The highlight of the Dusit Park is Vimanmek Teak Mansion said to be the world’s largest golden teak mansion, built with nary a single nail. For all its finery, grand staircases, octagonal rooms and lattice walls, which are nothing short of magnificent, it is surprisingly serene and intimate. The mansion was originally constructed on Ko Si Chang in 1868 as a retreat for Rama V; the king had it moved to its present site in 1901. For the following few years it served as Rama V’s primary residence, with the 81 rooms accommodating his enormous extended family. The interior of the mansion contains various personal effects of the king and a treasure-trove of early Ratanakosin and European art objects and antiques. Compulsory English-language tours of the building start every 30 minutes and last an hour, though it’s a lucky dip as to whether your guide will actually speak decent English or not. Try to time your visit to see the Thai classical and folk dances staged in an open-sided săh·lah (often spelt sala) beside the mansion at 10.30am and 2pm.