KHLONG BANG KHUAT (คลองบางขวด)
Text, maps & photographs by Tricky Vandenberg
Updated April 2016
View of Khlong Bang Khuat
View of Khlong Bang Khuat near Wat Klang Raman
View of Khlong Bang Khuat near Wat Doa Khanong
(View of Khlong Bang Khuat near Wat Klang Raman)
(View of Khlong Bang Khuat)
(View of Khlong Bang Khuat near Wat Doa Khanong)
Ban Bang Khuat on an old military map
(Ban Bang Khuat on an old military map)
Detail of a Monthon Krung Kao 1916 map
(Detail of a Monthon Krung Kao 1916 map)
Khlong Bang Khuat is situated off the city island in the northern area of Ayutthaya in
Wat Tum Sub-district. This canal was a
Khlong lat (1) dug in the Ayutthayan era to
shortcut a meander in the old
Lopburi River. Prior this canal was dug, the Lopburi River
ran along
Wat Khae, Wat Chang Noi, Wat Chang Yai, Wat Tha Sai, Wat Sam Pratu,
Wat Long Thong, Wat Khwit, Wat Tum and Wat Klang Raman. The loop was about
5.7 Km long.

The northern stretch of the Lopburi River loop is called
Khlong Chang, while the
southern stretch is called today
Khlong Wat Tum. Only isolated stretches of water of the
loop can be found today.

Khlong Bang Khuat is named after the village
Ban Bang Khuat where the by-pass
canal had been dug. This village was situated on the east bank of the shortcut canal, just
north of Ban Suan Yo and Wat Klang Raman. [1][2]

The canal runs straight south, starting at
Wat Tha Yak, passing by Ban Bang Khuat and
ending at the mouth of Khlong Wat Tum in between Wat Klang Raman and
Wat Pom
Raman.

The digging of Khlong Bang Khuat reduced the distance between Ayutthaya and
Lopburi with 4 Km. The shortcut canal is around 1.6 Km long.

The canal must have been dug in the ruling period of King Narai (reign 1656-1688) as
this sovereign used the City of Lopburi as his seat of power. Nicolas
Gervaise (ca.
1662-1729), a young French theological student of the Société des Missions Etrangères
residing in Ayutthaya in the late 17th century wrote in the chapter on Lopburi, that "
the
king has recently had a canal dug, which reduces the distance to only nine or ten
leagues.
" Gervaise stayed in Siam from 1683 till 1686, so I guess the canal must have
been dug in the period 1680 - 1685.

Footnotes:

(1) A "khlong lat" is a channel dug across the oxbow of a meandering river to reduce
travel distances.

References:

[1] RR110520 - Interview with the Jao Awat of Wat Klang Raman - Ayutthaya, 20
May 2011.
[2] Detail map - courtesy Fine Arts Department - 3th Region.
[3] Gervaise, Nicolas (Paris - 1688) - The Natural and Political History of the Kingdom
of Siam - Translated and edited by John Villiers (1998) - White Lotus Press, Bangkok -
Chap 11 / page 35.