Attraction in Thailand : Lop Buri

Ang Thong
Bangkok & Neighboring city
Chai Nat
Hua Hin
Lop Buri
Nakorn Nayok
Phetchaburi - Cha Am
Rayong & Chanthaburi
Sing Buri
Suphan Buri

Lop Buri was an ancient Khmer capital dating from the 10th century. Today, it is a modern garrison town and provincial capital 153 kilometers north of Bangkok. Several noteworthy Khmer-style monuments attest to Lop Buri's antiquity, and the Narai Ratchaniwet Palace, constructed during the mid-1600s by the Ayutthayan monarch Narai the Great (reign: 1656-1688) combines both Thai and western-style architecture, indicating French influences prevailing during that time.

Attractions - in the city

King Narai the Great Statue

This statue near the town entrance commemorates the Ayutthayan monarch who made Lop Buri his second capital, and helped the town prosper. Narai the Great is remembered for fostering close diplomatic ties with European powers, and introducing western technology, such as terra cotta pipes to supply drinking water to his palace.

Phra Prang Sam Yot

This former Hindu shrine is some 200 meters from the railway station and is Lop Buri's best-known landmark. The laterite and sandstone structure was constructed in the Lop Buri style and decorated with stucco. The three towers signify the Hindu Trinity of Brahma the Creator, Vishnu the Preserver and Shiva the Destroyer. During the reign of King Narai, the shrine was converted to a Buddhist temple.

San Phra Kan

This former Brahman shrine adjacent to Phra Prang Sam Yot comprises two sections, the older dating back to the Khmer period, and the newer dating from 1951. The latter contains a four-armed deity with a Buddha's head that is an object of worship. The shrine is noteworthy for a resident troupe of mischievous and entertaining monkeys.

Prang Kaek

This charming and petite Khmer ruin in the market place on Vichayen Road near Narai Ratchaniwet Palace was also a Hindu shrine and is considered to be Lop Buri's oldest monument.

Wat Nakhon Kosa

Located north of the railway station, near the Phra Kan shrine, this temple was formerly a Khmer place of worship. The Lop Buri-style prangs fronting the temple was built around 1157. The U-Thong-style cement Buddhas on the prangs were added at a later date. The temple was probably restored during the reign of Narai the Great.

Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat

This Buddhist temple behind the railway station was probably founded during the 12th century. Many restorations were made during the Ayutthaya period (1350-1767). The prangs and chedis seen today were built in the Sukhothai and Ayutthaya styles.

Vichayen House

King Narai constructed Vichayen House as a residence for Chevalier de Chaumont, the first French ambassador to Thailand during the reign of Louis XIV. Later, Chao Phraya Vichayen (the Greek adventurer Constantine Phaulkon) occupied the residence until his death in 1688. Many ruined buildings dot the compound. One served as a Roman Catholic chapel. Others were residences for the ambassador and mission members. Ruined brick water tanks and fountains are also visible.

Wat Mani Chonlakhan

Originally named Wat Ko Kaeo, this temple was constructed during the reign of King Mongkut (Rama IV, reign: 1851-1868) on a riverine island in the Lop Buri River. Interesting sights include the chapels, Chedi Luang Pho Saeng, and the large riverside Buddha image.

Wat Sao Thong

Parts of this temple, north of Narai the Great' s palace, may have originally been constructed either as a church or a mosque. Narai the Great restored the monastery and initiated the western-style windows of the secondary chapel. Near this building are the Pichu and Khotchasan Buildings, which were formerly used as reception houses for the Persian ambassadors.

Narai Ratchaniwet Palace

This palace was constructed over a 12-year period from 1665 until 1677. Narai Ratchaniwet Palace is located in the town center between Ratchadamnoen Road and Pratu Chai Road, and is not far from the railway station. Structures built during the reign of King Narai include:

The Water Reservoir

Constructed to store water, which came through terra cotta pipes from a freshwater lake, Tale Chupson, which supplied drinking water to the inhabitants of Lop Buri.

Phra Khlang Supharat

Commonly known as 'The Twelve Treasure Houses', and built to store royal treasures, as well as royal goods sold to foreign merchants during the late 1600s.

Elephant & Horse Stables

These are located close to the wall separating the outer and middle sections of the palace.

Chantara Phisan Pavilion

Originally the royal residence of King Narai, in 1665, the pavilion was subsequently used as an audience hall after the king moved his residence to the Suttha Sawan Pavilion. Architecturally, the building is purely Thai in style, indicating that no French architects were involved in its construction. King Mongkut, and now serves as a hall for displaying archaeological and art objects restored the building in 1863. Many Lop Buri-style stone Buddha images are kept in the building.

Dusit Sawan Thanya Maha Prasat Hall

King Narai had this building constructed as an audience hall in which to receive high-ranking foreign visitors and ambassadors. The king probably received Chevalier de Chaumont, the representative of Louis XIV, in this hall. The building was constructed in a mixture of French and Thai architectural styles.

Suttha Sawan Pavilion

It was in this residence that Narai the Great died on July 11, 1688, while the palace was under the control of royal revolutionaries. Ruins of artificial hills and fountains remain. It was recorded that the pavilion originally stood amid a beautiful garden that contained many fountains.

Phrachao Hao Building

King Narai built this, probably as a private audience hall, in Thai architectural style. Only wall sections remain, but designs decorating doors and windows are still visible.

Banquet Hall

Built to entertain foreign visitors, the hall is surrounded on three sides by ponds. A brick platform fronting the hall may have been a stage or theatre where guests were entertained, perhaps by shadow plays or dances, following dinner. During 1856, King Mongkut (Rama IV) restored the palace and designated it the 'inner capital'. Buildings constructed during King Mongkut's reign are:

Phiman Mongkut Pavilion

King Mongkut used the three-storey building as his residence during the renovation of the palace. Three other two storied buildings, namely the Suttha Winitchai Pavilion, the Chai Sattrakorn Pavilion and the Akson Sattrakhom, are connected to the Phiman Mongkut Pavilion. The three buildings are offices of the Lop Buri National Museum.

Phra Prathiap Buildings

Eight two-storied buildings behind King Mongkut's residence were used as the residences of inner court officials.

Royal Guards Residence

This is situated at the entrance to the middle court.

King Narai National Museum

This museum was established in 1924 in the Narai Ratchaniwinet Palace. The museum is open from 9.00 AM until 4.00 PM every day except Monday and Tuesday. Various objets d'art and antiques are displayed in three major buildings.

Phiman Mongkut Pavilion

Prehistoric artifacts, such as stone axes and earthenware, ancient Buddha images, woodcarvings, statues of celestial beings and the like are displayed.

Chantharahisan Pavilion

Buddhist artifacts from the Ayutthaya and Rattanakosin periods, and historic paintings from King Narai's reign, are displayed.

Farmer's Museum

Traditional agricultural tools and implements, including ploughs, carts, grain separators and fish traps are displayed.

Lop Buri Zoo

This 25-acre enclave is situated behind the Army Theatre near Sa Kaeo Circle. The zoo's inmates include favorite Asian and Australasian birds and mammals. The most unusual spectacle is that of three tigers and four dogs, each suckled at birth by the dogs' mother, living in unique harmony. The tree-shaded area is open every day from 8.00 AM until 6.00 PM.

Wat San Paolo

This temple, some 3 kilometers east of town, was originally a Jesuit church founded during King Narai's reign.

Kraison Siharat Hall or Phra Thinang Yen

Located on an island in a dried up lake, Tale Chupson, that formerly supplied drinking water to Lop Buri residents, the hall was built by King Narai and was used as a place by the king, Jesuits and Louis XIV's envoys to witness a lunar eclipse on December 11, 1685.

Wat Yang Na Rangsi

Located beside the Lop Buri River, some 9 kilometers south of the city center, the temple is notable for its wooden sala (teaching hall) dating from the 1920s, which houses a Local Boat Museum wherein many local vessels are displayed.

Attractions - out of the city


Located on the banks of the Bang Kham River, some 24 kilometers from Lop Buri, this Ayutthaya-period temple is particularly noteworthy for a chapel with stucco renditions of the Buddha's previous life, and his first sermon after attaining enlightenment. The exquisite craftsmanship makes this a masterpiece of Thai sculpture.

Wang Kan Luang Waterfall - AMPHOE CHAI BADAN

Some 20 kilometers from Lam Narai Market (via Highway 2089), this refreshing retreat has ten cascades and flows throughout the year thanks to a nearby large underground water source.

Wat Thammikaram - AMPHOE BAN MI

This ancient canal side temple was formerly named Wat Khang Khao (Bat Temple) since many bats lived there. The temple is particularly noteworthy for murals dating from the mid-1800s.

Wat Khao Wongkot - AMPHOE BAN MI

Located at the foot of Sanam Daeng Mountain, the temple is noteworthy for a large bat cave from whence inhabitants depart, weather permitting, around 6.00 PM in great numbers to seek food. It takes up to 2 hours to empty the cave. The temple derives income from the sale of bats' droppings.


Some 45 kilometers from Lop Buri, Thailand's largest sunflower plantation in Chong Sarika becomes a tourism attraction from November to January when sunflowers are in full bloom.

Major Event

King Narai Reign Fair

This annual event, each February, includes pageantry, homage-paying ceremonies, folk entertainment and native bazaars to commemorate the Ayutthayan monarch who brought prosperity to Lop Buri during the late 1600s. The fair is largely staged at Narai's Lop Buri palace.