Enigmatic temple ruins are strewn across Ayuthaya (อยุธยา), whispering of its glory days as a royal capital. Once replete with gilded temples and treasure-laden palaces, it was the capital of Siam from 1350 until 1767, when the city was brutally sacked by the Burmese. Only ruins remain from this period of thriving trade and art, but dozens of crumbling temples evoke Ayuthaya's past grandeur. Standing among towering stupas, it's easy to imagine how they looked in their prime.
A day trip is enough to tour temple ruins and catch the flavour of Ayuthaya's faded majesty. But linger for a couple of days and you'll fully experience its otherworldly atmosphere of sloshing riverboats, temple silhouettes drawn sharp against the setting sun, and ruins illuminated at night.