KHLONG CHAKRAI YAI
Text & maps by Tricky Vandenberg - April 2013
Khlong Chakrai Yai is a still existent canal situated on Ayutthaya's city island and is the
extension of
Khlong Tho,  identical to the defunct Pratu Khao Pluak Canal, which
extension is called
Pratu Jin Canal. The canal was a shortcut in the oxbow of the old
Lopburi River. The canal has its mouth at the Chao Phraya River in front of Wat
Phutthai Sawan. Ban Chakrai was a village located on the city island but outside the city
walls. (1)

It is one of the three large canals running north to south of which two still are in existence.

Two of the five bridges along the full stretch of the canal were located on this section,
being the
Nang Hong Bridge connecting Wat Khwit Road with Wat Kuti Salak and
the wooden
Khun Lok Bridge north of the Chakrai Yai Water Gate.

On the east bank of Khlong Chakrai Yai stood
Wat Jan, Wat Rak, Wat Chanaman,
Wat Som, and Wat Hip; on the west bank Wat Khok Khamin, Wat Khun Phrom, Wat
Kao (
Wat Salak), Wat Pi Rai, Wat Pa Phat, Wat Jao Phram, Wat Jao Phrap and the
warehouse Khlang Dibuk.

Along the canal was a road called Chakrai Yai road where people bought bamboo and
where walls of houses were made for sale. There were shops selling different cloth and
there was a market called Patterned-Cloth Market. [2]

For the meaning of "Chakrai" see
Khlong Chakrai Noi.

Footnotes:

(1) At Choeng Chakrai Village outside the city wall, villagers have set  up halls and
shops to sell posts of rang and rang wood, as well as wooden floor-joists and
tie-beams, forest bamboo, ruak bamboo, and lai wood from Amphawa. [1]

References:

[1] Markets and Production in the City of Ayutthaya before 1767: Translation and
Analysis of Part of the Description of Ayutthaya - Chris Baker - Journal of the Siam
Society, Vol. 99, 2011 - page 56.
[2] Ibid. - page 66.
(Phraya Boran Rachathanin's 1926 map)
(Bellin's 1750 map)
(Kaempfer's map)