The ancient Thai capital of Sukhothai, which means ‘Dawn of Happiness”, was founded in the 13th Century and became the kingdom’s first capital. Under the reign of eight Sukhothai kings, Thai arts and culture prospered during this golden age. Although this kingdom had a short life of around 150 years, Sukhothai was able to produce art which is considered as some of the most unique and beautiful Buddhist art in Asian history.
Located north of Bangkok, Sukhothai is now a delightful market town with a 45-square kilometre World Heritage-listed historical park with many ruins and temples that are fun to explore by bicycle. The key monuments to visit include Wat Mahathat with its royal temple and cemetery and Sra Si Wat with its two stupas, their graceful lines reflected in the water of the town’s biggest reservoir. Another highlight is to participate in an early morning alms offering to the Buddhist monks.