Sunday, March 15, 2009

Suan Pakkad palace

Within Bangkok there are hardly any places which really could be given the label "unseen", but even though this one is listed in many guidebooks it gets far less visitors than the prime attraction of the city. When I went there in 2001, there were less than a handful of visitors.

I am talking about Suan Pakkard (สวนผักกาด), a former palace and residence of the Prince of Nakhon Sawan. It consists of a group of four traditional Thai houses connected with walkways, and each of the houses exhibits cultural highlights, the oldest one being Ban Chiang pottery. The most famous of the houses the lacquer pavillon, but sadly my photo of it was not good enough to be displayed here. I think I should revisit the place for some new photos, and I also cannot recall much of the exhibition anymore. Only a collection of khon masks stick to my memory. And I also still have the hendheld fan which was given to me at the entrance - as all the exhibits are in the open houses it can get quite hot.

In the second photo you can see the traditional house together with the Baiyoke Tower, the highest skyscraper of Thailand. I tried to capture the contrast of the two buildings, one centuries old and one so much modern. For another comparison, an historic photo of Thai women in front the the lacquer pavillon at the TEFL sphere also shows the surroundings have changed quite a bit since then - the hairstyle looks like the photo was taken in the 1960s.

2 comments:

Talen said...

Definitely on my list of places to visit on my upcoming trip. Thanks for the recommendation.

Amy P. said...

This palace/museum/park is like a little sanctuary in the city. It's a lovely place to spend the afternoon meandering around. Nice post!