Erawan Elephant Museum

Trip Start Jan 21, 2009
Trip End Mar 20, 2009

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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Bangkok Erawan Elephant Museum

Today Noah and Sumalai drove us to the Erawan Elephant Museum, their favorite shrine and botanical garden outside of Bangkok.  They own an interesting older Honda Civic which is retrofited to run on propane; clean, cheap, impressive transportation. Sumalai is very comfortable driving in Bangkok.  I would not be!  I might mention that in Thailand drivers drive on the left side, a vestige of the British Colonial years.
That makes everything interesting.  I have to remember to look the right way before crossing the busy streets!

The Erawan Museum is housed in the belly and head of a gargantuan 3 headed elephant sculpture.  The treasures housed there include the private art collection of a Thai philanthropist.  He built this unique museum and garden in 1996 to provide a place to share art, culture, history, and serenity with the Thai public.  The museum collection includes ancient Chinese, Vietnamese and Thai ceramics, sculpture and furniture in an exquisite setting built to house it. The site has become a "shrine" and Thai people come there daily with interesting offerings.  

We did see a small Japanese tourist group there, and Thai people.  I did not see any other westerners.  I would place this very well curated museum, tranquil garden, and lovely outdoor coffee shop at the top of any Bangkok sightseeing list.  I now have a new favorite off beat Bangkok site to recommend.
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