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A Caution About Vimanmek Mansion

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I went to visit Vimanmek Mansion today, as I haven't done a complete visit for more than five years. Was shocked to find most of the large residences now closed, permanently. Not only are they not open to the public, but they've put up 10 foot-high walls around them so you can't even see them. The mansion itself is still open, as is the Abhisek Dusit Throne Hall and the White Elephant Museum, and the smaller residences north of the mansion, but the Carriage Museum, Suan Sri Rue Du, Suan Hong and Suan Bua are all closed and out of public view. Suan Kularb palace is apparently closed only temporarily, but it's now cut off from the rest of the buildings by the high walls. Tamnak Haw has been relocated to the far north of the complex, next to the parking lot, where it seems mainly to be used as a waiting area for drivers.

It's quite disappointing, and there's no explanation for it available. All the signs say in Thai or English is 'Closed Permanently'. The carriages and the memorabilia on display in Suan Sri Rue Du were some of the highlights of the exhibitions for me.

The one bit of good news is that the Treasures of the Kingdom exhibit has become a permanent display in the Ananta Samakorn Throne Hall next to the mansion. There's a gate near the Abhisek Dusit hall that gives you easy access to the grand structure, but admission isn't included in the Vimanmek entry fee.

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