Ayutthaya is all about ancient ruins – especially from a foreign tourist’s perspective. What you may not realize is that many of the newer-looking temples in this city are just as ancient as their crumbling counterparts. The difference is that they’ve been maintained, restored and rebuilt over the centuries, and they’re still in active use today.
Now, if it’s your first time in Ayutthaya, or if you only have time for the highlights, then by all means focus on the ruins. They’re spectacular. But if you’re craving an authentic Thai experience, consider following the nine-temple pilgrimage route that Thai visitors embrace.