Ancient Thai city Ayutthaya at risk of disappearing; Reuters

Thailand – Historic City of Ayutthaya

Sprawling urban growth and water management problems are threatening conservation efforts at Thailand’s ancient city of Ayutthaya, experts say.

The Unesco World Heritage site located some 80km north of the capital, Bangkok, was once among the world’s wealthiest cities and a major trading port from the 14th to 18th centuries.

Today, the city attracts tourists from around the world who come to admire the ruins and stone Buddha statues at Ayutthaya, once the ancient capital of Thailand, then known as Siam.

However, poor urban planning and its impact on water management in the low-lying area pose a threat to the historic park, said Montira Horayangura Unakul, National Professional Officer with Unesco’s Culture Unit.

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