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Sukhothai

Viewed by Thais as the cradle of the nation, Sukhothai was once the capital of a kingdom that stretched from Martaban, in present-day Myanmar, to Luang Prabang, in modern Laos. For two hundred years, the kings of Sukhothai reigned supreme over the region, dictating laws, ordering the construction of numerous structures, and trading with outside powers. Eventually, Sukhothai fell into a decline and was later absorbed by the kingdom of Ayutthaya.

Today, Sukhothai, which translates to "Dawn of Happiness", is a well-preserved ancient city, and one filled with temples, stupas, and intricate elephant carvings made in stone. Because of its state, Sukhothai was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991, and the entire area was converted into a historical park. While Sukhothai is eclipsed by the fame of Cambodia's Angkor Wat and central Thailand's Ayutthaya, it is nonetheless a historic, culturally significant site that sees considerably fewer tourists than both the aforementioned cities.

Viewed by Thais as the cradle of the nation, Sukhothai was once the capital of a kingdom that stretched from Martaban, in present-day Myanmar, to Luang Prabang, in modern Laos. For two hundred years, the kings of Sukhothai reigned supreme over the region, dictating laws, ordering the construction of numerous structures, and trading with outside powers. Eventually, Sukhothai fell into a decline and was later absorbed by the kingdom of Ayutthaya.

Today, Sukhothai, which translates to "Dawn of Happiness", is a well-preserved ancient city, and one filled with temples, stupas, and intricate elephant carvings made in stone. Because of its state, Sukhothai was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991, and the entire area was converted into a historical park. While Sukhothai is eclipsed by the fame of Cambodia's Angkor Wat and central Thailand's Ayutthaya, it is nonetheless a historic, culturally significant site that sees considerably fewer tourists than both the aforementioned cities.

EXPERIENCES

EXPERIENCES

Ramkhamhaeng National Museum

Meet a curator for a privately guided tour of the Ramkhamhaeng National Museum, which offers a comprehensive look at Thai ways of life during the Sukhothai period through the many sculptures and antiquities on display.

Sukhothai Historical Park

Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991, Sukhothai Historical Park includes ruins of the royal palaces, Buddhist temples, the city gates, walls, moats, dams, ditches, ponds, canals, and the water dyke control system. The site was thoroughly restored by the Thai Fine Arts Department in conjunction with UNESCO. Meet with the head of the restoration project who will give you a private, guided tour of the site, and discuss the history of the area in greater depth.

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