After a good night sleep, we woke up at five; for me already 25 minutes earlier as the day of departure. Did not like too much the hurrying in the morning, so 0500 Hr finally did it. As breakfast was only served at seven, we breakfasted in our rooms. My wife has bought bread, cakes, milk and yoghurt the day prior, enough to load our “carbs” and made some coffee. Shortly before 0600 Hr we took the elevator down. The hotel was completely asleep, the receptionist snoring in the sofa in the hall. We opened the doors of the conference room where our bikes were stored and he woke up. Check-out was done by my wife, so we were free to go ahead. Ready to depart, Steve saw he was missing something: his water bottles! I hurried back up, took them out of the fridge (yes, we fill them up in the evening and store them cool) and there we went.

We left Kamphaeng Phet north-east via road #101 over Phran Kratai and Khiri Mat to the old City of Sukhothai; about 80 kilometer to bike. The first 12 kilometers were slightly up hill to a height of 113 meters, but then it was all down to Sukhothai. We made three stops. It was in general an easy trip. At Khiri Mat we left the main road to take a by-pass road # 1272 to the old city. This road was in re-construction, probably after the damage done by flooding of 2011, and it was a bit of a calvary for our sore butts. Steve suffered from his wrists, and the banging on this road was not something which would improve it. 

On the way to Sukhothai 

We past the first ruins of Sukhothai along the road side and soon we were at our destination for the day; the Orchid Hibiscus Guest House. I had chosen this accommodation because it had a small swimming pool and was in the immediate vicinity of the Historical Park, which I intended to visit it in the afternoon. Upon arrival we found that the Italian manager had not logged our booking and rooms were sold out; only wooden cottages - not worthwhile its price - were left. We took the latter and took an hour to shower, washing and preparing things for the next day. After, we met at the pool for a relaxing dip.  

The Orchid Hibiscus Guesthouse 

At noon the stomach was crying out. As the guest house was managed by an Italian, we were already dreaming of voluptuous pastas, Osso Buco and Tiramisu. Unfortunately the guest house had no restaurant and we were directed to the Sinvana Restaurant about 250 meters south of the resort. Our Italian gastronomic dream faded away and it was back to classic Thai food. After lunch we returned to the guest house for an afternoon nap and I took the occasion to oil the chain and derailleur-parts of my bike. 

Sinvana Restaurant 

Late afternoon we went down to visit some ruins on the eastern outskirts of Sukhothai's World Heritage site. The Sukhothai Kingdom was an early kingdom in north central Thailand existing from 1238 until 1438. The old capital is in ruins and designated as an historical park. It has a number of fine monuments, illustrating the beginnings of Thai architecture. The rectangular plan of the city with the most important religious building in the middle, suggests the influence in the city planning of the Khmer, who always placed the principal shrine in the centre surrounded by ponds and canals. Although most of the buildings are post-Khmer, evidence of Khmer influences remain. After being brick-fed we returned to the guest house.

Steve was also in for some western food as he found on his Blackberry the location of an Italian & Thai Restaurant in Sukhothai. We drove down to the city in search of the eating place. It was a modern thing and the food was of good quality. I settled with a Fettucini Carbonara and a Spinach Lasagna. It was heaven after five days of Thai food. After the meal we visited the local 7/11 next door and returned to our house of Gnomes. The wooden floor of the cottage was creaking when I literally climbed into the high and short canopy bed; for sure not the sleeping comfort of the night before. Tomorrow is another day.

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