A brief visit to Phitsanulok
Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat
Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat, also known as Wat Yai (the great temple), is an important Buddhist temple located on the banks of the Nan River, near Naresuan Bridge, in Phitsanulok province. Dating from the 14th century, this ancient temple is associated with the history of the formation of the Phitsanulok land from the Sukhothai period onwards.
The temple is also home to the Phuttha Chinnarath Buddha statue, considered to be Thailand's finest Buddha image.
Another highlight is the 36-metre Khmer-style prang, which houses relics of the Buddha. Visitors can access the inside of the prang via a staircase. Tourists can also spend time at the foundry or museum located within the temple grounds to see numerous Buddha images and artefacts dating from the Ayutthaya and Sukhothai eras.
The Phuttha Chinnarath Buddha statue, considered to be the most beautiful Buddha image in Thailand.
This temple is very popular with the local population, as this statue of Buddha is extremely important and revered.
I myself was called to order by a spokesman because I had remained standing to take this photo, which is not tolerated... you have to enter and immediately kneel down to pray.
An immediate neighbour of Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat, Wat Nang Phaya is another important temple in Phitsanulok.
Its enclosure is not very large, being limited to a Viharn/Ubosot surrounded by buildings used by the monks.
From a historical and spiritual point of view, Wat Nang Phaya remains a significant place of worship thanks to the amulets discovered within its walls.
These are known as Phra Somdej Nang Phaya. Triangular in shape, they are among the five most coveted types of amulet in the country, hence the monastery's notoriety.
The only religious building is the restored Viharn, which has become Ubosot. It houses several remarkable Buddhas.
The main one illuminates the room with its brilliance. It is a replica of Phra Phutta Chinnarat, the famous Buddha housed in the neighbouring monastery.
Named Somdej Nang Phaya Ruan Kaeo, it is in no way inferior to the original.
The day after this visit and the discovery of these exceptional statues, we left Phitsanulok behind us.
We're heading for Udon Thani, which is 360km away and which I don't know yet.
Route 12, which I've taken several times already, will take us for a few kilometres before branching off in the direction of Thailand's 4th largest city.
The photo above is of the Kaeng Song waterfall during the dry season, i.e. in March. Idyllic scenery, relaxing, calm, welcoming...
When we were there, the locals told us that you couldn't see the rocks in the rainy season...
This time, we went back to the same spot at the beginning of October... and here's the difference...