Thousands of people go each year to the ancient capital of Phitsanulok, Thailand, 215 mi/345 km north of Bangkok, to see the 14th-century bronze Phra Buddha Shinnarat, one of the most important Buddha images in the country. The Nan River, one of the Chao Phraya River's most important tributaries, runs through the heart of the city. As such, house boats were a once symbol of Phitsanulok; those that are left have been converted into cafes and restaurants. The town also has an interesting folk museum. A Buddha casting factory offers visitors a chance to see how the statues are made.
A major transportation hub, Phitsanulok is well connected to Bangkok, Chiang Mai and other Thai cities by bus and train. An airport is just south of the downtown area. Bus No. 4 runs there, although tuk-tuks are plentiful.
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