Wat Lot Chong is an active temple located off the city island in the western area of Ayutthaya in the Ban Pom Sub-district. Khlong Klaep (1), with its mouth at the Chao Phraya River, ran south of it. In the northeast stood Wat Racha Phli (defunct), and in the south, Wat Chai Watthanaram (restored ruin).

In situ, we find an ordination hall, an open-sided vihara with seating Buddha statues and other monastic structures. The ubosot was built in the early Ayutthaya style (1351-1488 CE), but its construction dates from the Rattanakosin period (post-1851 CE). The hall has two elevated porches, with each two entries and four columns supporting the porch roof. The roof of the building is three-tiered, while the longest walls have five windows each. The ordination hall is surrounded by eight "bai sema" or boundary stones, placed in the cardinal and inter-cardinal directions and protected from the elements by small open-sided structures. The boundary stones are double, indicating former royal patronage (2). The complex is surrounded by an inner wall demarcating the sacred area.

Wat Lot Chong is named after a Thai sweet produced in earlier times in the vicinity of this temple by the locals. The refreshing sweet is made of green tapioca noodles, coconut milk, sweet syrup, and water. Historical data about the monastery and its construction are unknown.

Based on the Temple Registration System of the National Office of Buddhism, Wat Khanon was established in 1657 CE in the late Ayutthaya period and received its Wisung Kham Sima in 1667 CE.

The 'Description of Ayutthaya', a document probably compiled early in the Bangkok era from the memories of people who had lived in Ayutthaya before 1767 CE, mentioned that in the Ayutthaya era at the village beside Wat Lot Chong, Patani Khaek weaved silk cloth, cotton cloth, and pha muang for sale in plain and in flower patterns. Merchants brought the fabric from the Khaek of Wat Lot Chong to sell at shops in the Betel Bag or Green-Cloth Market. [1]

Near Wat Lot Chong was one of the former four western ferries across the old Lopburi River - at present, the Chao Phraya River (3) - linking the monastery with the Rear Palace Landing (Tha Phra Racha Wang Lang).

The site is indicated on a 19th-century map but not on Phraya Boran Ratchathanin's map drafted in 1926 CE. On the oldest map, we find the presence of a chedi.

The site is in geographical coordinates: 14° 20' 51.81" N, 100° 32' 25.13" E.

(View of Wat Lot Chong)


(1) Khlong Klaep, or the Paddy Husk Canal, is a defunct canal situated off the city island in the western area of Ayutthaya, of which some stretches still can be seen today. The 1.5 Km long canal had its mouth at the old Lopburi River, today the Chao Phraya River. The canal continued under the same name on the opposite side of Ayutthaya's city island until Khlong Chakrai Yai. Khlong Klaep ran south of Wat Lot Chong, passed by Tamnak Jao Phraya Kalahom (also called Tamnak Phra Jao Prasat Thong) and continued until the moat of Wat Suren, south of Wat Worachet.

(2) At present, this temple is not listed as having royal patronage.

(3) Not many people realise the Chao Phraya River was not running on the west side of the city island in the Ayutthaya period. At that time, it was the Lopburi River that flowed around Ayutthaya. Today's Chao Phraya River ran through the Bang Ban Canal to Si Kuk and from there to Bang Sai (historical site: Chedi Wat Sanam Chai), where the Lopburi River joined the Chao Phraya River. At the time, the Chao Phraya River was situated about ten kilometres west of the centre of Ayutthaya. The city was linked to the ancient Chao Phraya River in the northwest of Ayutthaya via the Khlong Maha Phram and in the southwest via the Khlong Nam Ya. Steve Van Beeck (1994), in 'The Chao Phya: River in Transition" (Oxford University Press - New York.), writes that "It was not until 1857 that an alternative path was created [for the Chao Phraya River]. A 5-kilometre channel was dug from the entrance of Wat Chulamani to Ban Mai. The river responded by following this new course and abandoning the old one, in effect making a secondary river of the stretch that ran from Ban Mai, and into the Chao Phya Noi. Half as wide as the river above and below it, the 1857 Ban Mai shunt funnels the Chao Phya down to Ayutthaya."

(4) In the late Ayutthaya period, there were twenty-two ferry routes. In the western area, the three other crossings were from Wat Chayaram to Ban Chi, from Tha Dan Lom to Wat Kasatra and from Ban Jao Phraya Phonlathep to Wat Thamma.


[1] Pongsripian, Vinai, Dr. (2007). Phanna phumisathan Phra Nakhon Sri Ayutthaya: Ekasan jak Ho Luang. Geographical description of Ayutthaya: Documents from the palace. Bangkok: Usakane.