A day tour from Bangkok to Ayutthaya: The 6 best temples of Ayutthaya
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Even though I’ve been to the incredible city of Bangkok many times before, I’ve never had the chance to take a day trip to Ayutthaya. So, this time, I planned my itinerary with enough time to visit one of the most remarkable places in Thailand.
It’s only a two-hour train ride from Bangkok to Ayutthaya and along the way you can enjoy incredibly scenic views while passing through lush green fields and small villages.
The ancient city of Ayutthaya was once the capital of Thailand and is now a UNESCO Heritage site where you can wander through the ruins of palaces, temples, and statues.
In this article, I’ll share how you can make a day tour from Bangkok to Ayutthaya, just like I did, with extra tips, which temples I recommend visiting, and inspiring photos.
The train from Bangkok to Ayutthaya
Taking the train from Bangkok to Ayutthaya is the best, cheapest, and perhaps the most fun way to get there as you’ll travel by an authentic train ride through the outskirts of the city, then through green rice fields and small villages in the rural parts of Thailand.
Wherever you stay in Bangkok, depart from Bang Sue Station. This is the easiest and fastest train.
You can easily buy your ticket at the counters and it will cost you about 40 THB for a 2nd class seat, which is just €1! However, do not expect too much but enjoy the authenticity of the journey.
On the ticket, you can find from which platform your train departs and which seats you have on the train. As soon as you are on the train, an inspector will check your ticket, so make sure you keep it.
The ride is about 1h40 min and quite impressive with a few stops along the way. Don’t be afraid that you will miss your stop in Ayutthaya, almost the entire train gets off here.
TIP: Check here the map of the BRT, MRT and trains in Bangkok to help you navigate
How to explore the temples of Ayutthaya?
When you arrive at the Ayutthaya train station, you will most likely be approached by a swarm of Tuk-Tuk drivers who are eagerly offering you their ride.
A tour like this with a private driver will cost you about 1200 THB / €32 and you can visit 4-5 different temples but of course, you have to bargain and select which temples you want to visit.
Another option is to rent a bike and explore on your own but keep in mind that it is often hot and that the distances between the temples should not be underestimated. This is pleasant if you stay in Ayutthaya for several days, but if you don’t have much time, I wouldn’t recommend it.
You can rent bikes and scooters in the small street across the translation and it will cost you 60 THB for a bike.
In the same street, I rented a scooter for 300 THB / €8 and found that it was excellent for the amount of time I had, the temples I wanted to visit, and the price in general.
With the scooter, I also had more freedom to choose where, when, and for how long I went to different places. Which was amazing!
However, if you are not familiar with riding a scooter, it is best to hire a guide or private driver for your Ayutthaya day trip.
NOTE: I do not recommend elephant rides!
How much time do you need?
How much time you need completely depends on what you want to see and how enthusiastic you are. You can spend two or three full days exploring the ruins which will ensure that you won’t feel rushed and it gives you the opportunity to explore some sites without the crowds.
However, if you have only one day to visit Ayutthaya, make sure to prioritize which temples and historical sites interest you the most. Wat Mahathat, Wat Phra Ram, and Wat Phra Si Sanphet are some of the most popular ones and are all located near each other.
We left Bangkok around 8 AM and arrived at around 10 AM in Ayutthaya with a list of 5-6 temples that we wanted to visit, keeping in mind that we would need approximately one hour for each temple and a lunch break.
At 15.30, my partner and I had visited all the temples that we wanted to see and decided to head back to Bangkok by train.
The best time to visit Ayutthaya
The best time to visit Ayutthaya is between November and February when the weather is cool and dry. During these months, the temperatures range from around 20-30 degrees Celsius, making it much more comfortable for exploring the ancient temples and ruins.
The rainy season in Ayutthaya runs from May to October, which can make visiting the sites difficult due to flooding and high humidity. However, if you don’t mind the heat and rain, visiting during these months can be great as there are fewer tourists and prices tend to be lower.
It’s important to note that March and April are typically the hottest months with temperatures soaring above 40 degrees Celsius so it’s wise to plan accordingly by bringing sunscreen and staying hydrated.
Hotels in Ayutthaya
Most tourists visit Ayutthaya as a day tour from Bangkok but you can also spend a few nights there and explore this fascinating city at a slower pace.
So if you’re looking for a comfortable and budget-friendly stay in Ayutthaya, there are plenty of options available. The historic city offers a wide range of accommodations including hostels, guesthouses, homestays, hotels, and resorts.
Prices vary depending on the type of accommodation you choose – hostels and guesthouses generally range from €5-20 per night, while more luxury hotels can go up to €60+ per night.
However, if you decide to spend more days in Ayutthaya, it’s recommended to book your stay in advance during peak seasons as Ayutthaya attracts a lot of tourists throughout the year.
READ ALSO: 36 x Best places to stay in Thailand
The best temples of Ayutthaya
The first temple we visited was Wat Mahathat and also one of the highlights of the tour as the temple is best known for the Buddha head that is absorbed in the tree trunk and is therefore definitely worth a visit.
You can walk along the walking paths and admire this ancient temple’s impressive architecture and rich history that speaks volumes about Thailand’s culture and religion.
The Wat Mahathat temple is an absolute must-visit when you plan your trip to Ayutthaya as this incredible site will leave you in awe of its beauty – from the tranquility of its serene gardens to the sheer magnificence of its stupendous structure.
TIP: For this temple, you still have to pay an entrance fee and cover your knees and shoulders
ENTREE FEE: 50THB per person
The Wat Thammikarat is a marvel of graceful architecture, complete with intricately carved details and towering statues that seem to exude serenity and peace. The first thing you notice when you arrive at this temple is the hundreds of brightly colored roosters and lion statues scattered throughout the area.
One of the reasons to visit this place and what makes it so unique is that the Temple was constructed long before Ayutthaya became Thailand’s capital, and it has undergone multiple restorations over the years.
You can walk across the site and explore different buildings but I was awed by the massive main hall with its enormous columns and the black Buddha statue.
Wat Phra Si Sanphet
Before entering Wat Phra Si Sanphet, one of the largest temples we saw, we stopped at the large white building in front. The giant seated Buddha inside the Wihan Phra Mongkhon Bophit is truly incredible and must be seen to be believed.
After we had seen this huge statue, we walk to the entrance of The Wat Phra Si Sanphet Temple which resembles a miniature version of Cambodia’s Angkor Wat or Indonesia’s Borobudur.
Majestic pagodas are standing in the middle of the site, and walkways allow you to walk all the way around to admire almost every corner of the complex.
Truly impressive and I would recommend visiting this place on your trip!
TIP: To enter this temple, you’ll need to cover your shoulders and knees (although, for women)
ENTRANCE FEE: 50 THB per person – FREE to enter the Big Buddha
Wat Phra Ram
Before visiting this temple, which is opposite Wat Phra Si Sanphet, e had lunch in one of the local food stalls across the street. It was also noon and it became very humid and hot so we had to take a break.
One of the less crowded temples we visited, perhaps because it was lunchtime or because it was less impressive than the others. Nonetheless, we found it relaxing to stroll around quietly in this area and admire the beautiful architecture or what had been well preserved.
Unfortunately, you must pay to enter, but the man who checks your ticket will also let you in if you do not wish to pay.
ENTRANCE FEE: 50 THB per person
Wat Lokaya Sutharam
The Wat Lokaya Sutharam is a one-of-a-kind temple that stands out from the others we have seen. What makes this destination so unique is a reclining Buddha statue that measures 42 metres in length and 8 metres in height. Definitely worth visiting!
I enjoyed my time here because it wasn’t very crowded, and there is a remnant of an old temple dating back to the 16th century near the reclining Buddha, which made it very pleasant to stroll around.
Wat Phu Khao Thong
Wat Phu Khao Thong is one of the most beautiful and peaceful spots in all of Ayutthaya and my favourite! Unlike the other temples in the area, this one stands alone and is surrounded by a beautiful golden chedi.
This place is a bit further away from the major touristic sites and therefore most visitors skip it, which means you’ll have the temple for yourself. However, if you want to go there, it will take about 15 minutes with a scooter to get there from the reclining Buddha.
As soon as you reach the top of the stairs, you will be treated to a breathtaking 360-degree panorama of the surrounding area. We had a lot of fun taking pictures because there wasn’t anyone else around.
It’s free to visit the temples, and the path there are stunning thanks to the many statues and figures carved into the surrounding hedges.
Wat Samana Kottharam
We were on our way back to the train station after visiting Wat Phu Khao Thong when we got lost and ended up at a different, smaller temple. Even though it wasn’t anything out of the ordinary, it was nice to see this Buddha statue set against the backdrop of the ancient temples and ruins.
If you find yourself with some extra time and interest in seeing a smaller temple, this one is also recommended.
I had the pleasure of taking a day trip to Ayutthaya during my 4 days in Bangkok itinerary, and it was an experience that exceeded my expectations. The ancient city of Ayutthaya is a stunning location filled with temples, shrines, and interesting historical sites.
One of the highlights of the trip was visiting Wat Mahathat where we saw incredible Buddha statues.
This day tour provided me with the best temples in Ayutthaya while immersing me in its rich culture outside the bustling streets of Bangkok. It’s definitely something I would recommend adding to any Bangkok itinerary!
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Plan your day tour from bangkok to ayutthaya with my favorite travel apps
To plan my adventures, I use these FREE websites and apps as they provide the best information, the best deals, and they are user-friendly.
- Skyscanner – Flight deals
- Booking.com – Hotels and accommodation
- TourRadar – Group trips
- TripAdvisor – Reviews and activities
- HostelWorld – Hostels
- GetYourGuide – Activities and excursions
- RentalCars – Car rental
- Omio – Transport
- iVisa – Travel documents
- Wise – Money transfer
- World Nomads – Travel Insurance
PICTURES AND EDITING
All the pictures on this page are made and owned by me. If you are interested in some pictures to use for your magazine, website, blog, or any other purpose, just send me an email and we’ll figure it out.
Do you like the edits? My Presets will be online soon so you can edit your pictures in just one click!
The camera gear I used for this trip
I never go out without my camera and many people ask me which gear I use. So to make it quite easy, I listed all the gear I used for this trip below.
Most of the time, I travel with the Sony A7III and the Sony 24-105mm/f4 as my primary lens but depending on the location, I change to another setup. However, I love the Tamron 17-28 to shoot in the big cities.