Schrattenkalk in Kairo
20/05/09

There we go. It’s time for the sum up of leg one of my trip in South-East Asia: Bangkok to Chaing Mai and back.

First stop Ayyuthaya: I arrived late at night. By this time there was no taxis to town anymore and the ferry had stopped running as well. After a bit of a walk, crossing a high way bridge and alike I finally arrived at my chosen residence. The night over I was entertained by the music of the graduation festivities of a high school near-by. After getting up I rented a bike and got on the way to explore the different ruins. Ayyuthaya was heavily destroyed in a war with the Burmese in 1767. The Burmese soldiers obviously took a certain pride in their job, as they literally grounded most parts of the city. Nevertheless the ruins are impressive. Most famous of all is probably the Buddha head which is held by the roots of a tree (see pictures). It is smaller than I had imagined it to be, but these things tend to be I guess (everyone who has been in the Louvre knows what I mean). The sleeping Buddha however, which I only bumped into by accident, is huge. In the evening I hopped on the train again and travelled to Lop Buri.

Second stop Lop Buri: Lop Buri is the famous monkey town. While I must say that the horror stories told in the Lonely Planet (more on this infamous book later) are clearly exaggerated, I did get a minor shock when opening my window before going to bed, straight looking into the face of a monkey. Well, I do admit, the face of the monkey was behind a metal fence, but nevertheless. This also explained the weird metal fence in front of my window, which I had wondered about before, when arriving in my room in the early evening hours. The next day I spent walking around Lop Buri, which is a pleasant small town and of course I went to the one temple, which is some kind of the head quarter of the Lop Buri monkeys. I waited a good fifteen minutes in front of the Buddha statue hoping to get a good shot of a monkey climbing on the Buddha, but even with hundreds of monkeys strolling around, none felt like doing me this favour. In the late afternoon I took the train to Nakhon Sawan, where I changed to a bus (the bus station is practically located at the other end of the city from the train station) to drive on to Kampaeng Phet.

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