Samut Songkhram is the province of fertile land, of plants
and food grains, the production source of vegetables and fruits, as
well as a vast variety of seafood products. It is also an
interesting historical source for the early Rattanakosin period.
Samut Songkhram is an ancient province
with a long history. Originally, it is believed that this province
was once a part of Ratchaburi province, and called “Suan Nork”
at that time. Then, towards the end of the Ayutthaya period
going on to the Thonburi period, it was separated from Ratchaburi
province and was called “Mueang Mae Klong”.
Samut Songkhram is located 72
Kilometres from Bangkok, occupies an area of 416 square kilometres
and is administratively divided into 3 districts: Amphoe Muang,
Amphoe Amphawa, and Amphoe Bang Khonthi
Don Hoi Lot
Don Hoi Lot
It is a bar at the mouth of the Mae Klong River,
created by sedimentation of sandy soil or “Khee Ped Sand”
as called by the locals. It occupies a vast area 3
Kilometres wide and 5 Kilometres long. There are two places:
Don Nok, located at the mouth of Mae Klong Gulf which can be
accessed by boat. The second is Don Nai, located at Chu
Chi village’s beach, Tambon Bang Cha Kreng and at Bang Bo
Village’s Beach, Tambon Bang Kaeo; which can be reached by car.
This bar contains various species of mollusc such as Hoi Lai,
Hoi Puk (Ridged Venus clam), Hoi Pak Ped, Hoi Khraeng (scallop),
and most abundant is the of Hoi Lot (worm shells).
Worm Shells have 2 shells which resemble a
straw and a muddy white meat. It lives in the muddy sand.
Catching the worm shell is best done at low tide. The way to
catch a worm shell is by using a little wooden stick dipped in
lime and plaster mixture and sticking it into the worm shell’s
hole. The worm shell will be agitated by the mixture and will
come to the surface and caught. It is not advisable to dump the
lime and plaster mixture onto the ground as will likely kill all
kinds of molluscs living there. The best time of the year to
catch the worm shells are during the months of March to May,
when they are in season.
A very important site within the Chu Chi
Village area at Don Hoi Lot is the Shrine of Prince Chumphon
Khet-udomsak which is highly revered by all Thais. There are
also restaurants and stalls selling a vast variety of local
products such as fresh-dried worm shell, fresh-dried seafood,
fish sauce, Khlong Khon shrimp paste, palm sugar, and palm
juice, and many others.
HOW TO GET
Travelling to Chu Chi
Village’s Beach at Tambon Bang Chakreng by-passing the
access road to Samut Songkhram and going on for another 3
kilometres. Before you reach the Phutthaloetlanaphalai
bridge, at the foot of the bridge, there is a 5 Kilometres
access road to Don Hoi Lot.;
Travelling to Bang Bo Village’s Beach
at Tambon Bang Kaew. Starting from the opposite side of the
road from the Highway Weighing Station on Thonburi-Paktho
Roadside. Just one Kilometre before you reach the access
road to Samut Songkhram, on your left, there will be a sign
pointing to Don Hoi Lot. Take this road - a laterite road 4
Kilometres long to Don Hoi Lot. The road is not convenient
for large vehicles;
By boat to Don Nok. There are many
kinds of boat that will take you there, they are available
at the Mae Klong river pier. For groups, please contact (Sun
Huad Heng Wood Mill) at 711-466 or call the Boat Ticket
Counter at Mae Klong River, Samut Songkhram in advance;
Taking a Song-Thaeo
(local truck) from the market in Mueang Samut Songkram to
Ban Chu Chi. The Song-Thaeo runs all day.
Wat Ban Laem or Wat Phet Samut Worawihan
This temple is located in Samut
Songkhram town. The former name is “Wat Sri Champa”. It
is the most important temple of the province. According to
history, in B.E. 2307 (1764) the Burmese invaded Mueang Phetburi
but Ayutthaya’s troops protected the city. Ban Laem people in
Phetburi migrated to escape from the Burmese and settled down at
Amphoe Mae Klong, further up from Wat Sri Champa, and called
this village “Ban Laem”, the same name as their former village
in Mueang Phetburi.
The people all ptiched in to renovate Wat
Sri Champa and gave it the new name of “Wat Ban Laem”.
Most of the Ban Laem people were fishermen. One day, they went
to catch fish as usual using a net in the Mae Klong Gulf, two
Buddha images were caught in the net: one was a seated image,
another was a standing image. The sitting image of the Buddha
was enshrined at Wat Khao Ta Krau, Phetburi province. For the
second standing image of the Buddha, the image was 1.67 metres
high and holding an alms-bowl, unfortunately, the bowl could not
be recovered. This Buddha image was enshrined at Wat Ban Laem
and was called “Luang Pho Ban Laem”. This is a very
sacred Buddha and many miracles have been associated with this
Buddha image amking the image highly revered by all.
Wat Ban Laem which once was a small and
disregarded temple, prospered and was enlarged mainly from the
donations made by the people out of their faith and from their
merit making and worshiping Luang Pho Ban Laem. Later, this
temple was promoted to the status of royal temple of the class
“Worawihan” and was granted the name of “Wat Phet Samut
Worawihan” by the King. To replace the lost alms-bowl of
Luang Pho Ban Laem, Prince Phanuphanwongworadej presented a blue
glass-bowl which can still be seen today.
In the temple compound, there is a monk
museum, exhibiting Buddha images, amulets from various periods,
artefacts, antiques, and a pulpit from the Ayutthaya period.
In front of Wat Ban Laem,
boat trips are available for a trip along the Mae Klong River to
King Rama II Memorial Park and Damnoen Saduak Floating Market.
Contact Mae Klong Travel Company (under the care of the Chairman
of Samut Songkhram Chamber of Commerce) at
located at Tambon Bang Cha Kreng. The temple is made from golden
teak wood and the inner walls are set with pearl-inlay. It was
built in the year 2535 B.E. (1982) by Phra Khru
Samutvisutthiwong, the former abbot. Inside the main building,
Ubosot, there are paintings depicting Buddha’s life, paintings
about the Ramayana epic, painting of famous monks. The temple is
highly revered by the people of Samut Songkhram and people of
Tha Kha Floating
The Tha Kha floating market
takes place on the 2nd, 7th, 12th
days of both the waxing and waning moon of the lunar
calendar, and also operates on every Saturday and Sunday
from 6.00 a.m. to noon. This is a rendezvous of vendor boats
that carry local food, vegetable, and fruit for selling.
Boat rental services are on offer for travelling to the
villages and fruit orchards around Tha Kha Floating Market.
Visitors wishing to go the Tha Kha Floating Market can go by
car, taking the Highway No. 325 (Samut Songkhram - Bang
Pae), take a right turn at Km. 32 and proceed for another 5
Kilometres You can also take the local buses servicing the
Mae Klong – Damnoen Saduak Route and the Tha Kha - Don Sam
Route from the market in town in front of the Thai Military
Wat Khao Yee San
Wat Khao Yee San
is an old temple. It is believed to have been constructed in
late Ayutthaya period. The interesting attraction is a boat
shaped building (Wihan) situated on top of the mountain.
There, enshrined, are the 4 traces of Lord Buddha’s
Footprints. The Mondop and wooden doors are of a supreme
craftsmanship. There also is Luang Pho Poo Pu Sriracha
Shrine, which is highly revered by all. The worship fair of
Luang Pho Poo Pu Sriracha is held annually in the middle of
The Amphawa district is an
important place and is much involved with Thai history from
the Ayutthaya period to the early Rattanakosin period. In
the past, it was called “Khwaeng Bang Chang”, the
small community prospered in both agriculture and commerce.
There are credible evidences that suggest that during King
Prasatthong era, Kwaeng Bang Chang had a market called “Bang
Chang Market”. Ms. Noi was the head of the market who had a
title of Thao Kaeo Phaluek. She was a member of the Bang
Chang family – a very rich family. Later, the family was
granted the surname of “Na Bang Chang” by the King.
In the year 2303 B.E. (1760), during
the reign of King Ekkathat in the late of Ayutthaya era, he
promoted Nai Thong Duang (later to become King Rama I) to
the position of Luang Yok Krabat governing Mueang
Ratchaburi, the fourth-grade city under Ayutthaya. Later,
Luang Yokkrabat married Khun Nak, a daughter of the rich
Bang Chang family, they settled behind Wat Chulamani. Some
time later, the house was gutted from a fire, so they
relocated to a new house behind Wat Amphawan Chetiyaram,
where they stayed for 3 years.
In 2310 B.E. (1767), the Burmese
conquered Ayutthaya, Luang Yokkrabat and his family escaped
to the deep of the jungles. At that time, Than Kaeo (Somdet
Krom Phra Srisudarak) an elder sister of Luang Yokkrabat
gave birth to a daughter named “Boon Rod” (who later became
Princess Srisuriyenthara Borommarachinee, the queen to King
Rama II). When Phraya Wachiraphrakarn gathered an army and
was able to repel the Burmese, he was crowned as King
Taksin. So Luang Yokkrabat and his family moved back to
At that time, Khun Nak gave birth to
their fourth son, “Chim” (who later became King Rama II).
After that Luang Yokkrabat served King Taksin. He received
the title of Phrarajawarin Chao Krom PhraTamruajnokkwa
, then was promoted to Prince Phrayamahakasatsuek and
later on was crowned as King Rama I, the founder of Chakri
Dynasty. Khun Nak, his wife, was promoted to Queen (Somdej
Amarintharamat). Khun San, Khun Nak’s mother, was promoted
to Princess Phrarubsirisopharkmahanaknari.
But because Queen
Amarintharamat was a native of Bang Chang, she had many
close relatives who owned fruit orchards at Bang Chang. When
promoted to Queen Amarintharamat, she became a noble Bang
Chang. Therefore her relatives are related to the noble Bang
Chang Family. Somdet Phra Amarintharamat always visited her
relatives, so it was called “Suan Nok” which means the
suburb that belonged to members of the queen’s family.
Bangkok, the region of the royal family was called “Suan
Nai”. The catchphrase of “Bang Chang Suan Nork, Bangkok Suan
Nai” was used until the reign of King Rama IV.
Bencharong House is located on Samut Songkhram - Bang Phae
Road. This is where beautiful Bencharong crockery that
represents the exquisite craftsmanship and the beauty of
Thai Art, are produced. The Bancharong crockery is suitable
for household use as well as for house decoration. Visitors
could see the Bencharong crockery production process.
King Rama II Memorial Park
This park was built under the
project to honour King Rama II, run by the King Rama II
Phraboromrachanusorn Foundation under royal patronage. It is
built to commemorate his great patron to the arts and
culture, which become a national heritage. Phra
Rajsamutmatee, the abbot of Wat Amphawan Chetiyaram, offered
the area of 11 Rais (4.4 acres) for the construction of the
park. This area was very important because it was a royal
birthplace King Rama II.
In the park, there are many places of
interest including King Rama II Museum - 4 buildings built
in traditional Thai architectural style. The museum displays
the ancient art objects dating back to early Rattanakosin
era, the lifestyle of the Thais during King Rama II period.
Other attractions are: Ho Klang (main hall) houses
the statue of King Rama II and artefacts. Ho Non Chai
depicts the Thai man’s lifestyle. Ho Non Ying depicts
the Thai woman’s lifestyle. Chan Ruean (corridor)
depicts the traditional Thai style house. Kitchen and
Bathroom depicts the traditional Thai kitchen style and
bathroom of the middle class. Furthermore, there is an
out-door theatre, a botanical garden containing various
species of trees found in Thai literature, shops selling
local goods and various kinds of fruit.
take Highway No. 35 (Thonburi - Pak Tho route), at Km. 63
marker, turn right to Highway No. 325 for another 6
Kilometres (pass through the Samu Songkram town), drive on
another 1 kilometre on a left side to the park. From Samut
Songkhram town, there is Bang Mun Nak Line bus, catch it at
the Mueang Municipality Market. The park and museum are open
daily from 09.00-18.00. The Admission is 5 baht for
children, and 10 Baht for adults.
Contact tel: 0-3475-1367, 0-3475-1666 for more information.
Orchid Farm is located on Samut Songkhram - Bang Phae Road.
It is a tourist stopping point with a beautiful orchid farm
and butterfly farms. It is open from 08.00.-11.00.
Wat Amphawan Chetiyaram
is located near King Rama II Memorial Park. This temple
belongs to the Bang Chang family. It was constructed by
Princess Phrarubsirisopharkmahanaknari, the mother of Queen
Amarintharamat. The area behind this temple was the
residence of Luang Yokkrabat and Khun Nak. It is believed
that area about the position of the chedi at present of Wat
Amphawan is the place where Khun Nak gave birth to a son
(Khun Chim) who later became King Rama II.
Later, Wat Amphawan was
renovated by King Rama III, IV, and V. At present it is a
second class royal monastery. The beautiful main building
and precious antiques inside the temple are of an early
Rattanakosin period architectural and arts style.
Wat Phummarin Kudi Thong
This temple is located on the
bank of Mae Klong River, on the west side of the end of
Phrachachuen canal’s mouth. It is accessible by boat from
Wat Amphawan pier or King Rama II Memorial Park pier. An
interesting attraction in the temple is the Kudee Thong
(golden hermitage). According to a legend, Khun Nak’s
millionaire father asked the abbot of Wat Bang Li to
foretell Khun Nak’s fortune. The abbot predicted that Khun
Nak would become a Queen. Khun Nak’s father then vowed that
he will build the golden hermitage for Wat Bang Li if the
prediction came true, hence the reason for the name of Wat
Ban Li Kudi Thong. Later, Wat Bang Li was flooded and part
of the land was gouged out by water, so the KudiThong was
taken down and reconstructed at this temple.
From Amphoe Mueang Samut
Songkhram town, visitors could travel by boat to see scenic
views of Mae Klong riverside. Along the banks of the Mae
Klong, there are coconut groves and ancient style Thai
houses, which are rare nowadays, in the areas of Tambon Kwae
Om and Tambon Mueang Mai. The adjacent areas of Amphoe
Amphawa and Amphoe Bang Khonthi features lychee orchards.
The lychee contest is held yearly from April to May.
Khai Bang Kung
Khai Bang Kung is
located at Mu 4, Tambon Bang Kung. It is a famous old Naval
Forces Camp that is etched into Thai history. It was a
location of great strategic importance to and great heroism
of the Mae Klong people over invaders during late Ayutthaya
going on to the Thonburi periods. Both Thai and Chinese
soldiers, under the leadership of King Taksin The Great,
annihilated and repelled the invading Burmese army. This
powerful camp was indeed feared by the Burmese.
Khai Bang Kung (Bang Kung
Camp) was left deserted for almost 200 years. Then , in
1967, the Ministry of Education established a Boy Scout camp
here in honour of King Taksin The Great. King Taksin’s
Shrine was also built to commemorate his historic deeds. The
Shrine erecting ceremony was held on June 20, 1968. The old
Wat Bot and Wat Bang Kung are also located in this Camp
area. Within the main building is a large stucco Buddha
image that locals called Luang Pho Bot Noi. There are also
murals of late Ayutthaya period depicting the story of Lord
Buddha’s life. Getting there: take the route of Samut
Songkhram - Bang Nok Khwaek (the same route to King Rama II
Memorial Park). Before reaching the Church of the Virgin
Mary, take a left turn to cross the Somdet Phra Ammarin
Bridge, and then turn left again and continue for another 10
The Church of the Virgin Mary or Asanawihan Maephrabangkerd
This church is located at Mu 7, Tambon Bang Nok Khwaek. The
church is a holy worshipping place for Christian families
living around the area. It was constructed in 1890 A.D. by
Father Paolo Salmone,
a French Missionary. The construction of the church took 6
years. Built in French Gothic architectural style. The
windows are decorated with stained glass. Within the church,
there is a Statue, a pulpit, a holy water basin, various
kinds of candelabra, and carvings depicting various
historical points in the Bible.
It is located about 100 metres
further from Somdet Phra Ammarin Bridge. You can also get
there by renting a long-tailed boat from the pier at Amphoe
Sam Phran District Office.
Wat Charoen Sukharam Worawihan and Fish Sanctuary
This temple is located at Bang
Nok Khwaek and about 4 Kilometres from Amphoe Mueang. Luang
Pho Toa Buddha image, which is highly revered by people, is
enshrined in the main building (Ubosot). The body of the
Buddha image is made of laterite and cast in the attitude of
Subduing Mara of Sukhothai period style. Measuring 178 cms.
wide at the lap and 208 cms. high from the base to the tip
of the tonsure. In front of the temple, there are various
kinds of fish in the stream, especially silver and red-tail
tinfoil barbs. To get there, take the Samut Songkhram - Bang
Nok Khwaek Route, passing the Church of the Virgin Mary,
cross the Bang Nok Khwaek Bridge and then turn right onto an
access road for 500 metres.