A suggested itinerary
Most of Lopburi’s historical sites can be strung together in an easy-to-follow walking route that will take the better part of a day.
Wake up early and head into the centre of the old town, perhaps grabbing a snack in the municipal market off Ratchadamnoen before hopping over to the Phra Narai Ratchaniwet main gate on nearby Sorasak. This combined palace and museum is the largest and, in our opinion, most interesting attraction in Lopburi, so it makes sense to start here and take as much time as you need.
Cut south down Sorasak and hang a left (north) after a couple of hundred metres on a narrow lane just after you pass Petracha Road -- the ruins of Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat will come into view about halfway up. You’ll emerge at the back of this sprawling set of ruins; stroll around either side to the front gate across from the train station on Na Phrakan.
From Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat, strike north on Na Phrakan and grab lunch at one of the many places to eat in the heart of town. Continue north and cross the street to find the entrance to Wat Nakhon Kosa, a minor site that’s only worth a quick stop. From here it’s an easy hop north to San Phra Kan shrine -- watch out for traffic and monkeys!
San Phra Kan is located within sight of Phra Prang Sam Yod, which is impossible to miss along a road of the same name to the south. Watch monkeys lumber around this impressive Khmer site before keeping west to the small Prang Khaek. Continue straight west and you’ll come to Ban Wichayen, a site that’s often overlooked but is worth a look for the one-of-a-kind ruins displaying elements of European and Thai design.
Cross the street in front of Ban Wichayen and head south on Rue de France Road. Within 100 metres you’ll come to the east gate of Wat Sao Thong Thong, an ancient but active temple with a spread of centuries-old halls that may have once served as churches or mosques. Don’t miss the big Buddha image in a wihaan set in the northwestern corner of the complex.
From here you can exit Wat Sao Thong Thong through the western gate, which puts you on colourful Phra Ram Road. Turn right (north) and you’ll pass a large Chinese shrine, San Luk Son, before coming to a bridge on the left -- stroll out for a good view of the leaning Luang Por Saeng Chedi to the north. Double back and hang a left (west) down Tha Khun Nang, a narrow alley lined with venerable shophouses.
Cut right (east) for a moment at the northern end of Tha Khun Nang and then hang a quick left (north). Before long you’ll come to a larger bridge on the left that leads straight over to Wat Mani Chonlakan and the unusual tiered chedi that you saw a little earlier from the other bridge. The chedi is worth an up-close look, though you may be distracted by views of the fishing nets and old houses lining the Lopburi River.
And that should be plenty for one day. Head back east into the bustling commercial part of town before turning left (south) on Surasongkhram Road, which comes out at Prang Khaek after about half a kilometre.
David Luekens first came to Thailand in 2005 when Thai friends from his former home of Burlington, Vermont led him on a life-changing trip. Based in Thailand since 2011, he spends much of his time eating in Bangkok street markets and island hopping the Andaman Sea.
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.
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