Ayothaya Elephant Village
101 , Moo 7 , Pailing
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In the reign of King Naresuan, as King Ekathosarot sailed along the Chao Phraya River, he got shipwrecked on his way back. He swam to the "Lane Island" where he met his concubine named "In". Later she gave birth to a son who was looked after by Phrayasithumathirat. Some historian said that the boy became King Songthum. In 1632 King Phrasat Thong had delicated his old residence to construct the Chumphon Nikayaram Temple, then had a pond dug , and Phra Thinang Aisawan Thiphaya At was constructed.

The name "Bang - Pa - In" originated from the name of " Prince In", an out throne son of King Phrasat Thong, who performed the tonsorial ceremony on this island.

Bang - Pa - In Island was the place for the Royal Barge Procession of King Rachathibodi who governed Ayutthaya City. However, when the new capital was established in Bangkok, Bang - Pa - In Palace was deserted for over 80 years. It was only during King Rama IV's reign that Bang - Pa - In Palace was again visited by kings. King Rama IV stayed there and had a house built in the old palace compound. His son, King Rama V who liked the place, constructed the royal palace in 1872 as it is seen and went to stay there every year by boat or by special train. The palace consists of 5 Royal Residences (Phra Thinang) as; Phra Thinang Aisawan Thipaya At, Phra Thinang Warophat Phiman, Phra Thinang Wehart Chumrun, Phra Thinang Withun Tasana and Phra Thinang Uthayan Phumisathian.

The Royal Palace and Bang Pa-In has a history dating back to the 17th century. According to a chronicle of Ayutthaya, King Prasat Thong (1629 - 1656) had a palace constructed on Bang Pa-In Island in the Chao Phraya River. A contemporary Dutch merchant, Jeremias van Vliet, reported that King Prasat Thong was an illegitimate son of King Ekathotsarot (1605 - 1610/11), who in his youth was shipwrecked on that Island and had son by a woman who be friended him. The boy grew up to become a Chief Minister. After having usurped the throne, he became known as King Prasat Thong.
The King founded a monastery, Wat Chumphon Nikayaram, on the land belonging to his mother on Bang Pa-In Island, and then had a pond dug a palace built to the south of that monastery. The chronicle records the name of only one building, the Aisawan Thiphayaart Royal Residence, which was constructed in 1632, the year of the birth of his son, the future King Narai (1656 - 1688). It is not known whether or not the palace was in use till the fall of Ayutthaya in 1767.
However by 1807, when the Kingdom's best known poet, Sunthon Phu, sailed past Bang Pa-In, only a memory of the palace remained, for the site was neglected and overgrown.
The palace was revived by King Rama IV of the Chakri dynasty, better known in the West as King Mongkut (1851 - 1868), who had temporary residence constructed on the outer Island that because the site of the Neo-Gothic style monastery, Wat Niwet Thamprawat, which was built by his son and their, King Chulalongkorn (Rama V).
The present-day royal palace dates from the reign of King Chulalongkorn (1868 - 1910), when most of the buildings standing today were constructedbetween 1872 - 1889.
Today the palace is used occasionally by Their Majesties King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) and Queen Sirikit as a residence and for holding receptions and banquets.
          



Bang - Pa - In Palace
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