Royal Barges National Museum

+66(2)4240004
80/1 Arun Amarin Rd., Krung Thep Maha Nakhon

Price: 100 THB
Working hours: from 9.00 to 17.00

The Royal Barges National Museum is situated on the bank of one of the many channels that feed the Chao Phraya River, not far from the famous Temple of Dawn. The museum is not mentioned in every guide-book, but this may be down to poor PR rather than it not being very good. It is certainly on a comparable level with other, more famous museums that can be found in the Thai capital. It keeps a number of truly unique exhibits: paddle boats with amazing structures and décor that once belonged to Thailand’s kings.

Several centuries ago, the Chao Phraya River and its numerous channels (klongs), ran through the city and served for years as Bangkok’s main transport arteries. As a result of this, the capital’s residents moved primarily on long boats with only paddles to power them, but which could carefully maneuver through the narrow channels and tributaries. Successful traders, statesmen and other wealthy members of Bangkok’s local bourgeoisie had their own boats, which stood out against their plainer counterparts, owing largely to their size and richness of their decoration.

Elegant barges, these belonged to the royal family, were the most beautiful and luxurious craft of the lot. They were adorned with clever carvings, encrusted with precious stones, before being covered with silver and gold. A monarch would need to participate in solemn events and different customs (generally religious), which were held in the water, on his own boat.

Today, eight of the most famous and beautiful paddle boats, which were used by Thailand’s rulers during ceremonial processions on the river, can be seen in the Royal Barges National Museum. Each of these teak boats is inimitable in its style, has its own unique ornament and is adorned with wooden sculptures of mythical creatures. The sculptures are gilded and decorated with colorful pieces of glass. There was a place for king and his family to sit in the middle of a barge, which could be steered by up to fifty specially trained rowers.

One of the most famous barges is the Suphannahong (literally: Golden Swan). Built for King Rama VI in 1911, it is the oldest boat in the museum. In its pomp, it was 45 meters long and 3 meters wide, and needed to be powered and steered by 54 rowers. The vessel’s bow was adorned with a gilded figure, shaped as a swan head, giving the boat its name. Another noteworthy exhibit of the Royal Barges National Museum is the boat Narai Song Suban Ratchakan Thi Kao, which was created relatively recently in 1996. It was made to commemorate the golden anniversary of the ascent to the throne of Thailand's monarchs.

These, as well as six more magnificent royal barges, are situated in an open hangar. Several dozens of smaller boats are moored to the shores of the river nearby. In addition to these, the museum includes several other halls, where models of different boats and pictures of festive processions are exhibited. You can also learn all about the history of shipbuilding in Thailand within these halls.

If you are lucky enough to visit Bangkok in late October, you will be able to see the royal barges not only act as museum exhibits. Some of them take part in the annual Parade of Royal Barges, which is considered to be the most colorful and spectacular holiday in the country. This tradition was started 700 years ago and was revived in the second half of the 20th century. Most years see more than 50 royal barges take part in the parade, which are steered by the strong arms of more than two thousand rowers.

Getting there. The most convenient way to the museum is to take Chao Phraya Express Boat to the Wang Lang pier (N10) or Phra Pin Klao Bridge (N12), once there, follow the signs to the Arun Ammarin Bridge.

Average rating
7.5
Ratings: 19
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Reviews
Reviews: 19
Nigel ไนเจล

Museum will be closed if Chao Phraya river having high tide. So it really depends on your luck!

10.11.2017  
0
Nigel ไนเจล

Nearest water taxi pier - Phra Pin Klao bridge. You have to walk passing all the village before reach the museum which hidding off from main road. No accessible by car.

10.11.2017  
0
Joy

Simply stunning

05.04.2017  
0
: P

ค่าเข้าคนไทย 20 ฝรั่ง 100 ค่าถ่ายรูปกล้องละ 100

28.01.2016  
0
Aliaksandr

Глушь. Ещё умудрился добираться туда пешком партизанскими тропами через местное гетто. Сам музей - для фанатов, мне хватило 10 минут. И что за финт с доп.оплатой за польз. камерой моб. и фотоапп.?

24.01.2016  
0
Alexandra

An awesome sight - less tourists but not easy to find when you walk nobody can explain where it is

10.12.2015  
0
Andrew ONG

Another popular tourist liked spot in Bangkok Noi, Bangkok

27.12.2014  
0
Yongyut

พิพิธภัณฑสถานแห่งชาติ เรือพระราชพิธี

25.07.2014  
0
อรรณนพ

ลูกหลานชาวไทยควรภาคภูมิใจในมรดกศิลปะวัฒนธรรมไทย เรือพระราชพิธี ความงามของศิลปไทย ครับ

22.10.2013  
3
Anchistha

The entrance are small and nobody be notice it why less tourists come there

27.07.2013  
0
torontoviewer

Call before you go as it os sometimes closed when the tide is too high 02-424-0004

21.12.2012  
1
torontoviewer

Call before you go as it is sometimes closed when the tide is too high. 02-424-0004

21.12.2012  
1
ฮายาชิ

陸路で歩いて行けますが、細い路地が長く続くうえ、野良犬がたくさんいるので、女性は船で行った方が安全です。

17.10.2012  
1
¯|¯Õ~b€~Ï~m€~m@​​​x

เรือพระราชพิธี เป็นเรือไทยอีกรูปแบบหนึ่งที่สร้างสรรขึ้นเพื่อเป็นราชพาหนะ ตัวพิพิธภัณฑ์มีอยู่ 2 อาคาร

15.02.2012  
0
Hangout

สุดยอดสถาปัตยกรรมบนผืนน้ำ มรดกทางวัฒนธรรม หนึ่งเดียวในโลก ที่ๆท่านจะสัมผัสได้ถึงความยิ่งใหญ่ทางวัฒนธรรมไทยที่ฉีดซ่านไปทั่วร่างกาย กับศิลปะที่บรรจงสลักเสลาไปตามลำเรือในระยะใกล้ชิด....

10.01.2012  
1
The Peninsula Bangkok

The museum houses 50 or so beautifully designed and ornate longboats. The museum is open daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and is located on the banks of Khlong Bangkok Noi near Phra Prinklao Bridge.

23.12.2011  
4
Giff

เขิาไปดูได้ป่าว?

23.07.2011  
0
Giff

เขิาไปดูได้ป่าว?

23.07.2011  
0
pon'po'n

ลงเรือที่ท่าน้ำศิริราชก็ผ่านข้างหน้าได้นะ

03.07.2010  
1

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