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Bangkok History in Brief

One of the reason Bangkok was moved from “Thon Buri,” (located on the west bank of Chao Phra Ya) by King Rama I (the frist of Chakri Dynasty) was that Bangkok had a better location for protection from foreign invasions as it was separated by the river. Then canals were dug around the city starting from the expansion of Banglamphu and Ong Ang canals to the east. When finished, the two canals were joined together and linked the Chao Phraya River at both ends so the city was surrounded by water and the whole canal was named "Khlong Rop Krung" meaning the canal round the city. These canals together with other smaller ones were the source of Bangkok's nickname "Venice of the East".


King Rama I then commanded the construction of the Grand Palace close to the river modeling on the ancient palace of Ayutthaya with a royal temple, the Emerald Buddha Temple, within the city walls. In addition, other important government offices were newly built on the east bank. The King gave a very long name to the capital, i.e. Krung Thep Mahanakhon Bowon Rattanakosin Mahinthrayutthaya Mahadilokphop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udom Ratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathatiya Witsanukam Prasit. (Later, King Rama IV (1851-1868) changed the word "Bowon" in the full name into "Amon".) This long name is still a world record, though in normal usage it is shortened to "Krung Thep." The name is still used among the Thais today as always, while the foreigners know Krung Thep as Bangkok. It is noteworthy that the name "Bangkok" formerly referred to a small fishing village which later expanded into communities on both sides of the Chao Phraya River. It is so named because the village (called bang in Thai) was full of wild olive (called makok in Thai which was shortened to kok) groves, and the name has been internationally used up to now.




Koh Kret in Brief

This is the tiny island in the Chao Phraya River north of Bangkok, accessible by boat from Wat Sanam Nua, not far from the Pak Kret District Office. There are no streets, no cars. This is community of craftsmen famous for their distinctive style of pottery which dates back many centuries. Koh Kret pots are known for their fine, red-black glazed surface and intricate design. The islanders are the descendants of the Mon people, and they have managed to retain the skills of their forefathers.



Bangkok-Noi Canal in brief


In early days, the section of the Chao Phraya River which passed through Bangkok was effectively the meeting of klong Bangkok Noi and klong Bangkok Yai. In 1522, Somdej Prachairachatiraj of Ayuttaya ordered the cutting of straight klong from the beginning of klong Bangkok Noi to klong Bangkok Yai with a width of 40 meters. The new canal was intended as a shortcut for commuting purposes and was called the Klong Lud Bangkok Yai, the “Klong Bangkok Yai Short Cut.” Another short cut klong was also cut through the Klong Bangkok Noi and was called “Klong Lud Bangkok Noi,” the klong Bangkok Noi short cut. As the water entering short cuts and flow in a direct line, the force of the river current gradually widening the klong banks until both short cut klong become one big river. Gradually, the widened shortcut klong are known as the new Chao Phraya River, and the remaining parts of the Klong Bangkok Yai and Klong Bangkok Noi became ordinary klongs. When it was still part of the Chao Pharaya River , Klong Bangkok Noi was just a small agricultural area. The lifestyle around the klong was nice and simple. After the shortcuts were created, not only was traveling time lessened, but both sides of the new river became towns.
Surrounded by the klong are local communities, local museum, royal barges museum, temples, bicycle house, and the royal mosque Ansorrisoonnah.



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