A cultural and historical landmark, easily accessible by rail, river and road from Bangkok, Ayutthaya founded in the 14th century, was Siam’s capital for 400 years and grew to be one of the world’s largest municipalities. So a study centre dedicated to delineating the history of Ayutthaya, that puts its several millennia of rise to power and fall in a nutshell should be worth a visit. Visitors can come to grips with the long history of the city in a matter of minutes. The centre that was also funded by the Japanese government is housed in a modern building tastefully designed and well suited to the display of ancient artifacts.

Exhibits are divided into five categories; Ayutthaya as the capital city, as the port, as the centre of the state, a village at the time, Ayutthaya’s relations with other countries. The focal point of the centre is the beautifully lit and displayed archaeological pieces and models accompanied by dramatic audio narrations that attempt to recreate life in this ancient city as it may have been. The excellent models echo the museum’s categorization and depict an ancient village, Ayutthaya as a port city, shown with a corresponding map of the time, as an administrative centre and as a royal capital. Models of ships including that of a Chinese junk that may have traded with the city, a display on the first Europeans to visit Ayutthaya, life size replicas of Buddhist temples and image houses, copies of temple frescos and a miniature model of the royal palace all bring Ayutthaya’s history admirably to life. The centre also serves as resource bank for scholars in Thai history and therefore it has a good database of historical details.

Have the experience of a lifetime; take one of the Bangkok cruises on a converted 100 year old rice barge with Anantara Cruises Thailand and experience luxurious interiors and exceptional on board service while getting acquainted with centuries of Thai history sailing down the Chao Phraya River. As a key Bangkok cruise tour guests are provided with a delightful on board experience while discovering a multi faceted city.