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The Perfect Day Trip To Ayutthaya From Bangkok- Everything You Need To Know

In this post, we’ll show you how to plan the perfect day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok. In case you’re not familiar with Ayutthaya, it’s a city which was arguably the largest city in the world in the 1700s with a population of around 1 million as the capital of Siam. At that time, New York had only 4,937 residents and even London, one of the most developed cities in Europe only had about 600,000 residents. Its location in the middle between China, Malaysia, and Indonesia also made Ayutthaya a trading capital of Asia.

Ayutthaya trip

However, after the Burmese attacks in the 18th century, the city was almost completely burned to the ground. Today Ayutthaya is one of the many small, forgotten cities in Thailand with remnants of the great ancient capital that allow you to take a glimpse of the past. Now, let’s get to the main point of this article- helping you plan the perfect day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok.

Best Time To Visit Ayutthaya

day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok

The best time to visit Ayutthaya is during the dry season, which typically extends from November to February. This period offers pleasant temperatures and lower humidity levels, making it more comfortable for exploring the historical sites and attractions.

Getting To Ayutthaya From Bangkok

day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok

The city is only 80 kilometers away from the capital and it’s very easy to get from Bangkok to Ayutthaya. You can reach by either bus or train from Bangkok. The journey lasts around one hour and both options cost less than 60 baht ($2). I decided to take the train (third-class, of course). All this makes day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok the perfect fit for your Thailand itinerary. The price of the ticket was only 20 baht (around $0.5) and that day trip to Ayutthaya actually cost me only $5 USD. I took my ticket that didn’t have a specified class, which meant that you get to ride in the third class.

Update: as of now, the prices (like everything else in this world) have increased and you can expect to pay between 90 and 200 baht for a one-way ticket from Ayutthaya to Bangkok.

That implies no AC and plastic seats, which aren’t the most comfortable seats in the world. Anyway, I never had a problem with the traveling conditions, as I’ve seen much worse and much better and I was happy to experience traveling in Thailand like a local, in the cheapest class. For me, traveling by train is the best option because it’s cheap and allows you to see the most of the beautiful surrounding nature. However, there are other ways of getting to Ayutthaya from Bangkok.

Ayutthaya Day Trip

In addition to taking the train, you can also use one of the following options.

  • Minivan: Departs from Mo Chit Bus Terminal. Faster than trains, more comfortable. Cost varies, but generally affordable (60-100 baht).
  • Bus Tour: Includes guided history tour and culture insights. Leaves from designated tour points in Bangkok. Prices vary based on tour package (300-600 baht).
  • Private Tour: Personal car and driver, customizable itinerary. More expensive, offers comfort and convenience. Prices depend on tour operator (on average around 1,500 baht).
  • Public Bus: Leaves from Mo Chit Northern Bus Terminal. Very affordable, less comfortable, frequent departures (50-70 baht).
  • Taxi: Flexible departure, private ride. Costs more, negotiate a fixed price before departure (1,000- 1,500 baht).

Things To Consider Before Your Day Trip To Ayutthaya

day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok

  1. Transportation: Plan your transportation to Ayutthaya in advance. You have several options, including train, bus, or private car. Consider the duration, cost, and comfort of each option, and choose the one that suits your preferences and budget.
  2. Time and Duration: Decide whether you want to do a day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok or stay overnight. Allocate sufficient time to explore the historical sites, experience the local culture, and enjoy the attractions without feeling rushed.
  3. Climate and Clothing: Ayutthaya has a tropical climate, so pack lightweight and breathable clothing suitable for warm temperatures. Don’t forget to carry a hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, and insect repellent. If you plan to visit during the rainy season, consider bringing a raincoat or umbrella.
  4. Cultural Sensitivity: Ayutthaya is home to several ancient temples and cultural sites, so it’s important to dress modestly and respectfully when visiting religious sites. Cover your shoulders and knees, and remove your shoes when entering temples.
  5. Itinerary and Attractions: Research the main attractions and sites you want to visit in Ayutthaya beforehand. Consider creating an itinerary to make the most of your time and prioritize the places you wish to explore.

What To Do After Arriving?


Well, looking back I think it would be a good idea to rent a bicycle. I didn’t do that and I walked the entire city on foot. Understandably, that can get really difficult when the weather is hot and humid. And that day was exactly that, hot and f*ing humid. The weather in the morning was nice, but by mid-day, I was cursing myself for not renting a bicycle at the train station. The price was only $1-$2 USD for the whole day.

The ancient city is around 3-4 km away from the train station. However, once you get there, most of the famous sights are located within a 3km radius. There are temples on the other side of the city as well, so if you think you’re in a really good shape, you can walk and see everything in the city but I’d still say renting a bicycle as the best option. You can even join a bicycle group tour, perfect for solo travelers.

Another option is to rent a tuk-tuk. These nifty three-wheelers can weave through traffic and get you close to Ayutthaya’s stunning temples and ruins faster than you can say “Wat Mahathat.” Plus, there’s something undeniably fun about zipping around in these open-air rides, feeling the breeze and soaking up the vibes of ancient Siam.

Tuk-tuk drivers usually expect a bit of negotiation. Agree on the fare before you hop in to avoid any surprises later. A good rule of thumb? Start at about half of the initial quote and meet in the middle. Or if you want to avoid that just book a tuk-tuk online before your trip.

Significance of the Ayutthaya Historical Park

Ayutthaya Ruins

Before embarking on a day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok, let me briefly introduce you to one of Thailand’s most historically significant sites. Ayutthaya Historical Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1991, is a living proof of the cultural, architectural, and historical importance of the ancient Ayutthaya Kingdom.

Established in 1350, Ayutthaya was the second capital of the Siamese Kingdom, and in its heyday, it was a global (yes, I said global, not local) trading and diplomatic hub and one of the world’s largest urban metropolises in the 1700s. The historic park showcases a blend of architectural styles – showing Ayutthaya’s role as a meeting point for a variety of cultures, from Indian to Chinese to Persian.

Enjoying this guide? Then also read- how to choose a backpacking route in Southeast Asia.

Basic Travel Etiquette

Ayutthaya kingdom

Heading out for a day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok? Let’s cover some basic travel etiquette.

Dress Code: Ayutthaya’s temples are sacred spaces. So, let’s keep it classy and respectful. Opt for clothing that covers your shoulders and knees. Think light, airy, but modest.

Behavior in Religious Sites: Keep your voice down – think library rules. And about those Buddha statues? They’re revered. No climbing on them for selfies, please!

Feet Etiquette: In Thai culture, feet are considered the lowest part of the body, both literally and figuratively. So, pointing your feet at a Buddha image, monk, or even another person is a big no-no.

Head Etiquette: Just like feet, the head has its own set of rules. It’s considered the most sacred part of the body. So, no patting kids (or anyone else, for that matter) on the head, even if it’s meant affectionately.

Photography: Go ahead, snap away! But remember, if you’re taking a photo with a Buddha statue, don’t turn your back to it. It’s considered disrespectful.

Monks: They are highly respected in Thai culture. Women, in particular, should avoid touching monks or their robes. Also, if you’re offering something to a monk, use your right hand or both hands.

What About Entrance Fees?

Ayutthaya thailand

Alright, let’s talk about the practical side of your day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok, specifically the entrance fees. Ayutthaya is a slice of history. But as with most historical treasures, there’s a cost to experience their splendor up close.

Individual Temple Fees: Most of Ayutthaya’s temples charge an entrance fee, typically around 50 THB (Thai Baht) per temple. This fee helps with the upkeep and preservation of these ancient sites.

Temple Pass: If you’re planning to visit multiple temples (and you should—they’re incredible), consider grabbing a temple pass. This handy pass covers entry to several main temples and usually costs around 220 THB.

Where to Buy: You can purchase the temple pass at the entrance of any of the main temples included in the pass. Look for the ticket counters; they’re pretty hard to miss.

A Tip on Budgeting: If your itinerary includes just a couple of temples, paying the individual fees might be more economical. But if you’re a full-blown temple explorer, the pass is your golden ticket.

Temples You Must See in Ayutthaya

If you’ve been traveling around Asia, you probably are getting sick of temples, which was exactly my case. I don’t know if it’s because of the low expectations which I had, but Ayutthaya really impressed me. I can say I enjoyed every minute in the ancient city and there are some places in Ayutthaya every traveler should see.

Ayutthaya Day Trip

The most amazing thing about Ayutthaya was the way history and real-life intermingle here. Let’s say you’re in an ancient temple, like the ones you see in an Indiana Jones movie. All you need to do is turn your head to the right and you will see a 7/11. It was funny in the beginning, but it became fascinating after some time.

Planning to visit Thailand soon? Check out my guide to traveling Thailand on a budget and our 3-week Thailand itinerary.

Wat Ratchaburana

Wat Ratchaburana

Your day trip to Ayutthaya wouldn’t be complete without visiting Wat Ratchaburana (yeah, good luck trying to pronounce that). Not only does this temple have breathtaking architecture, but it also has an interesting history. It was built in the 15th century as a cremation site for the two royal brothers who died fighting each other for the throne.

This monument was also robbed in the 1950s when looters took out several valuable items. This leads me to the second most amazing things about Ayutthaya. Even after the robberies, I still didn’t see any security guards that were guarding the monuments!

Related: Things I wish I knew before visiting Thailand.

Wat Mahathat

giant buddha head ayuthaya

This monument contains one of the most photographed places in the world. That’s a giant Buddha head just sitting there in the middle of nowhere. Even though you can’t say that by looking at the pictures, the head is enormous in real life. The most reasonable explanation that’s widely accepted is that when the city was under attack, thieves attempted to still the head from one of the temples, but they couldn’t carry it because it was too heavy, so they just left it.

Wat Phra Si Sanphet

Wat Si Sanphet: Ayutthaya trip

I think that this one was the largest temple in Ayutthaya. These ruins are the remnants of the-once glamorous royal palace.   The 3 distinctive stupas make an amazing postcard image of Ayutthaya as this is one of its most beautiful ruins. I can only imagine how this palace looked like in the 17th century since its ruins still wow tourists from around the world 500 years after the fall of the city. It used to be even better, as there was a 52 feet tall Golden Buddha in front of the palace. It’s even hard to imagine that! That monument was destroyed when the Burmese sacked the city.

Chai Watthanaram

Wat Chai Watthanaram, Ayutthaya trip

This temple is located out of the complex on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River and is my personal favorite. The entire complex consists of several fascinating temples. It was built in the 17th century and it’s a lot newer than other temples in the historical park.

Wat Yai Chai Mang Khon

Wat Yai Chai Mang Khon, Ayutthaya trip

The last or first stop, depending on where do you start your tour. This temple looks like it literally came out of a movie with all its towering stupa, golden statues and rows of Buddhas in saffron robes.

Other Notable Historical Sites

In addition to temples, Ayutthaya has a few more important historical sites that are worth visiting. For example, Ayutthaya is home to several royal palaces that showcase the architectural and historical grandeur of the city. Here are two prominent royal palaces you can visit in Ayutthaya:

Bang Pa-In Royal Palace

Bang Pa-In Royal Palace

Also known as the Summer Palace, Bang Pa-In is located approximately 20 kilometers south of Ayutthaya. This magnificent palace complex dates back to the 17th century and was revived by King Rama IV in the 19th century. The palace features a mix of Thai, European, and Chinese architectural styles. Visitors can explore the various buildings, pavilions, and beautifully landscaped gardens within the palace grounds.

Some notable structures include the Phra Thinang Aisawan Thiphya-Art (The Divine Seat of Personal Freedom), a stunning teakwood pavilion sitting on a small island in the middle of a pond, and the Ho Witthunthassana (Tower of Wisdom), offering panoramic views of the surroundings. Please note that proper attire is required when visiting the Bang Pa-In Royal Palace.

Ayutthaya Historical Study Center

While not a traditional royal palace, the Ayutthaya Historical Study Center offers insight into the history and culture of the Ayutthaya Kingdom, making it a noteworthy stop on your day trip to Ayutthaya. Located near the Ayutthaya Historical Park, this museum-like center displays artifacts, archaeological findings, and multimedia presentations that provide a comprehensive understanding of Ayutthaya’s past. It offers a glimpse into the royal court, governance, and daily life during the Ayutthaya period. Visitors can explore various exhibitions, including models of the old palace, royal regalia, and interactive displays.

Ayutthaya Floating Market

Ayutthaya Floating Market

And last but not least, we wrap up this day trip to Ayutthaya itinerary with the local floating market. The Ayutthaya Floating Market is a vibrant and lively attraction located along the Pasak River, just a short distance from the historical Ayutthaya city center. It offers visitors a unique cultural and culinary experience, resembling a traditional Thai market where vendors sell their goods and food items from boats floating on the river. Exploring the market’s narrow walkways, visitors can browse through a variety of shops and stalls offering local handicrafts, clothing, accessories, and souvenirs.

One of the highlights is the diverse range of food and snacks available, allowing visitors to indulge in mouthwatering traditional Thai dishes and street food. The market also features live cultural performances, adding to the festive ambiance, while boat rides along the river provide a scenic perspective of the surroundings. Open on weekends and public holidays, the Ayutthaya Floating Market is a must-visit destination for those seeking a delightful and immersive experience, where they can shop, eat, and enjoy the rich cultural heritage of Thailand.

Local Cuisine

thai food

Street Food: You must try the ‘Roti Sai Mai,’ a local spin on cotton candy wrapped in a thin pancake, almost like a sweet, Thai-style taco.

Traditional Dishes: For a hearty meal, dive into ‘Kuay Tiew Ruea’ – a flavorsome boat noodle soup that’s a staple in Ayutthaya.

Specific Recommendations: Head over to the floating market for an array of traditional Thai dishes. The charm of dining by the water coupled with the authentic flavors makes for an unforgettable experience. Don’t miss out on ‘Tom Yum Goong’ (spicy shrimp soup) and ‘Pad Thai’ from the local stalls.

Desserts and Sweets: For dessert lovers, Ayutthaya’s ‘Khanom Krok’ (coconut pancakes) are a must-try. These small, crispy yet soft pancakes are a delightful end to any meal.

A Few Words For The End

As you could see from my pictures, Ayuthaya was a great city once upon a time. A city filled with enormous temples, exquisite palaces and monasteries, considered one of the finest cities in the world. The remnants of Ayutthaya made me seriously think about life. It was a city that had it all and was one of the richest capitals of its time. But still, the city was torn down in a blink of an eye. It’s amazing how at one moment you have everything, and in the next, the only place you’re mentioned in are history books…

Did you ever visit Ayutthaya? Would you like to visit? Was our guide to taking a day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok helpful? Let us know in the comments below!

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ayutthaya historic city guide

Jack Lim

Tuesday 11th of September 2018

Really miss this place a lot. Those ancient temples are truly amazing

Passport Symphony

Tuesday 11th of September 2018

Indeed, Jack! It's a fascinating city


Sunday 5th of November 2017

Wow such incredible temples!

Passport Symphony

Monday 6th of November 2017

Yes, the city looks like it came out of a movie :)

Paula - Gone with the Wine

Sunday 5th of November 2017

Wow! This place looks beautiful. Sometimes the most amazing places get shadowed by some other famous cities or sights. Looks like there weren't a lot of people so you got really cool pictures. I will have to remember this place when visiting.

Passport Symphony

Monday 6th of November 2017

Yes Paula, it is an amazing place. There weren't a lot of people because I visited in the offseason when there weren't a lot of tourists

Bruce Schinkel

Sunday 5th of November 2017

What an amazing place to visit. I'll definitely need to make time for this day trip on my next visit to the area. Thanks for the insider tips like bike rental too!!

Passport Symphony

Monday 6th of November 2017

Thanks for commenting Bruce. I'm glad you found the article welcome. I hope you'll get the chance to visit Ayutthaya and have a great time there :)


Sunday 5th of November 2017

The temples of Ayutthaya are one of a kind. They are a testimony to the glory of the largest city that once stood around them - isn't it? A must visit I would say and totally agree with you about the experience! Will use your writing as my guide when I go there.

Passport Symphony

Monday 6th of November 2017

Hi Neha, thank you I'm glad you enjoyed the article. It definitely is a must visit. I hope my tips will help when you visit :)