Buri Ram (“City of Happiness”) is a town (thesaban mueang) in Thailand
Buri Ram (“City of Happiness”) is a town (thesaban mueang) in Thailand, capital of the Buriram Province, about 410-km northeast of Bangkok. The town covers the whole tambon Nai Mueang of Mueang Buriram district. As of 2012, it has a population of 34,333.
Almost a thousand years ago, the Khmer Empire conquered the present-day Buriram area. Many ruins from that time attest to the destruction. The most significant of them is on an extinct volcano and is protected in the Phanom Rung Historical Park. According to inscriptions found, Buriram’s ruler recognised the hegemony of the Khmer Empire’s emperor. Before the ascent of Bangkok, little was known about Buriram. In the early Bangkok Period, in the early 19th century, the town originally called Muang Pae, was renamed Buriram. Then it came under Thai rule. After administrative reforms in the late 19th century, Buriram was incorporated into Siam as a province. Continue reading →
Phanom Rung Historical Park Buriram is one of the most beautiful and important Khmer historic sites in Thailand. It was built during the 12th century AD and is set on top of Phanom Rung Hill in Tambon Ta Pek, Chaloem Phra Khiat District, Buriram, Isan, Thailand. Phanom Rung is the original name and is mentioned in stone inscriptions excavated in this area. It is a religious sanctuary dedicated to the God Shiva, the supreme Hindu deity. It symbolizes Mount Kailasa, the heavenly abode of Shiva. It has been designed to emphasize the central building, the principal tower, which faces east.
To the right of the stairway leading to the tower is a building known as “phlab phla” which could be the same building known today as “phlab phia pleuang khruang” (robbing room) in which the King prepared himself prior to proceeding with his entourage to pay respect to the deity or to perform religious rites. Adjacent is the pathway, which is adorned on both sides with columns topped with lotus buds. There are 38 such columns, which are known as “sao nang rieng.” The pathway leads to the raised cruciform-shaped Naga Bridge, which has rails in the form of a five-headed naga (a mythical snake). It is believed that this bridge links the human with the heavenly realm. In the middle of the bridge is an engraving of an eight-petalled lotus, which could symbolize the deities of the eight directions in Hindu belief. It could also mark the point where propitiation ceremonies were performed or where pilgrims made vows before proceeding further.
Location Phanom Rung Sanctuary
Aerial view of Phanom Rung Historical Park, Buriram
At the end of the Naga Bridge are 52 steps leading to a plateau on top of the hill. To the front of the arched doorway in the eastern gallery 1 is a second naga bridge. The gallery is actually a rectangular structure surrounding the tower on all four sides. It is not possible to walk through the gallery, however, as it is blocked in sections by a wall. In the centre of each wall is an arched doorway, while the comers of the wall are cruciform. The external gable on the eastern wall carries a relief of Shiva in the manifestation of a healer. This could represent Narendradit who constructed the Sanctuary. Continue reading →