During the rush hours, the trains will be overcrowded and you will have to stand if you do not have a reserved seat. Check the Thai Railways website here for a rough guide on times and prices, but bear in mind the "last updated" line in the upper right. The Walk across the main road and down the small street straight ahead. For more details, call Tel. There is also a central bus station east of town serving northern destinations. It can be reached by songthaew. Ask around to find the appropriate stop.
Some 1st-class buses to Bangkok, however, leave from the north side of the road some m to the west, on the other side of the khlong canal ; the queue for air-con buses is easy to spot. Convenient mini-bus service can get stuck in traffic, but makes no stops like regular buses operates in front of the Northern Bus Terminal , on the other side of the road.
Mini-buses don't have much space for big bags, and you must wait until the bus is fully filled.
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You'll need to book in advance as there are no scheduled services, just trips for tourists. It's a fairly lengthy trip at least one whole day and some of the larger boats offer pricey overnight tours. Travelling by boat to Ayutthaya is popular among foreigners as it reveals the beauty and lifestyle of the people on both sides of the Chao Phraya River, and also recalls life at the time of the Ayutthaya Kingdom when the Chao Phraya River served as the highway for trade with foreign countries.
Cycling around the ruins is the most enjoyable and fun way to spend the day. The archaeological park is easily reachable and manageable on bike even if you aren't very fit. The paths are paved and the distances between temples are small. The bicycles are not necessarily well maintained, so be sure that they work properly wheels are firm and inflated, seats adjusted to your height and well attached, handlebars don't slip ; good shops will give you a bike lock as well.
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There is a good bike shop directly opposite the train station. The park opens at It is recommended that you begin your tour early, before the tour groups arrive from Bangkok. Take a big bottle of water with you. Alternatively, you can get around town by tuk-tuk motorized 3-wheeler. Ayutthaya's tuk-tuks are larger than the Bangkok variety and you can easily squeeze six people in on facing benches.
Only "official" tuk-tuk drivers or tourist "helpers" can pick up passengers from the train station. You can also flag down tuk-tuks from the street and try to hire them. Most drivers carry with them a stack of postcards featuring the famous sites of the city to ease communications.
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They also are used to the standard temple-hopping circuit. If you have a map you can point out any of the destinations that you wish to see and they'll often quote a trip price and will wait for you at each stop. The driver may have a book filled with positive testimonials in a range of different languages from tourists who were his past passengers.
Don't let these positive comments convince you otherwise, simply say "no, thanks" and move on to find another tuk-tuk driver with whom you can negotiate a fair rate. From Ayutthaya, mini-buses can be taken from the railway station into the city. Boat trips to enjoy the beautiful scenery and Thai lifestyle along the Chao Phraya River, the Pa Sak River and around the town island of Ayutthaya are available. The fare depends on the route and duration. Rice barges are also available to groups. They offer a relaxed way to see Ayutthaya.
The ruins indicate that Ayutthaya was one of Southeast Asia's and probably the world's most prosperous cities in the 17th century. In addition, there were many other palaces and buildings for royal visits outside Ayutthaya, such as the palace at Bang Pa-In and Nakhon Luang Building at Nakhon Luang. It seems there is an ongoing scam, not against tourists, but against the government.
Ladies selling tickets take the money from you and allow you to enter, but will not give you a ticket and probably put the money in their own pockets. If you want your money to go for temple renovation and conservation instead of going into private pockets, insist on a ticket. The temples with entry charges are usually in ruins, so there is no dress code, although visitors are still requested to refrain from blatant stupidity like clambering up the Buddha statues.
Working temples tend to charge no fees and there are often no officials to check that a dress is appropriate though it is advised to follow these customs to show respect for sacred places. Tourism is a major source of income. We welcome suggested improvements to any of our articles.
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See Article History. Learn More in these related Britannica articles:. The latter may have been…. Ayutthaya in the 17th century, according to European visitors, was one of the wealthiest and most cosmopolitan cities in the world. Although it lay inland, it was easily accessible to oceangoing vessels traveling up the Chao Phraya River, and it became a thriving international trade…. In , when a revolt flared up, Bayinnaung again invaded Siam. Because the Siamese put up fierce resistance, Ayutthaya was not captured until August The Myanmar king installed a new vassal on the….
Thailand , country located in the centre of mainland Southeast Asia. Located wholly within the tropics, Thailand encompasses diverse ecosystems, including the hilly forested areas of the northern frontier, the fertile rice fields of the central plains, the broad plateau of the northeast, and the rugged coasts along the narrow southern…. History at your fingertips.
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