the Chiang Mai area, if visiting. The temple is quite striking, with the a golden chedi at its center and many Buddha images. You access the temple grounds from the main road transecting the mountain but that is just the start of your journey. From the parking area there are many steps up the mountain summit to the temple grounds. But the hike is worth the effort with the views and beautiful temple grounds.
According to Thai legend, the temple was constructed at the of where a sacred Buddha relic laid to rest with the death of a white elephant (sacred to the ancient Thai People). The relic was found by a monk named Sumanathera during the Sukhothai period. The relic was said to have many special powers but then showed to the King at the time the relic did not show any powers. Part of the relic was placed on the back of a white elephant and sent up to Doi Suthep and promptly dropped dead. The temple is purported to constructed at the location where the elephant died.
The mountains in northern Thailand are especially beautiful. They are also used for growing delicious crops in cooler climate. The mountains in eastern Chiang Rai are used for growing mostly cabbages, as shown in my pictures. these farms are on the side of the mountains and must be very very difficult for the farmers. However, these farms offer amazing views with the traveler along the roads in northern Thailand. These Photos were taken in Chiang Rai Province on the Laos Boarder.
Great Destinations in Northern Thailand. Click here to view a list of Articles about Destinations in Northern Thailand.
Follow the "Explore Thailand" link to easily explore Thailand Travel Explorer Blog's.
Use the "Thailand Destination Direction Guide" to help you navigate to your desired destination.
Explore Chiang Rai
Explore Chiang Mai
Bangkok's 9 Royal Temples
Bangkok Must Sees
Exploring Thailand's Nature
Islands of the Thai Gulf
Thailand's Royal Palaces
Thailand and World War 2
Especially written articles featuring amazing photos to help you explore the Land of Smiles....