Sukhothai

Right: Ancient ruins at Sukhothai

I arrived in Sukhothai by bus from Phitsanulok. Sukhothai was the first capital of thailand and has to be one of the prime attractions in northern Thailand. The Old Sukothai Historical park houses ancient ruins set amongst some picturesque gardens. The ruined state of the monuments can in many cases be attributed to invading Burmese armies.

Sukhothai

Right: Buddha relaxes among the ruins

The park itself is about 10km out of the modern city of Sukhothai. The songthaew pulls up outside a bicycle shop at the side of a dusty road and the driver motions to we farangs (myself and two Japanese) to get out here. I'm looking arouns thinking I don't see any historical gardens when an old lady comes out of the bicycle shop, "Sukhotai, two kilomet," gesturing down the road, ".....bicycle 20 Baht". Heh, they saw us coming. So I ride off on a rickety old bike that probably wouldn't be worth 20 Baht if I were to buy it and get to the gate of the park. The sign on the gate reads admission 30B farang 40B bicycle 10B surcharge. Figures! I'm beginning to think the whole country is one big racket. The park though is quite large and bicycle is probably a good way to visit.

The park was used as a backdrop in the movie "Mortal Kombat II".