Beloved attraction in Isaan
This is Wat Chai Sri, a temple just outside of Khon Kaen. It’s a beloved attraction in Thailand’s Isaan province, because of its unique murals depicting the ancient Sin Sai story. Sin Sai is a valuable literature of the former Lan Chang people. From 1354 to 1707, the Lao kingdom of Lan Chang was one of the largest in Southeast Asia… they even ruled here in Isan.
The Sin Sai tory is about Phraya Kutsarat, the ruler of Mueng Peng Chan, and his seven wives. His sons grow up in the forest and become great warriors, with guidance from the gods Indra, Garuda and Naga.
Years ago, his sister was kidnapped by a giant who wanted to marry her. Phraya Kutsarat orders his sons to go looking for her, but instead they found another brother of theirs – named Sin Sai. He had real magic, and defeated the giant and brought his aunt and her daughter back home to safety. After more trial and tribulation, Sin Sai would eventually become the ruler of Mueang Peng Chan.
The folk tale is an important part of Isan’s history, passed down from those ancestors who first migrated from Vientiane and Luang Prabang hundreds of years ago. It explains a lot about Lao’s influence on the area and its customs, traditions and architecture today. So if you want to learn more about this interesting culture and history, go to the Wat Chai Sri temple in Khon Khaen.