Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon : Ayuthaya

Wat Yai, as the locals call it, is south-east of the town proper, but can be reached by minibus. It's a quiet, old place that was once a famous meditation temple, built in 1357 by King U Thong. The compound contains a very large chedi from which the wat takes its popular name (Yai means 'Big') and a large reclining Buddha. There is a community of (Buddhist nuns) residing here.

Wat Phra Meru (Phra Mehn/Mane) : Ayuthaya

Across form the old royal palace grounds is a bridge that can be crossed to arrive at Wat Phra Meru. This temple is notable because is escaped destruction from the Burmese in 1767, though it has required restoration over the years. The main bot (central sanctuary) was built in 1546 and features fortress-like walls and pillars. During the Burmese invasion, Myanmar's Chao Along Phaya chose this site from which to fire a cannon at the palace; the cannon exploded and the king was fatally injured, thus ending the sacking of Ayuthaya.

The bot interior contains an impressive carved wooden ceiling and a splendid Ayuthaya-era, crowned sitting Buddha, 6m hight. Inside a smaller wihaan behind the bot is a green-stone, European-pose(sitting in a chair) Buddha from Ceylon, said to be 1300 years old. The walls of the wihaan show traces of 18th or 19th century murals. Admission to Wat Phra Meru is 20B.

Wat Phanan Choeng : Ayuthaya

South-east of town on the Chao Phraya River, this wat was built before Ayuthaya became a Siamese capital. It's not known who built the temple, but it appears to have been constructed in the early 14th century so it's possibly Khmer. The main wihaan contains a highly revered 19m-high sitting Buddha image from which the wat derives its name.

The easiest way to get to Wat Phanan Choeng is by ferry from the pier near Phom Phet fortress, inside the south-east corner of the city centre.For a few extra baht you can take a bicycle with you on the boat.