|— Province —|
Map of Thailand highlighting Nakhon Sawan Province
|Capital||Nakhon Sawan city|
|- Governor||Kawi Kittisathaphon (since October 2009)|
|- Total||9,597.7 km2 (3,705.7 sq mi)|
|Area rank||Ranked 20th|
|- Density||113.6/km2 (294.2/sq mi)|
|Population rank||Ranked 15th|
|Population density rank||Ranked 42nd|
|Time zone||Thailand Standard Time (UTC+7)|
|ISO 3166 code||TH-60|
Nakhon Sawan (Thai: นครสวรรค์) is one of the provinces (changwat) of Thailand. Neighboring Provinces are (from north clockwise) Kamphaeng Phet, Phichit, Phetchabun, Lop Buri, Sing Buri, Chai Nat, Uthai Thani and Tak.
The Ping and Nan rivers merge near the city of Nakhon Sawan to form the Chao Phraya River. The Mae Wong National Park on the border with Khamphaeng Phet province was created in 1987 to preserve the Mae Wong-Mae Poen jungle.
Bueng Boraphet is the largest freshwater swamp in Thailand, in total covering 212 km². The swamp is located directly east of the town Nakhon Sawan and extends into the districts Tha Tako and Chum Saeng. During the winter months many waterfowls migrate there. Parts of the swamp are protected as a non-hunting area.
Nakhon Sawan was a city since Dvaravati era. While part of the Sukhothai kingdom, it was called Mueang Phra Bang, the southern frontier city of Sukhothai. Later within the Ayutthaya kingdom it was an important trade center because of its location at the two major rivers from the north. It also was the common meeting point of Burmese troops before moving to attack Ayutthaya. In the reign of King Taksin the Great, Phra Bang became a Siamese military base to prevent further Burmese attacks.
When King Mongkut signed the Bowring Treaty with Britain the glorious time of Nakhon Sawan began, as it became the main rice and teak trading center. However the opening of the Northern railway in 1922, the economic crisis before 1932 revolution, and finally the opening of Dejativongse bridge and Phahonyothin highway in 1950 each decreased the importance of water transportation and thus made Nakhon Sawan less important.
The 4th Infantry Regiment of the 3rd Area Army is based in Nakhon Sawan. It is in charge of the northwestern border with Burma, from Mae Hong Son in the north to Kanchanaburi in the south.
|The provincial seal shows a Wiman, a mythological castle located in heaven. This relates to the name of the province which translates to Heavenly City.
The provincial tree as well as the flower is Lagerstroemia loudonii (Loudon's crape myrtle).
Bung Boraphet (บึงบอระเพ็ด) is the largest freshwater swamp in Thailand. Some parts of the swamp have been declared the Bung Boraphet Non-Hunting Area under the care of the Wildlife Conservation Division. Bung Boraphet is also a fish breeding ground where the Department of Fisheries has set up the Bung Boraphet Fishery Development Station.
Wat Woranat Banphot or Wat Khao Kop (วัดวรนาถบรรพต หรือ วัดเขากบ): The peak has a replica of Lord Buddha’s Footprint and a pagoda encasing the relic of Lord Buddha built when Sukhothai was the country’s capital. The temple was praised by the Department of Religious Affairs as the best development temple of 1966.
Utthayan Sawan (อุทยานสวรรค์) is a beautiful public park in Nakhon Sawan Municipality beside the Asian Highway. It was originally a large swamp with an area of 502,400 square meters called Nong Som Bun. The middle of the park is an island with an area of 6,400 square meters.
Wat Chom Khiri Nat Phrot (วัดจอมคีรีนาคพรต): The most interesting objects here are a replica of the Lord Buddha’s Footprint and a convocation hall that locals call "Bot Thewada Sang".
Wat Si Sawan Sangkharam or Wat Thu Nam (วัดศรีสวรรค์สังฆาราม หรือ วัดถือน้ำ) is an old temple that was used as the site for government officials to pledge allegiance to the king. Wat Si Sawan Sangkharam is regarded as an old temple with immense historical value.
Chao Pho Thepharak-Chao Mae Thapthim Shrine (ศาลเจ้าพ่อเทพารักษ์-เจ้าแม่ทับทิม): The shrine is revered by locals and is the spiritual magnet of the people in the area as well as passers-by using the river.
The Origin of the Chao Phraya River (ต้นแม่น้ำเจ้าพระยา) is the point where the Ping and Nan rivers converge. Here, one can clearly distinguish the difference between the two rivers. The Nan River is reddish in colour while the Ping River is somewhat green.
Wat Kriang Krai Klang (วัดเกรียงไกรกลาง): Inside is a Sukhothai-style bronze Buddha image in the Man Wichai posture and an old hall of over a hundred years of age. There is also a replica of Lord Buddha’s Footprint and a mural of Lord Buddha’s life.
Tham Bo Ya (ถ้ำบ่อยา): The cave itself has 3 sections. The first has a large main Buddha image. The second, further in, is a dead end with a pond called Bo Nam Thip that is believed by locals to be sacred. The third section is an exit out the other way.
Nakhon Sawan Provincial Cultural Building (หอวัฒนธรรมจังหวัดนครสวรรค์) is the centre of historical, archaeological and cultural information of the province. The building has an exhibition room displaying cultural development and various archaeological sites.
Chan Sen Ancient City and Chan Sen Museum (จันเสนเมืองโบราณ และ พิพิธภัณฑ์วัดจันเสน): A number of artifacts have been discovered in the ancient city; earthenware items, stone items, metal objects and bronze objects. All of the objects are now kept at Chan Sen Museum in Chan Sen Temple.
Wat Tham Phon Sawan (วัดถ้ำพรสวรรค์): At the rear of the temple is Phon Sawan Cave which is divided into 2 sections. The first section is a small room while the second section is a larger room with Buddha images and various structures such as a replica waterfall with a stream in the cave’s centre.
Wat Bang Pramung Floating Market (ตลาดน้ำวัดบางประมุง) is on the bank of Bang Pramung Canal in front of Wat Bang Pramung, about 14 kilometres from the city on the Nakhon Sawan-Krok Phra road.
Wat Bang Mafo (วัดบางมะฝ่อ): The most striking aspect is the main hall that has unique doors and windows designed by the monk Luang Pho Sun. The main Buddha image in the Man Wichai posture is strange in that it also holds a palm-leaf fan. Under the multi-tiered roof is a lovely replica of Lord Buddha’s Footprint.
Khao Tham Phra (เขาถ้ำพระ): Inside are stalactites, stalagmites and Buddha images. During the Songkran Festival locals will take flowers, candles and incense sticks up the 100 steps from the foot of the hill to pay homage to the images.
Khao No-Khao Kaeo (เขาหน่อ-เขาแก้ว) is a limestone mountain that has Wat Khao Lo at its foot. There are numerous monkeys at the foot of the mountain and you can see plenty of bats that live in the cave flying out to feed in the evening, making a long black line in the night sky.
Khok Mai Den Ancient City (บ้านโคกไม้เดน): Traces of the old city wall remain and an artefact in the form of a sculpture of the elephant Phaya Chatthan was discovered here. It is over 1,000 years old. The word "Khok Mai Den" refers to a kind of tree.
Mae Wong National Park (อุทยานแห่งชาติแม่วงก์): The area consists of winding mountains and is the source of several waterways, including the Mae Wong River and some parts of Khlung Canal. Attractions in Mae Wong National Park Kaeng Pha Khoi Nang-Kaeng Nam
Bon Kaeo Hin (แก่งผานางคอย-แก่งน้ำบนเขาหิน) is on the Khlong Lan-Um Phang road and 1.4 kilometres from the park headquarters and another 400 meters on a secondary road. This is a large brook that Khlung Canal flows through.
The View point (จุดชมวิว) is on the Khlong Lan-Um Phang road at the 81km marker. At the 93km marker, about 28 kilometres from the headquarters, is an area between mountains that is perpetually breezy with an average temperature below 20 degrees Celsius.
Namtok Nang Nuan (น้ำตกนางนวล): This waterfall is located amidst the lush jungle. It has 4 levels.
Namtok Mae Krasa (น้ำตกแม่กระสา) is a large 9-level waterfall about 900 meters high. The waterfall is formed by streams from high-altitude jungles on the Thanon Thong Chai Mountain Range.
Namtok Mae Riwa (น้ำตกแม่เรวา) is a waterfall located around 21 kilometres from the headquarters.
Mokochu Peak (ยอดเขาโมโกจู) is the highest peak in the park. It is 1,964 meters above sea level and is located about 50 kilometres from the headquarters.
Kaeng Lan Nok Yung (แก่งลานนกยูง) is a brook with a wide rock plateau. Mae Wong River, which originates in Mae Wong Forest flows through it. It is about 800 meters from Mae Rewa Forest Protection Unit.
Chao Pho-Chao Mae Pak Nam Pho Procession Festival (งานประเพณีแห่เจ้าพ่อ-เจ้าแม่ปากน้ำโพ) is a festival of the Thai Chinese who live in Nakhon Sawan. This festival has been held since ancient times. It takes place during Chinese New Year (around the beginning of February every year) to bring good fortune. It features various processions such as lion parade, dragon parade, angel procession, the goddess Guan Yin procession and others going along the main roads in the municipality. The festival is famous among Thais and foreigners.
Boat Races for His Majesty’s Trophy (ประเพณีการแข่งเรือยาวชิงถ้วยพระราชทาน) are held annually at the end of the Buddhist Lent on the Chao Phraya River in front of the Provincial Hall. There are also races at temples along the river such as Wat Ko Hong and Wat Takhian Luan. The races show the unity of the people, as well as the skill of paddlers and boat owners participating.
Nakhon Sawan (นครสวรรค์), literally Heavenly City, is a town with a population of about 90,000. It is the provincial capital of Nakhon Sawan Province and is located at the confluence of the Ping and Nan rivers in Northern Thailand.
Sawan Park : Sawan Park is in Nakhon Sawan Municipality beside the Asian Highway. It was originally a large swamp with an area of 502,400 square meters called Nong Som Bun. It was later made into a sizable public park with 2 ring roads encircling it. The middle of the park is an beautiful island with an area of 6,400 square meters. The park has a garden, lawn, fountain, outdoor stage, waterfall, and rose garden. Activities in this Park are Aerobic Dance, Jogging, Thai-Chi, Football, Basketball ...and there are Fitness Machines to use around the park .
Bung Boraphet : This is, depending on the water level, a small sized lake, or a large sized swamp, occupying a vast area. It is the largest aquaculture source of freshwater fish in Thailand. There is a museum and aquarium with many species of fresh water fish. Bung Borapet is also a regulary visited Place of migratory Birds , this makes it also a Bird watchers paradise. Near the museum there is also a small Lake with Crocodile for visitors to watch these magnificient Animals. crocodiles are also raised there and visitors are also welcome to have a look into the breeding Grounds. Bueng Borapet is currently getting additionally developed and will be one of Nakhon Sawan's attractions.
Mae Wong National Park: Mae Wong National Park is on the Thanon Thong Chai Mountain Range. The area consists of winding mountains and is the source of several waterways, including the Mae Wong River and some parts of Khlung Canal. The waterways flow into the Ping River and the Chao Phraya River. Mae Wong National Park is in Amphoe Pang Sila Thong in Kamphaeng Phet (446.4 square kilometers) and in Amphoe Mae Wong-Mae Poen in Nakhon Sawan (446.48 square kilometers), totaling 892.88 square kilometers. The north borders Khlong Lan National Park of Kamphaeng Phet, the south borders Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Reserve of Uthai Thani, the east borders villages in Kamphaeng Phet and Nakhon Sawan, and the west borders Um Phang Wildlife Reserve in Tak. The area was proclaimed a national park on 14 September 1987 and was the 55th national park of Thailand. The park headquarters are at No. 65, Khlong Lan-Um Phang Road, Amphoe Pang Sila Thong, Kamphaeng Phet.
Attractions in Mae Wong National Park : Kaeng Pha Khoi Nang-Kaeng Nam Bon Kaeo Hin is on the Khlong Lan-Um Phang road and 1.4 kilometers from the park headquarters and another 400 meters on a secondary road. This is a large brook that Khlung Canal flows through. From here, you can walk around 350 meters to Pha Khoi Nang Waterfall that has 4 levels. Viewpoint is on the Khlong Lan-Um Phang road at Km. 81, around 16 kilometers from the park headquarters. At Km. 93 about 28 kilometers from the headquarters is the area between mountains that is perpetually breezy with an average temperature below 20 degrees Celsius. It is 1.34 kilometers above sea level. Nang Nuan Waterfall can be reached by getting to Km. 93 and going on foot for about 6.4 kilometers. The waterfall is located amidst the lush jungle. It has 4 levels. It takes about 1 day to make a return trip to the waterfall. Mae Krasa Waterfall is a large 9-level waterfall about 900 meters high. The waterfall is formed by streams from high-altitude jungles on the Thanon Thong Chai Mountain Range. It is about 18 kilometers from the park headquarters. The trip on foot takes 3-4 days. Mae Riwa Waterfall is around 21 kilometers from the headquarters. It is a large waterfall that has 5 levels and takes about 3 days for a return trip on foot. Mokochu Peak is the highest peak in the park. It is 1.964 kilometers above sea level and is 50 kilometers from the headquarters. The return trip on foot takes 5-7 days. Kaeng Lan Nok Yung is a brook with a wide rock plateau. Mae Wong River, which originates in Mae Wong Forest flows through it. It is about 800 meters from Mae Rewa Forest Protection Unit. The area is suitable for training programs and group camping. The distance from the unit to the brook is about 1.5 kilometers and it is accessible by car.
The Origin of the Chao Phraya River: The Origin of the Chao Phraya River is the point where the Ping and Nan rivers converge at Tambon Pak Nam Pho in front of the dam in the city. Here, one can clearly distinguish the difference between the two rivers. The Nan River is reddish in color while the Ping River is somewhat green. They flow to form the Chao Phraya River, the most important waterway of the country. The Chao Phraya flows past several provinces before going through Bangkok and ending into the Gulf of Thailand in Samut Prakan. It is about 370 kilometers long. The best place to view its origin is at the Chao Pho Thepharak-Chao Mae Thapthim Shrine.Tourists can take boat rides to view the scenery on both banks and pay homage to Luang Pho To Buddha image at Wat Pak Nam Pho (Wat Thong Thammachat Nua). Boats can be hired from Chao Phraya Pier.
Chao Pho Thepharak-Chao Mae Thapthim Shrine Chao Pho Thepharak-Chao Mae Thapthim Shrine is in the area of Pak Nam Pho Community on the right bank of the Chao Phraya River. The shrine is revered by locals and is the spiritual magnet of the people in the area as well as passersby using the river. The shrine also offers the best view of the beginning of the river.
Wat Woranat Banphot:
Wat Woranat Banphot (Khao Kop) is an old temple of the province on the peak of Khao Kop 185.5 meters above sea level. There are 2 ways up; a stairway of 439 steps and an asphalt road 3 meters wide. The peak has a replica of Lord Buddhas Footprint and a pagoda encasing the relic of Lord Buddha built when Sukhothai was the countrys capital. The temple was praised by the Department of Religious Affairs as the best development temple of 1966. A nearby hill is the site of some television relay stations.
Khao No-Khao Kaeo: Khao No-Khao Kaeo is a limestone mountain that has Wat Khao Lo at its foot. A stairway leads to the cave at the peak where a large Buddha image sits in front. When King Rama V visited here via the Ping River, he stayed overnight on the mountain. The province later built a monument to commemorate the occasion. There are numerous monkeys at the foot of the mountain and you can see plenty of bats that live in the cave flying out to feed in the evening, making a long black line in the night sky. Khao Kaeo nearby also has a number of bats flying out at night.
Wat Ko Hong: This old Temple on the Bank of the Chao Phraya River has lasted for over 200 years and is located in the Mon community. Several activities and traditions of the Mon culture such as Saba, Luk Chuang , Boat racing and the Songkran festival are still observed. Built in 1793 , Phra Wihan – an image hall, which was adapted from former Phra Ubosot – an ordination hall- of the late Ayutthaya to early Rattanakosin period still remains to be seen.The building houses mural paintings of the royal school of artisans depicting the congregation of angels known as “ Thep Chumnum “ in the Ayutthaya style.King Rama V , on his personal visit to the North, stopped here on 12 August 1906 to pay homage to the principal Buddha image inside the Phra Ubosot. The king was pleased with the so-called Phra Sangkatchai (Sangkajiayana) image in a standing posture and asked for it to be enshrined elsewhere. An amount of money was bestowed for another image to be built to replace the original one. It has been housed within the Phra Ubosot until present.
Luang Phaw In (Pra Kru Nirothammaprayuth) Pra Kru Nirothammaprayuth was born in 1882, at Ban Thaprachum , Srimahapho district in Prajeenbun. Originally called “Thong-in” , he was ordained a Buddhist monk by Pra-ajam Gun at Ban Koa temple of Muang District in Nakhon Sawan. He passed the examination of Dhamma graduate.In 1929, he was the head monk of Ko Hong Temple and in 1942 , he received the title “ Pra Kru” Pra Kru Nirothammaprayuth.Pra Kru Nirothammaprayuth was a highly respected monk among Nakhon Sawan people and another people from other provinces around Nakhon sawan . Pra Kru Nirothammaprayuth could cure the people who got broken legs or arms from accidents. And he could cure paralyzed people and he could use his power from inside to cure the disease from rabid dogs.
Yeab Cha “Yeab Cha” is for curing paralyzed people, tiring legs or arms and the body by using feet touch, Thai herb with oil , then touch the hottest iron on the stove and put that foot on the part of body which had been paralyzed or was tiring. While putting the hot foot on the parts of body it sounded that “ Cha” so it is called “ Yeab Cha”.
Wat Keon Daeng At Wat Keon Daeng which is located next to Chao Phraya River you find a big "Guan Im" , this beautiful temple is of chinese style and so is the "Guan Im" Buddha. The story about "Guang Im" goes as follows.
Guan Im, the goddess of mercy, and friend of mankind is one of the most famous Chinese Buddha Images. Her name in Chinese means the name of the one who hears the cries of the world. She was an actual person who chose to follow the path of wisdom and service. After many incarnations, she was able to reach the nirvana, Buddhist ultimate goal. Nowadays, Guan Im is an important element of Buddhism, especially in China and East Asian countries. In Japanese, Guan Im is called Kannon or Kanzeon, which is much formal. The spelling of Kwannon also can be seen, due to the system of romanization. In Korean, Guan Im is called Kwan-um or Kwan-se-um. She is called Quan Âm or Quan Thế Âm Bồ Tát in Vietnam.
It is believed that, along with Buddhism, Guan Im was first introduced into China approximately in the 1st century and reached Japan in the mid 7th century by the way of Korea. Prior to the Song Dynasty (960-1279), Guan Im's appearance was masculine. However, image had changed later to be displayed in both genders in accordance with the Lotus Sutra .This supernatural power allowed Guan Im to assume any form required to relieve human suffering. As Guan Im represented in China as the symbol of compassion and kindness, a mother –goddess and patrons of mothers and seamen, the interpretation of Guan Im was further depicted in an all female form around the 12th century. Nowadays, Guan Im is often seen as a beautiful, white-robed woman. The origin of Guan Im is still unknown. Although there are many legends about the origin, the following is one of the most popular. In 7th century, Miao-Jueng, a Chinese Emperor, had three daughters. The youngest named Mian-Shan. At the time of Mian-Shan was born, people could smell a beautiful fragrance and flowers blossomed throughout the country. Many believed that this was the signs of a holy incarnation on her body.
Mian-Shan had been vegetarian since she was born, or in her mother's womb as during her pregnancy, Mian-Shan's mother could not eat any meat. When Mian-Shan grew up, she became very beautiful and elegant. Her mercy was highly recognized, even with a prisoner. As her parents saw little value in a female child, her parents wanted her to get married to a wealthy guy. In contrary, Mian-Shan wanted to become a nun, helping alleviate the suffering of all mankind. The Emperor and the Queen were so angry and forced her to stay away at menial tasks. Due to her strong determination, finally, the Emperor allowed her to pursue her religious calling at a monastery. However, the Emperor ordered the nuns there to offer her hard chores in order to discourage her.
She was ordered to collect wood and water, and tend a garden for the kitchen as they thought these chores was impossible because the land nearby the monastery was dry and barren. Miraculously, even in the winter, the land flourished, and a spring welled up out of nowhere next to the kitchen. When the Emperor heard these, he decided to kill Mian-Shan. When the Emperor came to the monastery, a spirit came out of nowhere and carried Mian-Shan to a safe remote island. She pursued a life of religious dedication there many years.Several years later, her father was seriously sick. He could not eat nor sleep. His doctors thought he would die soon. One day a monk came to visit the Emperor. He told the Emperor that his illness could be cured by the medicine made from arms and eyes of one free from hatred. The Emperor thought that this was impossible. However, the monk said that there was a Bodhisattva living in the Emperor's territory, who would be willing to give those things if asked.The Emperor sent an envoy to find this unknown bodhisattva. After the request, Mian-Shan instantly cut out her eyes and arms. The envoy returned. The Emperor recovered after he ate the medicine. The Emperor thanked the monk. However, the monk told him to thank the one who gave him eyes and arms. Suddenly, the monk disappeared. As a result, the Emperor and his family headed to meet that bodhisattva. When they realized that their daughter, Mian-Shan who made the sacrifice, their eyes were full of tears and hearts full of shame, then, the earth trembled. A holy manifestation of the Thousands Eyes and Thousands Arms appeared, hovering in the air. The Bodhisattva was gone since then. Most disciples of Guan Im do not eat beef as the legend stated that after the Emperor died, he was born as a cow for his next life due to his cruelty. As a result, the disciples do not want to eat Guan Im's father.
Wat Nakhon Sawan (Wat Hua Muang) Located on Sawanwithi Rd. in the city. This temple has the special Buddha's Image called "Phra Phu Hai A-pai Ying" located behind the main temple on Thepsithichai Rd., the first image faces east and the other faces west, were built by the Burmese as the mountains of forgiveness and stop the revenge. Inside the main temple there is another Buddha Image called "Luang Phor Sri Sawan".
Wat Nakhon Sawan, the third grade royal temple of the major denominations of Buddhism or Maha Nikai, is an old national symbol of Nakhon Sawan. Its former name, Wat Hua Muang denoting its former location as the main city of a province, was changed to Wat Nakhon Sawan. In 1892 when Nakhon Sawan Country was established, the pledge ceremony of allegiances to the kings was held here. Many kings and members of the royal family visit this temple. Luang Pho Sri Sawan the main Buddha image, presiding and representing an image of Nakhon Sawan was assumed to be built in 1399 next to the Ubosot are two big Buddha images sitting back to back. They are called “Phra Phu Hai Apai” or the ones who always forgive. In front of the temple almost everyday there are thank offering dance dramas, which preserve its original identity.
Bo Ya Cave Bo Ya Cave is Hin Kon Village in Tambon Nong Krot, around 30 kilometers from the city on the San Nakhon Sawan-Lat Yao road. Another 6-kilometer road leads to Wat Tham Bo Ya (Wat Thep Nimit Song Tham). A stairway at the foot of the hill leads up to the cave. The cave itself has 3 sections. The first has a large main Buddha image, the second further in is a dead end with a pond called Bo Nam Thip that is believed by locals to be sacred and the third section is an exit out the other way. Apart from the sacred pond, the cave has beautiful stalagmites and stalactites.
Wat Chom Khiri Nat Phrot Wat Chom Khiri Nat Phrot is on the peak of Khao Buat Nak between the foot of Dechatiwong Bridge and Chiraprawat Fort. Legend says that when Burmese troops sacked Ayutthaya for the second time, they built this temple to show that they also hold the Buddhism faith. The most interesting objects here are the replica of Lord Buddhas Footprint and a convocation hall that locals call Bot Thewada Sang. There is a fair to pay homage and attach gold leaves to the footprint in November. Boat races are held in conjunction with the fair.
Wat Kriang Krai Krang
Wat Kriang Krai Krang is at Mu 5, Tambon Kriang Krai, on the bank of Nan River. Inside is a Sukhothai-style bronze Buddha image in the Man Wichai posture and an old hall over a hundred years old. There is also a replica of Lord Buddhas Footprint and a mural of Lord Buddhas life. The area in front of the temple is inhabited by many monkeys and it is where a crocodile farm can be found.
|Routes through Nakhon Sawan|
|Chiang Mai ← Phitsanulok ←||N S||→ Lopburi → Bangkok|
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