The National Museum
Within walking distance of the Grand Palace, across the Pramane Ground, is one of the largest and most comprehensive museums in Southeast Asia. The National Museum houses over one thousand artifacts ranging from Neolithic times to the present Bangkok period. The complex consists of several old but beautiful buildings of colorful Thai architectural design.
The National Museum is the largest
museum, founded in 1874 by
King Rama V, is housed in the Palace to Wang Na, originally the residence of King Rama II and part of the Thai history. The visit starts with a useful introduction to Thai history. Note the black-stone inscription form Sukhothai, the oldest-known record of the Thai alphabet. Two large modern buildings house the main collection of pre-Thailand Thai sculpture, as well as pieces from elsewhere in Asia. An important exhibit in the southern wing is one of the earliest images of the Buddha from Gandhara in India, clearly influenced by classical Greek sculpture. A garage in a nearby building houses the collection of magnificent royal funeral chariots. Vajayant Rajarot is still used even though it needs 300 men to pull it.
The museum is open Wednesday-Sunday 9:00 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. and 1:00 P.M. - 4:00 P.M. There is an admission fee of 40 Baht for foreigners and 20 Baht for Thais. It is located next to the National Theater and Thammasat University, 4 Na Prathat Road. Telephone 2241333.
Guided tours are provided in the mornings as follows, they commence at 9:30 A.M. from the ticket desk.
|Thai Art, Religion and Culture||Every Thursday|
|Pre-Thai and Art||Every Wednesday|
|Thai Art and Culture||Every Thursday|
|Thai Culture and Pottery||1st, 2nd Wednesday of the month|
|Buddhaisawan Chapel||3rd Wednesday of the month|
|Pre-Thai and Thai Art||4th and 5th Wednesday of the month|
The National Gallery
The National Gallery (the former Royal Mint) near the National Museum, this gallery exhibits contemporary and traditional works of art.
Established in the reign of King Rama V, the Royal Mint was situated on Chao Fa Road which ran parallel to Former Moat Canal. Afterwards, it was moved to new location on Pradiphat Road. Its former office was given to the Fine Arts Department in 1977 and has functioned as the National Art Gallery since then.
Graciously inaugurated on August 8, 1977 by HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, the National Gallery is located at the foot of Phra Pin Klao Bridge. On the opposite side of the National Gallery there are displays of both classic and temporary arts of renowned Thai artists, for those who are interested or for study. His Majesty the King's oil paintings are also exhibited to be appreciated by the public.
The gallery is open Wednesday-Sunday 9:00 A.M. - 4:00 P.M. It is located 4 Chao Fa Road. There is an admission fee of 10 Baht. Telephone - 2812224, 2812639.
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