|WAT PA SAK (วัดป่าสัก)
|This temple ruin is located on the city island along the northern part of Rojana Road. It
is situated on the property of Ayutthaya Wittayalai School. Wat Pa Sak is one of the
three temple ruins that are still visible at this school. The other two are Wat Mae Nang
Muk and Wat Saphan Nak.
There are two structures standing in situ. One of these is a medium-sized chedi. This was
built in the Khmer-influenced style known as a prang. Although it has been heavily
eroded, some stucco remains that give it a similar appearance as the prang at Wat Som.
For this reason, it is believed by some archaeologists that Wat Pa Sak was constructed
during the Early Ayutthaya period. There are a number of large holes dug into its sides,
which has greatly weakened its stability Today the reliquary tower is prevented from
toppling over by metal girders that hold it in place.
The second structure is a bit more mysterious. It has also badly eroded. This square-like
structure appears to be the elevated base of a sermon hall. The top of this base seems to
have collapsed into a mound. Only a small portion of its walls and some stucco can still
be discerned at the top. There are several large holes dug into the sides by looters.
Interestingly, based on the positioning of these two structures, Wat Pa Sak would
appear to be aligned on a north/south axis - a rare traits for monasteries in the Early
Wat Pa Sak also has a large number of Buddha images on site. Among this scattered
detritus is a carved bowl-like structure. There is evidence that Wat Pa Sak was restored
in the late period, which suggests it was still active at the time when Ayutthaya fell to the
There is little known about this monastery’s history. A canal once ran along an east/west
axis just north of Wat Pa Sak, which provided easy access to the monastery. To its east
was a small pond that also provided boat axis. Additional canals around Wat Pa Sak
formed a small island for this monastery to rest upon. Some traces of these canals are
still visible today.
Wat Pa Sak was excavated by the Fine Arts department in 2001. A Buddha image was
found inside the prang as well as a variety of pottery. It is possible that portions of this
monastery were destroyed during the construction of Rojana Road.
|Text & by Ken May - August 2009
Wat Pa Sak can be translated as the Monastery of the Teak Forest or Teak Quarter.
The site is indicated on a mid-19th century map in a nearly identical position as on Phraya
Boran Rachathanin's map drafted in 1926. The mid-19th century map indicates the
existence of a chedi, which at present still can be seen.
The site is situated in Geo. Coord.: 14° 21' 3.13" N, 100° 33' 58.23" E.
|Addendum, Photographs and maps by Tricky Vandenberg - April 2011
Updated February 2015
|(View from the south)
|(Remains of the chedi in situ)
|(Remains of a monastic structure)
|(Objects found in situ)
|(View from the east)
|Site view of Wat Pa Sak two months after the flood which hit the Historic City of
Ayutthaya and its Historical Park in the evening of 7 October 2011. Pictures
were taken on 2 January 2012.
(Photographs by Tricky Vandenberg)
|(Detail of a 19th century map - Courtesy of the Sam
Chao Phraya Museum)
|(Detail of Phraya Boran Rachathanin's map - Anno
|(Detail of a 2007 Fine Arts Department GIS map -
Courtesy of the Fine Arts Department - 3th Region)