The historic city of Ayutthaya was once the ancient capital of Siam. It was partially destroyed in the 18th century, but several stunning temples and statues still remain, which make it well worthwhile for a day trip from Bangkok.
This is the Wat Phra Si Sanphet, the temple of the royal family; no monks lived there.The Wat was used exclusively for royal ceremonies.
In 1767, the Burmese conquered the capital of Ayutthaya and began the extensive destruction and looting of numerous temples and other buildings, including the Wat Phra Si Sanphet. They set the building on fire and melted the gold. The three Chedis were destroyed in the process, but restoration work began in 1956.