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Wat Phra Ram, Ayutthaya Overview

Wat Phra Ram is a ruin located close to the former grand palace, over a swamp. It is built at the same place that King Rathibodi I was cremated in 1369. The construction was sanctioned by his son, and is said to be the first temple constructed after his death. Though the treasuries of the monastery have long been looted, they once held large amounts of the King's own belongings and treasures.

Wat Phra Ram, the temple of Hindu deity Shri Ram and the cremation site of King Ramathibodhi I is located at the heart of Ayutthaya’s old town. The Prang (Gopuram of the temple, usually richly carved) of this temple is quite impressive and is intact, though other parts of the temple are ruined. This quiet place is perfect for some meditative reflection. There is a massive swamp in front of the temple known as Bueng Phra Ram. The soil under this swamp was dug out to build this temple and many other temples and palaces of Ayutthaya city, accounting to the enormous size of this swamp.

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Wat Phra Ram History

The construction of this temple was taken up during the reign of King Ramesuan after his father King Ramathibodhi passed away in the year 1369. He reigned only for one year (1369 – 1370) and therefore, the temple construction came to a temporary halt. The construction work resumed after King Ramesuan returned to the throne in 1370. Further restoration of this temple took place during the reign of King Borom Trailokanath (r. 1448 – 1488) and King Borommakot (r. 1733 – 1758).

Temple Architecture

The temple has a central Prang built in Khmer-style architecture, housed in a large square platform surrounded by many chedis (stupas). The main entrance is to the west side, but it was initially an east-facing temple. There are two halls on either side of the Prang. The sanctuary of the temple houses many ruined statues of Buddha. Though most of the temple is destroyed, it speaks a lot about the glory of this kingdom.

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