Published/Last edited or updated: 16th June, 2016
Boasting 32 stucco elephant sculptures surrounding a large bell-shaped chedi, Wat Chang Lom is a minor site that’s worth a quick stop if you have the time.
Rimmed by trees and a moat, the large brick chedi’s square base sports some of the most striking elephant images found anywhere in Sukhothai and related cities. Even those that have fallen apart still display gentle eyes on heads that often rest on broken trunks, looking peaceful in their venerable ages. A handful of the sculptures were touched up during restorations and now stand complete with ears, trunks and tusks.
There’s not much else to see here apart from some brick walls, spirit houses, broken Buddha images and laterite pillars in the remains of a small wihaan. Now featured in the Ramkamhaeng National Museum, a stone inscription that was found here details the good deeds of a 14th-century nobleman.
Isolated from all other sites and tricky to find on the east side of the Mae Lam Phan Canal, Wat Chang Lom is easily overlooked. Though the best elephant sculptures are found here, you’ll also find some at Wat Sorasak, located near Wat Phra Phai Luang in the northern zone.
Heading east for around a kilometre from the central zone on Jarod Vithithong Road, look for a small faded blue sign pointing left (north) down a side lane, and then a right turn will take you to Wat Chang Lom, which stands directly behind Legendha Resort. Admission is free.
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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