, or in full, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya province
, is one of the provinces in the Central Region of Thailand. It covers an area of 2556.6 sq km (987.1 sq mi) and has a population of 787,653 people (2011). The province it bordered by Lopburi
to the north, Saraburi
to the east, Pathum Thani
to the south, Nakhon Pathom
to the southwest and Suphan Buri
to the west.
The capital is Ayutthaya Province is the city of Ayutthaya
. As with the province itself, its full name is also Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya. The city is unique among provincial capitals in that it is not called Amphoe Mueang, with other provincial capitals are called, but simply Amphoe Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya.
The province of Ayutthaya is subdivided into sixteen districts, namely Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Tha Ruea, Nakhon Luang, Bang Sai, Bang Ban, Bang Pa-in, Bang Pahan, Phaik Hai, Phachi, Lat Bua Luang, Wang Noi, Sena, Bang Sai, Uthai, Maha Rat and Ban Phraek. These districts are further subdivided into subdistricts or communes, which total 209.
The Chao Phraya River
flows through the relatively flat Ayutthaya Province. The area is within a major rice-growing region of Thailand. The low-lying topography, and the fact that a major river meanders through the area makes Ayutthaya Province prone to flooding, with a major flood happening here in 2011.
Places of Interest in Ayutthaya Province
The Ancient City of Ayutthaya
is the former capital of Siam, is the main tourist attraction in Ayutthaya Province. It occupies a man-made island looped by the Chao Phraya River. This is where all its major sights are located.
Festivals in Ayutthaya Province
- End January: Bang Sai Arts and Crafts Fair
This annual fare showcases the rural handicrafts of Ayutthaya Province. It is an excellent venue to find traditional Thai crafts for your home.
- 13 April: Songkran Festival
Festival based on rite of purification. Highlight of this festival is the traditional procession held in front of Wihan Phra Mongkhon Bophit in Ayutthaya.
- April May: Wai Khru Tao Ceremony
This is a ceremony for blacksmiths and knife-makers. It is a time for students and apprentices in the blacksmith industry to honor their masters and get the tools and equipments they use blessed.
- November: Loi Krathong
Another rite of purification held by the river. The main venue is the Bang Sai Arts and Crafts Centre in Amphoe Bang Sai. Among the events include beauty pagent, processions, hanging lanterns and the floating of krathongs (floral offerings). Long boat races are also held.
- December: Ayutthaya World Heritage Fair
Festival commemorating the inscription of Ayutthaya World Heritage Site by UNESCO on 13 December 1991. The fair showcases local way of life, handicrafts and traditions.
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