Kamphaeng Phet is an ancient city of more than 700 years, situated on the left bank of Mae Nam Ping and was formerly called "Cha Kang Rao" and "Nakhon Chum". It is an important archaeological site and its impressive ruins attest to the splendor of its early past.
Kamphaeng Phet occupies an area of 8,607.5 square kilometers and is located 35 kms. from Bangkok. It is administratively divided into 7 Amphoes and 2 King Amphoes : Muang, Phran Kratai, Khlong Khlung, Khanu Woralaksaburi, Sai Ngam, Lan Krabu, Khlong Lan, King Amphoe Thung Sai, and Pang Sila Thong.
KAMPHAENG PHET's ATTRACTIONS
Kamphaeng Phet Historical Park :
Kamphaeng Phet Historical Park Kamphaeng Phet Historical Park is located 5 kms. from town along Kamphaeng Phet - Phran Kratai Road. The archaeological sites in the ancient city of Kamphaeng Phet is now under renovation by the Fine Arts Departments and open to the public everyday from 8.30 16.30 hrs. The admission fee is 20 baht.
The ancient ruins in Kampheang Phet Historical Park are divided into 2 areas:
Inside The Citywalls :
Kamphaeng Phet National Museum This museum, located behind Wat Phra Kaeo, was officially opened in early 1970. It contains objects d'art and archaeological objects of various periods from pre-historical times to the present, from all over Thailand, in addition to archaeological items from excavations in Kamphaeng Phet and its neighbouring provinces. It is open daily from 9.00 -16.00 hrs. except Mondays, Tuesdays and official holidays, admission fee is 10 Baht.
Wat Phra Kaeo This important monastery is situated in the heart of Kamphaeng Phet City. Its walls are made of whole slabs of round sand stone laid parallel to the city walls. All structures within the monastery are made of sand stone and it is presided over by a large pagoda of Sri Lankan style.
Wat Phrathat This is the second largest monastery located within the city wall, just east of Wat Phra Kaeo. It is presided over by a pagoda built of sand stone and bricks, surrounded by a Vihara with sand stone walls, having a gate on each side. The construction is in classical Kamphaeng Phet style.
San Phra Isuan This shrine is situated behind the Provincial Court. The structure is of square sand stone base with 1.5 meters high floor and a staircase. On the Chuk Chi pedestal there is a bronze of Isuan God, cast recently. (The original image is displayed in Kamphaeng Phet Nation Museum) During the reign of King Rama V, however, a German tourist to Kamphaeng Phet secretly removed the head and hands of the idol and brought them to Bangkok in 1886. The Ruler of Kamphaeng Phet notified Bangkok about the incident and the King personally requested the return of the head and hands. A replica was cast and graciously given as a replacement, which is now displayed in the Museum of Berlin, Germany.
The City Pillar Shrine It has been built by King Woraman, during Sukhothai Period. It is highly respected by Kamphaeng Phet residents.
Luang Pho Mo This image is housed in a monastery in the heart of Kamphaeng Phet City. It is believed by the faithful that it is capable of preventing rainfall.
Out The Citywalls:
Wat Chang Rop This is a big monastery on a hill, having a large pagoda located at the center of the courtyard. The pagoda is supported by 68 half-bodied elephants (head and forelegs). This monastery has sand stone walls and is of early Ayutthaya or late Sukhothai architecture.
Wat Phra Non is the renovated Buddhist monastery with four laterite walls. Within is compound, there are a square shaped well and bathrooms. Its chapel whose base and pillars are made of laterite has the boundary stones (or SEMA) carved in as a diety in the Thai salute manner and other delicate designs. Behind the church is situated a vihara housing the reclining image of Buddha. The vihara's wall was partly cut into space blocks replaced by balusters. Another striking spot is its large pillars. Nowadays, this construction styles are rarely found.
Wat Phra Si Ariyabot This monastery is locally called "Wat Phra Yun". It is fronted by a large pond. The walls are of vertics sand stone slabs decorated on each side with Buddha images cast in each of the four attitudes, i.e. : Reclining, Walking, Standing and Sitting.
Wat Sing It is supposed that this monastary might have been constructed during both Sukhothai and Ayutthaya period because of its mixed-styles of Arts.
Wat Awat Yai A monastery with huge construction project, consisting of many pagodas and viharas, is situated on the road to Amphoe Phran Kratai, about three kilometers north of Saphan Khom Gate. Its walls are of sand stone and in its courtyard is a large octagonal pagoda. In front of the monastery on the road side, there is a big square pond dug into sand stone floor called "Bo Sam Saen".
Muang Nakhon Chum and Muang Trai Trung are two ancient towns. Muang Nakhon Chum is located on the east bank of the Ping River. The town's earthen wall, 2-3 metres high, was built in rectangular shape. Within the precinct, there are old Buddhist monasteries: the important one is Wat Phra Borommathat. Muang Trai Trung is located far away from Kamphaeng Phet City to the south about 18 Kms. along the route Khampheng Phet Khlong Lan. Since its ancient structures have been gradually destroyed by time, only the remains of some Chedis can be seen.
Sirichit Park is a multi-purpose public park, located on the bank of Maenam Ping opposite Chakangrao Hotel. It has a sports field, flower garden, tourism public relations center and folk products and handicrafts center or night bazaar.
Khao Son - Khao Sanam Phriang Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in Tambon Kosamphi west of Kamphaeng Phet. It is another major tourist attraction developed by the Province as a natural resort. Trip to the park begins from the township area at Km. 358 of Kamphaeng Phet - Tak Highway. Turn left at Km. 380 for 9 kms.
Namtok Khlong Lan National Park This Park is located about 65 kms. west of Kamphaeng Phet along the road to Amphoe Khlong Lan.
Namtok Khlong Lan A medium-sized waterfall, it flows year - round. In the vicinity of the waterfall, there are several hill tribe villages, and one may see Yao, Meo and Karen people.
Namtok Khlong Nam Lai or Namtok Pang Kwai This 9 - level waterfall is located 16 kms. from Namtok Khlong Lan and there is access road to the waterfall itself. It has been established as a National Park and it flows year-round.
Khlong Lan Hilltribe Handicraft Center is located at the entrance to Khlong Lan Waterfall. The center gives support to the hilltribes in the surrounding area in improving the standard of their living. Souvenirs and products of each hilltribe are available on sale.
Mae Wong National Park is about 79 kilometer from the provincial town and on Khlonglan - Umphang highway. Its tourist attractions include waterfalls, lookout posts, hot springs and nature study walk - route. For park accommodation, please contact National Parks Division, Royal Forestry Department. Tel. 5790529, 5794842.
Nop Phra Len Phleng (Kamphaeng Phet Word Heritage Site Celebrations) In February each year, Kamphaeng Phet celebrates its 1991 UNESCO designation as a World Heritage Site with ancient Nop Phra Len Phleng precessions, historical exhibitions, cultural and artistic demonstrations, cultural performances, numerous forms of popular entertainment and light & sound presentations among its historic ruins.