Expanding Knowledge of Thai Culture

The first Wells graduating class enjoying a school outing

Last Wednesday, the ninth of September, was my first time visiting the Thai Royal Barge Museum. I couldn’t believe that I would get to see the real royal barge that the king had been using. It was astounding to discover that all the royal barges were handmade; it takes two years to finish one barge! The golden colors are made from real gold used in Thai temples, and approximately one hundred thousand pieces of gold are used to finish decorating one barge. The cost for a single barge is about ten million baht. The Thai royal barge is so sacred that only those who possess certain accreditation can serve as the punter. If the king wants to use the barges for certain festivals, notice must be given a year in advance so that workers can repair and redecorate the barges. There was one antique that gave a strong impression for me; I was told that it was what the first king of Thailand used. I was amazed, because it means that it had been there for hundreds of years. I really enjoyed this trip, learned a lot and discovered more about Thai culture.

– Alice, Grade 12

Students appreciated the craftsmanship involved in making the royal barges.
Students appreciated the craftsmanship involved in making the royal barges.

Going on Thai field trips has expanded my knowledge of Thai culture every time. The most recent Thai field trip was to Thailand’s National Royal Barge Museum. In the museum are real royal barges, or boats, that were used and are still used by Thai kings throughout history. It was impressive to see those shiny, golden, massive barges at such a close distance. With the explanations translated by my friends and video provided by the museum, I gained new knowledge about how and why the Thai barges were made, the different types of barges, their formations and their importance to the Thai people. I enjoyed my time on this field trip and felt closer to the culture of which I’ve become part.

– Kieren, Grade 12

The figurehead of the Narai Song Suban Royal Barge
The Anantanakharat Royal Barge
A guide explains the construction of the barges
Ms. Aum and students pose in front of the Krut and Suphannahongsa Royal Barge

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