Bike for Dad Route (total 29 kilometres)
Somdet Phra Pokklao Bridge is one of the main bridges crossing the Chao Phraya river in Bangkok. It joins Chakphet Road in Phra Nakhon district on the Bangkok side (east) of the river with Prajadhipok Road in Khlong San district on the Thon Buri side (west) of the river. It was built to relieve traffic congestion from Saphan Phut (Memorial Bridge), the main bridge across the river in the old days. Currently the bridge is maintained by the Department of Rural Roads.
Arun Amarin Bridge is the name of the flyover which runs above Somdet Phra Pinklao Road at the Arun Amarin intersection. It curves towards the north east into Bang Phlat district, running parallel with the Borommaratchachonnani flyover, passing Wat Amornkiri and ending at the foot of Rama VIII Bridge.
The bridge, locally known as “Pinklao Bridge”, is another main bridge across the Chao Phraya river. It joins Phra Nakhon district on the Bangkok side of the river with Bangkok Noi district on the Thon Buri side. This six-lane, continuous-beam, reinforced concrete bridge, was built in cooperation with the Government of Japan in 1971 in order to accommodate the rapid growth of Bangkok. It was named to honour King Pinklao (Phrabat Somdet Phra Pinklao Chao Yuhua), who was “the Second King of Siam” and Heir Apparent during the reign of King Mongkut (Rama IV). The Bridge runs past the area which used to be his palace ground.
Wat Prayurawongsawas Waraviharn, also known as Wat Prayoon, is a temple built by Somdet Chao Phya Borom Maha Prayoorawongse (Dit Bunnag), one of the most senior courtiers in the reign of King Rama III and IV. In 1828 AD, when Somdet Chao Phraya Borom Maha Prayurawong was simultaneously the Secretary of Treasury (เจ้าพระยาพระคลัง), acting Secretary of Trade and Foreign Affairs (ว่าที่กรมท่า), and Chief of Defense (สมุหพระกลาโหม), he donated a large coffee orchard to house a monastery, a philanthropic act common of Thai nobles in the old days. Four years later, the construction of the monastery was completed and it was presented to King Rama III for his royal patronage. The monastery is enclosed by an impressive wrought iron wall, decorated with “thirty thousand axes – three cannons – three-hundred thousand spears”. The monastery also houses “Khao Mo” a miniature mountain and rock garden surrounded by small chedis, stupas, and pavilions, which has become an oasis of peace in the busy district.
In 1825, Chaophraya Nikonbodin (To), ancestor of the Kalyanamitra family and acting Chief Minister, donated his old house and nearby land to be the location of a temple. Previously some Chinese monks had been residing there and it later was refrred to as the Kudee Chin Village. The temple later came under the royal patronage of King Nangklao (Rama III). His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej graciously named the temple “Wat Kalyanamitra”, and the temple was given royal status. His Majesty also graciously commanded the construction of a royal vihara and the presiding Buddha image name “Phra Buddha Trai Rattana Nayok”, also commonly known as “Luang Po To” (The Big Buddha), to evoke the atmosphere of Thailand’s former capital city, Ayutthaya, where a Big Buddha was situated outside the city wall, as was the case at Wat Phananchoeng.
Wat Rakang Kositaram, formerly known as “Wat Bang Wah Yai”, is an old temple from the time when (Krung Sri) Ayutthaya was the capital of the country. It was built around the same time as another old temple, “Wat Bang Wah Noi” or Wat Amarintraram. In 1767, Ayutthaya was conquered and destroyed by Burma. King Taksin the Great liberated the country, crowned himself the King of Siam and established a new capital city called Krung Thon Buri on 26 December 1768.
After his accession to the Throne in 1769, King Taksin turned his attention to the restoration of Buddhism. He became the patron of Wat Bang Wah Yai, and raised it from a civil temple status to a royal temple status. He also bemoaned the sad fact that the Tripitaka was probably scattered around the country as many of the royal temples and buildings were burnt down during the war with Burma. King Taksin therefore announced his intention to recompile and revise the Tripitaka. The King sought after the Tripitaka from Nakhon Si Thammarat, which was still intact as the city had not been attacked by the Burmese, and which coincided with King Taksin’s plan to proceed to wage a war on that city. After the war, King Taksin met a monk, the Venerable (“Pra Ajarn”) Si, who had resided at Wat Panancheong in Krung Sri Ayutthaya. Phra Ajarn Si was well versed in the studies of the Tripitaka and a master of meditation. He had fled to Nakhon Si Thammarat after the fall of Ayutthaya. After King Taksin’s success in collecting the Tripitaka from Nakhon Si Thammarat, Phra Ajarn Si was invited to return to Thon Buri, then the capital city, where the King assigned Wat Bang Wah Yai under his care. King Taksin also elevated him to the rank of Somdet Phra Sangharaja, the Supreme Patriarch of Thailand’s Buddhist priests.
Wat Arunratchawararam was established during the Ayutthaya period (14th – 17th century A.D.). It is located on the left bank of the Chao Phraya river. The temple was formerly known as Wat Makok, to mirror the name of the local district “Bang Makok”, where it is located. It was later nicknamed the “Outer Wat Makok” as the locals built a newer temple with the same name, which was then called “Inner Wat Makok”, in the same district.
When King Taksin succeeded in expelling the Burmese in B.E. 2310 (1767 A.D.), he decided to move the capital southwards. His army travelled down the Chao Phraya river, arriving in Krung Thon Buri at dawn, right in front of Wat Makok. King Taksin chose this 17th century Wat for the location of his royal temple and palace, and renamed it “Wat Jaeng”, which literally means the Temple of Dawn.
In a royal correspondence, Prince Damrong Rajanubhab told his brother, Prince Narisara Nuvattiwongse, that “… I have seen a map of Thon Buri made by the French during the reign of King Narai [of Ayuttaya]. It marked only “Wat Leab” and “Wat Jaeng”, therefore “Wat Bhodi” must have been built after King Narai’s reign…”
When King Taksin built his palace and royal temple within the vicinity of “Wat Jaeng”, the Wat got subsumed into the royal palace grounds. So the temple was established without monks, as it was not customary to have monks residing within the palace ground.
1. Chulalongkorn is the only university in Thailand that does not begin with the Thai word for “university”.
2. Chulalongkorn is the only university in Thailand without a nameplate, only signs that mark its land area.
3. Chulalongkorn University was first established as a college by King Chulalongkorn (Rama V). King Vajiravudh (Rama VI) elevated it to a university, and presided over the foundation stone laying ceremony.
4. King Vajiravudh, in a deep expression of his filial love, declared that the college be called “Chulalongkorn University” in honour of his father, King Chulalongkorn. The Thai spelling of the name “Chulalongkorn” slightly changed when Field Marshall Plaek Pibulsonggram was Prime Minister of Thailand, the period during which the Thai language’s spelling and pronunciation were amended.
5. King Vajiravudh decreed that all future Thai monarchs, like himself, must become the patron of this university. This first university of Thailand has therefore graciously received the Royal Patronage of 5 Thai monarchs.
6. The university received its original funding from the remaining sum of the money which had been contributed by ordinary citizens to erect the equestrian statue of King Chulalongkorn the Great. The funding was therefore affectionately called “a horse-tail fund”.