Sukhothai Travel Guide, Sukhothai Travel Information, Sukhothai Thailand

larger text smaller
welcome to Sukhothai
Introduction
Found in the 13th century, Sukhothai (literally means Dawn of Happiness) was the first truly independent Thai Kingdom, which enjoyed a golden age under King Ramkhamhaeng, credited with creating the Thai alphabet. The superb temples and monuments of this great city have been lovingly restored in Sukhothai Historical Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a must-see for all travellers.

Sukhothai is located on the lower edge of the northern region, 427 kilometres north of Bangkok or some 298 kilometres south of Chiang Mai. The province covers some 6,596 square kilometres and is divided into 9 Amphoes: Muang Sukhothai, Ban Dan Lan Hoi, Khiri Mat, Kong Krailat, Sawankhalok, Si Nakhon, Si Samrong, Si Satchanalai and Thung Saliam.
Borders
North : Phrae and Uttaradit
South : Kamphaeng Phet and Phitsanulok
East : Phitsanulok and Uttaradit
West : Tak and Lamphang
Distance
Distances to Other Provinces
Phitsanulok 58 km Uttaradit 104 km
Kamphaengphet 85 km Phrae 167 km
Tak 78 km Lampang 205 km

Distances from Amphoe Mueang to Other Districts
Si Samrong 20 km Sawankhalok 39 km
Kong Krailat 26 km Si Nakhon 49 km
Khiri Mat 28 km Si Satchanalai 65 km
Ban Dan Lan Hoi 29 km Thung Saliam 68 km
Festivals & Events
Phor Khun Ramkhamhaeng’s Day Festival
When: January
Where: Monument of Phor Khun Ramkamhaeng
Phor Khun Ramkhamhaeng’s Day Festival, annually held on January 17. It honors of the Great King of Sukhothai Kingdom. In this day, people will visit the Monument of Phor Khun Ramkamhaeng the Great for praising Phor Khun Ramkhamhaeng. People will make merit and present food to a Buddhist priest. At night, there is merrymaking and many shows that all people can enjoy.
Phra Mae Ya Homage Paying Fair and Sukhothai Red Cross Fair
When: February
Where: Sukhothai City Hall
This is held at the beginning of February every year around the Sukhothai City Hall, Nirakasem Road, Tambon Thani. A procession paying homage to Phra Mae Ya, a local sports competition, an exhibition, a local handicraft demonstration and entertainment, are held.
Si Satchanalai Elephant Back Ordination Procession
When: April
Where: Ban Hat Siao, Amphoe Si Satchanalai
A traditional ceremony of the Thai Phuan, citizens of Ban Hat Siao, Si Satchanalai Elephant Back Ordination Procession or Buat Chang is held annually during 7–8 April at Ban Hat Siao, Amphoe Si Satchanalai. The 7th is the crux of the event, when a procession takes place. On the 8th features a spectacular procession of ordination candidates in colourful costumes on the backs of some 20-30 decorated elephants. The ordination ceremony includes head shaving, bathing, and dressing up candidates, as well as, elephants. The procession is held around the village and the Si Satchanalai District Office.
Songkran and Mueang Sawankhalok Festival
When: April
Where: Along Yom River, Wat Sawang Arom, Amphoe Sawankhalok
This takes place during 11–15 April annually on the bank of the Yom River, in front of Wat Sawang Arom, by the Yom River, and at the Stadium of the Sawankhalok Municipal School. The procession of Miss Songkran, the Sawankhalok Food Festival, ceremonies of giving alms to monks and bathing rituals for Buddha images and monks are performed in the festival.
Hae Nam Khuen Hong Festival
When: April
Where: The plaza of Chaopho Mueang Dong Monument
This is organized annually during 18 – 19 April at the plaza of Chaopho Mueang Dong Monument, Tambon Ban Tuek, Amphoe Si Satchanalai. The ceremony is held to honour "Muen Nakhon" or "Chaopho Mueang Dong", the establisher of Dong City. He was talented and courageous, as well as specialized in catching elephants and utilising them in war. Later, he was executed to prove his loyalty to King Tilokkarat. Then, the villagers organized a ceremony to pay homage to Chaopho Mueang Dong by preparing a more-than-50-elephant parade wonderfully decorated, passing the village to pay respect to the shrine of Chaopho Khao Mung and onward to the plaza of Chaopho Mueang Dong Monument to pay homage to Chaopho Mueang Dong.
Song Nam Aui Than Festival
When: April
Where: Sri Sathanalai Historical Park
is annually held on April 12, Songkran Ceremony in the SriSathanalai Historical Park. It exhibits the Buddha image procession from Wat Phra Prang to the Historical Park for people who want to pour the water over the Buddha image.
Si Sachanalai Ordination Celebration
When: April
Where: Ban Hat Sieo, Ampher Si Sachanalai
is called by Thais as "Buat Chang Hat Siao", held annually during 7–8 April at Ban Hat Sieo, Ampher Si Sachanalai. It features a spectacular procession of ordination candidates in colourful costumer on the backs of some 20-30 decorated elephants.
Sukhothai Loi Krathong and Candle Festival
When: November
Where: Sukhothai Historical Park
The tradition derived from traditional beliefs common to communities living along the banks of a river or waterway. It has become a need to worship and supplicate the Khongkla to avoid bad luck, to worship the gods in the Brahmin tradition, or to revere the Buddha's footprint. The celebrations are normally organized in the 12th month when the tide is high and the air is cool. Sukhothai's Loi Krathong is held annually on the full moon night of the 12th lunar month at the Sukhothai Historical Park. The Krathongs, or floats, have been made in the form of lotus. There is also a reference, in the Sila Charuek, to candle lighting and playing with firework in a grand festival believed to be similar to the candle lighting and firework as practiced in the current Loi Krathongs Festival. In this festival, there are Nang Nopphamat procession, exhibitions, lighting of lantern at the historical site, Loi Krathong, fireworks over all waterways, and Krathong competition.
Khao Luang Winning Day
When: November
Where: Ramkhamhaeng National Park
This is a yearly event that Sukhothai province has organized for tourists and the local people to climb up to the summit of Khao Luang in the Ramkhamhaeng National Park, Amphoe Khiri Mat. The event is held around November every year.