Lopburi, Thailand: Monkeys, Ruins and Sunflowers

This past Monday was MLK Day back home, but here in Thailand, it was Teacher’s Day which meant I got a two day weekend! So, with my additional day off, I decided to take a trip up to a city about three hours north of Bangkok called Lopburi. My students had all warned me about the wild monkeys that ran around town, but I assumed they (and my Lonely Planet) were exaggerating. I’ll get into Lopburi adventures just after this quick little story:

Saturday I had to teach an M2 Smart Class… I had a student who had a small furry thing sitting on her neck. When I asked her what it was, she went to grab it and it scurried into her shirt. What I thought was some sort of toy actually turned out to be a baby squirrel she had bought from the Krathumban Market. The thought of this made me sad, as this baby squirrel was clearly too young to be away from it’s mother. It’s ears had just barely opened. Like many things in Thailand, I’ve had to come to the understanding that, because I live in a third world country, things are much different here than they are at home. It’s perfectly normal for them to sell baby squirrels as pets at the market–even though they do not survive to see adulthood. Regardless, I was blessed to be able to hold this baby for the entire class and he was just adorable. Unlike the frantic little thing he was with my student, he was extremely calm and comfortable with me. He just slept the entire time with me. In my hand, on my lap, on my tum, in my pocket…. Quite cute.

LOPBURI, THAILAND

Lopburi is a town pretty much built around remains of centuries old temples. My students weren’t lying about monkeys being everywhere. There were gangs of them. Literally. I wouldn’t be surprised if they had markings that distinguished them from one another. Immediately after arriving, I noticed them dangling from power lines and mobbing the streets and nearby ruins. Since most of my friends had three day weekends (very few have to work Saturdays now), I had invited my friend Mike (Missouri) to join me on this adventure. While I was very excited and open to the idea of wild monkeys all over the place, I quickly learned I was the only one who was. I made very many monkey friends, one who even decided he would take my hair clip since I no longer had seeds to give him as food.

As I had mentioned, there were many ruins spread about town. It was hard not to cross them at any given intersection. They were absolutely breathtaking. It’s amazing how much detail has held up throughout the years. At this point, I can’t even describe the ruins with words, so I’ll just post pictures for you….

Ruins at Prang Sam Yot

Ruins outside Phra Narai Ratchaniwet (Former Royal Palace)

Ruins at Wat Nakhon Kosa

Ruins at Wat Phra Sri Rattana Mahathat

As you can tell, the ruins in Lopburi are absolutely beautiful and worth a visit if you ever get the chance to go….

Lopburi is not only known for it’s monkeys and ruins, but also it’s abundance in sunflowers as well… Just outside of the city by about a 20 minute tuk-tuk ride (8 baht) plus a 30 minute bus ride (17 baht) you reach a stretch of road that has many fields of sunflowers. If you get off the main road and walk back a bit (about 15-20 minutes or so), you reach fields and fields of yellow. It’s so serene and absolutely gorgeous. You can only see this if you go between November and mid-January, though. Otherwise you will just see fields of dead. While I did see many dead sunflowers, there were still plenty of lively ones for me to frolic amongst. I’m out of words for Lopburi… Here is me in the sunflower field:

So I mentioned how to get to the sunflower fields. That was easy. It’s a little more complicated getting back. Well, not really complicated, more like  you don’t know whether a bus is going to come or not because you’re out in the middle of nowhere. So I can’t really give you advice on how to get back. Fortunately a lovely woman by the name of Mas saw us sitting on the side of the road waiting for the bus that may or may not have come and picked us up in her seafoam green pickup truck as she was headed back into town. I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned that I love Thai people, they are extremely kind.

That’s all for now!! Not sure where my next adventure will be to, but I’ll keep you posted! xx

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2 thoughts on “Lopburi, Thailand: Monkeys, Ruins and Sunflowers

  1. WOW!! Lindsey, I love your blogs. What an interesting and fun life you are living for a season. You will never forget it and I always live vicariously through your adventures.
    Be careful over there! You are a long way from home, but you are in good spirits and living large as you dad would say! Hopefully, you did not bring any little (or big) critters home with you.

    Love you very much!

    Mia

  2. Those ruins are just magnificent. So sad that they have been allowed to fall into such disrepair. The baby squirrel was just adorable. Also sad that they are taken away from their mothers at such an early age and sold as pets.
    Watch out for those monkeys, they can be vicious. But all in all, I’d say you are having one heck of an adventure over there. The sunflowers are just gorgeous by the way, even though they are far from being my favorite flower. They are huge!! Keep blogging girl, it is so interesting to see what you are doing over there and the adventures you are having. Memories for a lifetime.

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