You know when you find a great, unknown place in a crowded city, and you debate whether you should tell anyone or keep it to yourself? This is how I feel about this place— the Ancient City, or เมืองโบราณ.
Aside from the group of Thai school kids, I think the people working there out numbered the number of visitors. Or it could be that the park is so big that you can enjoy yourself without encountering crowds of tourists? We arrived at about 10:30 and it was a lovely ‘cool’ day for exploring. (It was only about 90F and there was lots of shade.) So we hopped on some bikes and off we went.
The concept of the place was to recreate all of the important ancient sites in Thailand, so these are all beautiful replicas of sacred sites from the different provinces.
This is the an Old Market town. And I read that it is NOT a replica but and actual old town that was moved and set up here again. Now you can buy souvenirs or have lunch here. Also there are craftsman making the traditional shadow puppets (below). They cut them from animal hide and then paint them.
The map makes it appear bigger than it was. When I first saw the map I expected it to take most of the day, but once we had started out it was clear that it wasn’t as big. We had biked all around and seen nearly everything in about 3 hours. Easily could have gone around again and just enjoyed the outdoors. The Ancient City is one—if not THE—best day activity I’ve done in Thailand so far. Fresh air, greenery, biking, and many photo-ops make it a fantastic time and totally worth the entry fee. I plan to go back with some other friends over their Christmas break. Have to go now before hot season.