Wat Nak, or the Monastery of the Naga, is situated in the western area of Ayutthaya, off the city island in the Pak Kran Sub-district, west of Khlong Takhian (1).

The temple lies near the present (new) active Wat Klang Khlong Takhian and its ancient position, Wat Klang.

The remains of the monastery reside in an area covered with vegetation.

The site is a large brick mound, and there is still a standing damaged chedi. Traces of broken Buddha images can be seen.

The monastery is mentioned on a 19th-century map but is not indicated on Phraya Boran Ratchathanin’s map of 1926 CE. All Fine Arts Department maps since 1974 CE show the site.

Its historical background and period of construction are not known.

Near Wat Nak was one of the former six southern ferries (2) across the old Lopburi River - at present the Chao Phraya River (1) - linking the monastery with Tha Wang Chai (Palace of Victory Landing) near Wat Wang Chai. [1]

The site is in geographical coordinates: 14° 20' 10.32" N, 100° 32' 45.31" E.

(View of a remaining chedi of Wat Nak)


(1) 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."

(2) In the Ayutthayan period, there were twenty-two ferry routes between the mainland and the city island. In the southern area, the five other crossings were the crossing to Wat Phanan Choeng, Tha Hoi to Wat Pa Jak, Tha Phra Racha Wangsan to Wat Khun Phrom, Tha Dan Chi to Wat Surintharam and Tha Chakrai Noi to Wat Tha Rap.


[1] Ratchathanin, Phraya Boran. Athibai Phaenthi Phra Nakhon Sri Ayutthaya kap khamwinitjai khong Phraya Boran Racha Thanin. Explanation of the map of the Capital of Ayutthaya with a ruling of Phraya Boran Ratchathanin - Revised 2nd edition and Geography of the Ayutthaya Kingdom. Ton Chabab print office. Nonthaburi (2007). p. 91.