Waking up in Ayutthaya we were given fresh Thai fruit for breakfast and eggs. We grabbed a tuk tuk to have a look at the temples (too hot to cycle!) and visited Wat Chaiwatthanaram which is just on the outskirts of Ayutthaya. It was absolutely stunning and after paying the entrance fee (50 baht) we wandered around the stupas and marvelled that a building built in the 1600s could look this good- minus a few now headless buddhas. As a UNESCO world heritage site it has been so well preserved and a really spectacular insight into how the old city must have been so important as the capital of Siam. The next temple we visited (saw many as we drove past but not as intact as the first one) was Wat Maha That which is popular due to the lakes surrounding it which are full of carp and visited by many birds including a mysterious unidentifiable black-blue tipped bird. It's also mostly visited for a beautiful sandstone bust of Buddha which has been engulfed by a tree's roots!
We both found it way too hot for more temples and headed back to the hotel to refresh however our refreshing showers made us nice and clean but because of the humidity we ended up feeling hot and damp. Thankfully the hotel ordered us an a/c taxi to catch our next train to Lopburi at 2pm- bliss!
Another wonderful Thai train journey, people walk through the carriages selling food and cold drinks one lady was selling what looked like a bag of just boiled eggs and soy sauce. At one train stop shop vendors came hopping across the tracks to sell at the windows and the two Thai men sat next to us kindly bought us two little cups filled with coconut ice-cream/slushy, I think they thought we looked hot!
We arrived in Lopburi just after 3.30, walking across the road we spotted the first area of Thai history the 'Royal Palace of Phra Narai Ratcha Nivet' we were just to hot and sadly walked right past into the shade. Only a minute further down the road and Tobes spotted a strange looking dog only it was a monkey (or ling in Thai)! There were monkeys everywhere at least a thousand. They were officially fed twice a day to deter biting and seemed pretty happy with their fruit load which they subsized by chancing it in shops and stalls and stealing drinks- we saw one with a drink of yakult in its paws.
The main sight is Wat Phra Prang Sam Yot (also 50 baht entry) and has 3 prangs on top and chapels inside you can go inside- inside we saw bats nesting! Outside there were lots of monkeys, we were wary of them as we looked around but they seemed unfazed by us. That was until one tried to jump on Toby and another one on me, I waved a big bottle of water at it to warn it off but it grabbed onto the bottle and wrestled it from me! I would have been braver had I have had my rabies shot. The monkey soon worked the lid off and picked up the bottle with both paws, humanlike and drank. At least somebody had a refreshing drink.
We cooled down in an a/c cafe and enjoyed the cheap 12 Baht Pepsi and some spring rolls (delicious!) and prawn noodles. A bit more refreshed we went back to the palace we'd passed earlier. We walked around at night and it looked magical lit up, we even spotted a couple of owls and more bats!
After a huge Singha beer in the hottest beer on Earth (dripping!) we boarded the night train to Chiang Mai in the North. The Thais are keen on checking tickets, we had ours checked 4 times! Although can't complain when a 10 hour train ride in an air conditioned sleeper carriage is only 800 Baht (under 20 pounds!) Good night and bring on Chiang Mai