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Two of the world’s great ‘Lost Cities’ – Ayutthaya and Sukhothai – are to be found in central and north-central Thailand, both of them capitals of Siam’s former medieval rulers. Virtually no vernacular architecture has survived in either (people built their homes of perishable tropical woods in those days) but innumerable brick temples, stupas, carved Buddhas and slender reliquary towers survive in situ, amid campuses of bougainvillea bushes and manicured lawns. The most iconic of all is the much photographed head of a Buddha, seemingly wrapped in the roots of a massive fig tree at Ayutthaya’s Wat Mahalat.