Our most recent Ratchabhakti Park was prompted by a gathering of Muay Thai students and teachers, including some of Thailand’s most acclaimed Grand Masters, at the conclusion of an international seminar on basic training in the art of Muay Thai and Boran Muay Thai.
This was a very appropriate venue for the ceremonial conclusion of the seminar which included sessions on the history and culture of this ancient art apart from practical martial arts skills.
With the imposing backdrop of the towering brass statues (around 14 metres high) of
seven Great Thai Kings from the Sukhothai period to the current royal house of Chakri, the park is Hua Hin’s most significant modern venue to recognise the extensive and rich royal history of the Kingdom.
Thailand’s late King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) gave the historical park the name “Rajabhakti Park”, which means ‘the park that has been built with people’s loyalty to the monarchs’. As King Rama IX has also been proclaimed as one of Thailand’s ‘Great Kings’, it’s not hard to imagine his statue joining those of his predecessors when the time is right.
Since the official opening five years ago on 26th September 2015, there has been a gradual transformation from the magnificent statues just overlooking what was Hua Hin’s biggest carpark. These days you’ll be taken to the forecourt by a shuttle after parking near to modern entry buildings and developing landscapes with all the usual tourist facilities available.
That huge paved forecourt has become an assembly area for official ceremonial activities and parades, especially those focusing on Thailand’s royal history. More development can be anticipated in the future which will allow visitors to better understand the legacy of these Great Kings to enhance this revered and ‘must visit’ attraction for visitors to the region.
FOOTNOTE – About Muay Thai Boran
Muay Boran refers to the collective Thai fighting styles that existed before the 1930s. After this period, Thai martial arts were regulated and made into the combat sports of Muay Thai. Both disciplines share numerous combat techniques and fundamentals.
Muay Thai Boran focuses on unarmed combat used on the battlefield rather than a regulated ring sport. It also has fewer rules and some styles even use weapons. Muay Thai Boran also has deadly techniques that aren’t allowed in combat sports.