Located in northern Thailand around 400 kilometers from Bangkok and surrounded by green rice fields, Phitsanulok is not a famous tourist destination but a Traditional Thai province, where one still can find a old style living while its residents proclaim themselves as the “Original Thais”. Somebody told me that the inhabitants of Phitsanulok feel animosity toward foreigners because the sex tourism, but it’s just gossip. Honoring the essence of Thai hospitality and as most Thais, the residents of Phitsanulok are friendly and many do smile at you on the street.

Unknown to tourists, a culturally rich place

Phitsanulok town certainly looks different than any other city in Thailand, I would say a bit dismal and dark, specially the railway station. The town looks really old fashioned and there still remain the old customs and habits of their ancestors. The town has the most primitive variety of tuk tuks I have ever seen, along with unusual and ugly motorized tricycles which carry a small front cargo box (Later I would see a few in Kantharalak, Sisaket).

An interesting aspect of the regional culture is traditional cock fighting. Villagers of Ban Krang still practice the traditional game of cock fighting on festive occasions.

Nevertheless Phitsanulok has a significant tourism and the city is famous for its beautiful Buddhist Temples, ruins and waterfalls. Perhaps most residents are active followers of the Theravada Buddhist religion, Buddhism is practiced at the many temples located throughout the province and town. Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat also known as “Wat Yai” is the most important temple in the city, and you should visit here if you enjoy the marvelous Buddhist temples of Thailand. Phitsanulok is also home to a number of historic sculptures of the Buddha and other religious artwork including the Buddha Chinnarat, the Buddha Chin Sri, the Phra Sri Satsada and Rat Nom Ha Tat Maha Wihan.

A special mention to the ruins of a historic chedi located 15 km east of the city of Phitsanulok on Lom Sak Road.

Other attractions in Phitsanulok are the Wat Ratchaburana and Wat Nang Phya temples, Wat Chulamani, the Pim Buranaket Folklore Museum, the Namtok Poi waterfall and the Houseboats along Nan River (Maenam Nan).

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