Rare Stone and Ashtray Museum in Bangkok showcases fantastic collection of rare stones and ashtrays from all across the world. The museum is the brainchild of Banyong Lertnimitr, a manufacturer and exporter of garment. These are his favorite items which he has collected over decades. He has kept these items in his private museum.
Collection of Banyong
Banyong Lertnimitr has a fabulous collection of Chinese paintings and matchbox labels. It is said that Bunyong’s stone collection numbers is approximate 100,000 but only 2,000 are on display at any one time in the museum. The ashtrays number 3,000. Price of this collection is in millions of Thai bahts. Stones in the museum can be classified into three major categories: river, mountain and cave stones.
Fond of Chinese poetry and literature, Banyong has been collecting clippings of Chinese articles, old matchboxes and rare stones which he was young. He made his first purchase of weird-shaped rocks at the annual Bonsai Fair at the River City. Since then he has been purchasing rare stones, matchmoxes and ashtrays.
More appreciated among the museum collections is a black rock that looks like two penguins loving each other, a deep-sea stone from Taiwanese waters attached to which are filaments of dry white seaweed, and a stone that looks like it is implanted with rice grains. Fossils of a Keichousaurus, an aquatic ancient reptile native to China that lived some 248 million years ago, is a prized asset of the museum. There is the skull of a crocodile, sugar apple, a turtle, fish and shells.
The museum is open everyday from 9am to 5pm.
For reaching the museum, drive down Silom and turn right where it meets Charoen Krung Road. The museum is right on the main road. It has limited parking space too. One can get there by boat too. Get off at Si Phraya pier, stroll to the intersection by the same name and turn left.