Toompang Archeological Site: the ancient historical site of Nakhon Si Thammarat

Toompang Archeological Site: the ancient historical site of Nakhon Si Thammarat

           Toompang Archeological Site is a public space and a prestigious cultural heritage of Walailak University. It is a space for studying native species of animals and plants with free access for students, staff, and the general public and is open from Monday to Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.  

              There are Walailak students who are trained as guides serving to provide information in 3 languages, including Thai, English, and Chinese. Visitors can download the mobile app developed by Walailak University named “AR Toompung”. The app was created for visitors to study the information on the site using virtual reality technology.  

                  Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of visitors to the Toompang Archeological Site decreased significantly in 2021. Thus, the Walailak Abode of Culture, the center responsible for the site’s management, had a strategy to increase the number of visitors by using 3D laser scanning technology to scan all objects and collect all the data published through the mobile app. For another media channel, please visit https://3d.wu.ac.th. The record showed that more than 3,000 visitors visiting the site before the COVID-19 pandemic in 2019. 

                 Walailak University and the 12th Regional Office of the Arts Department, Nakhon Si Thammarat, established a cooperation to drive the Toompang Archeological Site toward a historical learning center for the general public and conduct research projects for conservation. 

On the foundation day of the university in 2021, WU organized educational events on the history of the Toompang Archeological Site in which 3D models of the site were displayed, e.g., ancient doorways, carriages, traditional clothes, earthenware, etc. 

Augmented Reality 

Walailak University adopts Augmented Reality Technology in cooperation with various organizations. The AR works as a tool for visitors to get extra information. When visitors point their phone’s cameras at the objects of the Toompang Archeological Site, the AR will display narratives through digital content, moving images, and audio clips. For example, visitors can scan the QR codes of plants, which link to the information about each plant. This can help visitors learn more about what they are seeing and make connections between different items. 

Walailak University organizes a merit-making ceremony for the Toompang Archeological Site as an important Hindu temple every year in which the public can participate for free.   

             By the fiscal year 2022, Walailak University received a budget of 39.99 million baht from the government for the construction of a learning center on arts and culture in the south Walailak Abode of Culturewhich aims to be a source of learning in the formal, informal education, lifelong education of students, and the general public. It is a center for organizing academic service activities to promote arts and culture and develop life skills for students and is a recreation center in a variety of conditions, both natural and cultural helps to strengthen the aesthetics and awareness of human values by collecting all the arts and cultures of the southern of Thai region through presentations with modern technology media which has a design idea from the architectural structure of the ancient site of Toom Pung history of Nakhon Si Thammarat and the way of life of the southern people to blend in. 

              The aforementioned learning center building will be open for service in the fiscal year 2023 without any charge. Which is driven according to the 4th mission of Walailak University is to preserve and restore arts and culture customary including pure and applied arts to make the university the center of the community and a role model for society. This is in line with Walailak Universitys SDG driving approach in the issue of SDG 11 Sustainable Cities and Communities. It also supports to be a source of livinglearning and is an important tourist attraction able to develop people and create economic value for the locality and Nakhon Si Thammarat province as well. 

Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities

Goal 4: Quality Education

Goal 15: Life on Land

Goal 17: Partnerships for the Goals