Samut Sakhon Province

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Samut Sakhon
สมุทรสาคร
Province
Official seal of Samut Sakhon
Seal
Map of Thailand highlighting Samut Sakhon Province
Map of Thailand highlighting Samut Sakhon Province
Country  Thailand
Capital Samut Sakhon town
Government
 • Governor Wanlop Phringphong (since October 2009)
Area
 • Total 872.3 km2 (336.8 sq mi)
Area rank Ranked 72nd
Population (2014)
 • Total 531,887
 • Rank Ranked 53rd
 • Density 610/km2 (1,600/sq mi)
 • Density rank Ranked 4th
Time zone ICT (UTC+7)
ISO 3166 code TH-74

Samut Sakhon (Thai: สมุทรสาคร (Pronunciation)) is one of the central provinces (changwat) of Thailand, established by the Act Establishing Changwat Samut Prakan, Changwat Nonthaburi, Changwat Samut Sakhon, and Changwat Nakhon Nayok, Buddhist Era 2489 (1946), which came into force on March 9, 1946.

Neighboring provinces are (from the southwest clockwise) Samut Songkhram, Ratchaburi, Nakhon Pathom, and Bangkok.

Etymology[edit]

The word "samut" originates from the Sanskrit word "samudra" meaning "ocean", and the word "sakhon" from Sanskrit "sagara" meaning "lake".

Geography[edit]

Samut Sakhon is at the mouth of the Tha Chin Klong River, a distributary of the Chao Phraya River, to the Gulf of Thailand. At the coast are many fields used for sea salt production.

History[edit]

The oldest name of the area is Tha Chin, probably referring to the fact that it was a trading port where Chinese junks arrived. In 1548 the city Sakhon Buri was established, and was renamed in 1704 to Mahachai after the khlong Mahachai which was dug then and connected with the Tha Chin River near the town. It was renamed by King Mongkut to its current name, however the old name Mahachai is still sometimes used by the locals.

Symbols[edit]

The provincial seal shows a Chinese junk in front of the coast, with a smoking chimney. Both refer to the old trading tradition as well as the local industries.

The provincial tree is the devil tree (Alstonia scholaris). The provincial slogan is Fishing city, factory town, agricultural ground, historic site

Administrative divisions[edit]

Map of Amphoe

The province is subdivided into three districts (Amphoe). The districts are further subdivided into 40 communes (tambon) and 288 villages (muban).

  1. Mueang Samut Sakhon
  2. Krathum Baen
  3. Ban Phaeo

Altogether there are seven municipal (thesaban) areas within the province - Samut Sakhon is the only city (thesaban nakhon)[citation needed], Krathum Baen and Om Noi are the two towns (thesaban mueang)[citation needed], and there are further four townships (thesaban tambon). The non-municipal areas are administrated by 30 tambon administrative organizations (TAO).

Tourism[edit]

Sights[edit]

Wat Yai Chom Prasat (วัดใหญ่จอมปราสาท) It is an ancient temple constructed approximately 400 years ago. Inside the temple, there are important historical remains. The Fine Arts Department registered the temple as a national ancient monument on 27 September 1936.

Wat Suthiwat Wararam (วัดสุทธิวาตวราราม) or Wat Chong Lom (วัดช่องลม) A beautifully decorated royal temple and a model of the developed one. At the front of the temple is enshrined a statue of King Rama V, celebrating his royal journey to Tha Chalom and its establishment as the first sanitary district of Thailand.

Samut Sakhon Science Centre for Education (ศูนย์วิทยาศาสตร์เพื่อการศึกษาจังหวัดสมุทรสาคร) The building houses an exhibition on astrology and space. Outside the building, scientific gardens are organized as a geological garden, health garden, physics amusement park, organic agricultural garden, and herb garden.

Wat Khok Kham (วัดโคกขาม) The interesting part of this temple is the old ubosoth decorated around with Sema boundary markers. Adjacent is the Phanthai Norasing Shrine which was a temporary shrine and a store of antique objects concerning the story of Phanthai Norasing.

Phanthai Norasing Shrine (ศาลพันท้ายนรสิงห์) This shrine was constructed in memory of Phanthai Norasing. Phrachao Suea had Phanthai Norasing executed against the former’s own consent, ordered the construction of a temporary shrine and put Phanthai Norasing’s head as well as the broken figurehead of the Ekkachai royal barge in the shrine to be a symbol of his honesty and loyalty.

Khlong Khok Kham (คลองโคกขาม): A very winding canal. Some parts of it are 90-degree curves. The tide is so strong that it is very difficult to control a boat. This caused an accident when Phrachao Suea went along Khlong Khok Kham on his private trip by the Ekkachai royal barge. The barge hit a branch of a tree and Phanthai Norasing as the steersman took responsibility by being executed.

Pom Wichian Chodok (ป้อมวิเชียรโชฎก) Wichien Chodok Fort is an ancient brick fort in the old Sakorn Buri city.[1][2]

The City Pillar Shrine (ศาลหลักเมือง) A sacred place as well as a special centre for the fishermen in the province. Every time before sailing off, they have to pay respect and light a firework in front of the city pillar shrine for good luck.

Talat Maha Chai (Tharuea Thetsaban) (ตลาดมหาชัย, ท่าเรือเทศบาล) It is a centre of commerce and transport of Samut Sakhon. Talat Maha Chai is a spot where there are boats to various districts. There are charters as well as regular long-tailed boats to Khlong Khok Kham.

Saphan Pla (สะพานปลา) The biggest fish bridge and a modern one, second only to that in Bangkok. Modern facilities are utilized to transfer large amount of sea products in every kind. Also, it is a wholesale centre of sea fish.

Wat Pa Chai Rangsi (วัดป่าชัยรังสี) The temple was constructed in 1982. Its unique pattern of architecture, similar to the stone sanctuaries in the northeast of Thailand, is the most interesting aspect of the temple.

Wat Bang Pla (วัดบางปลา) An important temple of the Mon minority in Samut Sakhon. King Rama V went to the temple when Luangpu Thao Kao Yot was the abbot. Moreover, Krommaluang Chumphon Khet Udomsak had a long covered walkway constructed with its eaves board being beautifully engraved.

Ao Maha Chai Mangrove Forest Natural Resource Study Centre (พื้นที่ศึกษาธรรมชาติป่าชายเลนอ่าวมหาชัย) In Ban Ya Phraek at the mouth of the Tha Chin River. The centre is in the area of the National Forest Reserve on the west side of Ao Maha Chai.

Shrimp Farms and Salt Fields (นากุ้งนาเกลือ) Samut Sakhon's coast is well-suited for operating shrimp farms and salt fields, especially in Kalong, Na Khok, Ban Bo, Bang Thorat, Khok Kham, and Phanthai Norasing.

Wat Nang Sao (วัดนางสาว) During a war between Thailand and Burma, a group of Thai immigrants fled via the Chin River. Elderly men and women hid in an old church. The people of Thailand won this war and many immigrated to the settlement in this area. In this group, there were two siblings, a brother and a sister who lived in a church sanctuary. The sister thought that the church had deteriorated so much that a new one needed to be built. The sister wanted to follow the promise from her own prayer that, if she survived, she would restore the church. So the church was completely restored and renamed "Porm Ma Ja Re". Later, the locals called this church "Wat Nong Sao" and the name was further adjusted to "Wat Nang Sao". The most important part of this ancient temple is a brick ordination hall with a curved base. It has a single entrance, and is named Bot Ma-ha-Ut. The ancient style terracotta tiled roof, whose beams were made of logs and twin sandstone boundary markers, add to the authentic feel of the site. In front of the temple next to the The Chin River is also a fish sanctuary, full of striped catfish.

Activities[edit]

Cruising is one of the interesting water activities for tourists in Samut Sakhon. The route starts from the Phanthai Norasing Shrine at Khlong Khok Kham.

Orchard and Flower Garden Tour in Amphoe Krathum Baen and Amphoe Ban Phaeo. In both districts, the locals do orchards, vegetable plantation, orchid farms and coconut groves. The former one is famous for the orchards of Nam Hom (fragrant juice) coconuts, pomelos and orchid farms along Setthakit Road (3091), while in the latter, there are vineyards and guava orchards along Highway 3097.

Culture[edit]

Festivals[edit]

The Seafood Festival takes place during February or March every year at the embankment in front of the City Pillar Shrine to promote the reputation of seafood products of the province as well as the agricultural produce of the Ban Phaeo people such as fruits and flowers, including the processed food industry. Also, there is a fair offering seafood and handicraft products.

The Ban Phaeo Agriculture Fair is organized during February or March every year to promote the agricultural produce of the farmers in Amphoe Ban Phaeo, the most well-known place in the province and the biggest one in the country for the production of fruits, flowers and agricultural products.

The Chaopho Lak Mueang Procession takes place in June every year at the embankment in front of the city hall. The "Chaopho Lak Mueang" is then placed in a palanquin on a fishing boat, which is beautifully decorated with flags, and floated along the Tha Chin River from Talat Maha Chai to Tha Chalom in the area of Wat Suwannaram and further to Wat Chong Lom, providing an opportunity for the people to pay respect and gain good fortune.

The Tha Chalom Vegetarian Festival is organized during the period of days 1-9 of the waxing moon in the 9th Chinese lunar month every year. It is a serene vegetarian festival of a ceremonial nature. It purifies the body and spirit and it is attended by a large number of people.

The Honey Offering Festival takes place in Wat Khlong Khru, Amphoe Mueang, Samut Sakhon, on the full moon of the 10th lunar month to pass on the traditional culture and festival of the Thai Mon people by paying respect to the monks. The monks will preserve the honey and use it as medicine. The Thai Mon people believe that those who offer honey to the monks will obtain good luck in return and gain prosperity financially and in honour, both in this and in the next life.

The Bodhisattva Kwan Yin Homage-paying Fair takes place from 19–23 November every year in the area of Wat Chong Lom to pay homage to Bodhisattva Kwan Yin.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Wichien Chodok Fort". Tourist Authority of Thailand (TAT). Retrieved 28 May 2015. 
  2. ^ เดินชมโบราณสถานที่ ป้อมวิเชียรโชฎก. Retrieved 12 Sep 2013, from http://www.samutsakhon-city.com/TH/content/pages/pom-eichien-choe-dok_09092013_s.aspx

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 13°32′50″N 100°16′25″E / 13.54722°N 100.27361°E / 13.54722; 100.27361