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Ayutthaya (อยุธยา) is an ancient capital and modern city in the Central Plains of Thailand, 85 km to the north of Bangkok.



Founded by King U-Thong in 1350 within a bend of the Chao Phraya river, Ayutthaya was the capital of the Thai kingdom at its mightiest. Conquered and sacked by the Burmese in 1767, today only ruins of its splendor remain.


Among Thai cities, Ayutthaya's English name is probably the least standardized. Ayutthaya, Ayuttaya, Ayuthaya, Ayutaya, Ayothaya, Ayotaya, Ayudhya and even the Sanskrit original Ayodhya (usually referring to the Indian city) are all used.


Get In

By Train

The cheapest and most colorful way of reaching Ayutthaya is by train. All north and north-east line trains depart from Bangkok's Hualamphong Train Station and stop in Ayutthaya, a trip of about 1.5 hours. Second class costs 35 baht (seats can be booked in advance), while third class is just 20 baht (no reservations).


Ayutthaya's train station is to the east of the central island. The easiest way to get to central Naresuan Road is to walk straight ahead from the station and take the cross-river ferry for 2 baht.


By Bus

Buses operate every 20 minutes or so from Bangkok's Northern Bus Terminal (Moh Chit) directly to Ayutthaya. First class air-con buses charge 45 baht, while second class is 35 baht. Allow at least two hours for the trip since the buses stop rather frequently and there are often jams on the roads out of/into Bangkok.


In Ayutthaya, the central BKS bus station is on the south side of Thanon Naresuan next to the Chao Phrom Market. Songthaews to Bang Pa-In also leave from here. Some 1st-class buses to Bangkok, however, leave from the north side of the road some 500m to the west, on the other side of the khlong (canal); the queue for air-con buses is easy to spot.


From Kanchanaburi, take a local bus from the main bus station to Suphanburi for 45 baht (2 hours), then another local bus to Ayutthaya for 40 baht (1.5 hours).


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.


By Minibus

Convenient minibus service (can get stuck in traffic, but makes no stops like regular buses) operates from the Victory Monument square in Bangkok. Take BTS Skytrain to the Victory Monument station, an go right on the elevated walkway - keep on it until you cross a large road, then descend - the buses are parked at the side side of the main traffic circle). The cost is usually ~80 baht, takes around 1 hour.


Minibuses from Kanchanaburi can be arranged by guesthouses or any tour operators for around 350 baht.


By Boat

Cruise boats run up the river from Bangkok, often stopping at Ko Kret and Bang Pa-In along the way. 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 (pricy) overnight tours.


Get Around

It is advised to rent a bicycle. You should get a copy of a map for free at the shop that rents you the bicycle. If you are physically larger than most Thais, be warned that the larger bicycles are not necessarily well maintained, so be sure that they work properly (seats well attached, handlebars don't slip in relation to front wheel direction) before you leave.


Alternatively, you can hop around town by tuk-tuk or motorbike for 20-30 baht a pop. Ayutthaya's tuk-tuks are larger than the Bangkok variety and you can easily squeeze in four or more on the two songthaew-style facing benches. Only "official" tuk-tuk drivers can pick up passengers from the train station (their photos are displayed on a board at the southern end of the platform) and they are required to work to a fixed scale of charges.


The local bus to Lopburi leave the main bus station every 20 minutes and pass Wat Nah Phra Meru.



Most of Ayutthaya's sites are on the protected western half of the island, while the modern city sprawls to the east. There are additional sites off the main island.



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 dress is appropriate.


Wat Phra Si Sanphet (Sri Sanphet Rd) is the largest temple in Ayutthaya, known for its row of chedis (Thai-style stupas). Housed within the grounds of the former royal palace, the wat was used only for royal religious ceremonies. It once housed a 16-meter Buddha covered with 340 kg of gold, but the Burmese set fire to the statue to melt the gold and destroyed the temple in the process. Entrance fee of 30 baht.


Viharn Phra Mongkol Bopitah (Sri Sanphet Rd) is next to Wat Phra Si Sanphet and houses a large bronze cast Buddha image. No entry charge.

Ancient Palace (access through Wat Phra Sri Sanphet, no additional entry charge) is mostly low-lying ruins set in large grounds, with only a few free standing buildings remaining.


Wat Thammikarat (U-Thong Rd) is a working wat, but also contains the ruins of a large chedi and a huge wiharn which has a large tree growing picturesquely out of the side of one wall. No entry charge.


Wat Ratchaburana (Naresuan Rd) stands out for having a large prang recently restored to its original condition, clearly visible if you come in from the east. A major find of golden statues and other paraphernalia was made here in 1958, although much was subsequently stolen by robbers

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  • 1 year later...

Decent place to visit,got a lot of ancient ruins,elephant rides, good time during sonkran got good night life and lots of decent pubs. some decent western style hotels and even places where one can meet with those "ladies of the night". also got "short time" motel next to the karaoe place(you can even take the girl singers out if you are into karaoke singers!).good for somewhere different to go.......(also good place to go and watch the thais taking their driving test!!!!!!!)

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mike the rat I'm planning to visit Ayuthaya with my thai GF. How many days would you say would be ideal for staying in Ayuthaya.

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I'm hoping to go there as well next trip. Will be taking a local guide with me to show me around.


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A couple of pics from 07. We took a cab and he showed us around the whole area. Cost quite a bit more, 1000. for the day but nice to AC and a friendly tour guide.

Very much worth the visit.






We are always running for the thrill of it thrill of it

Always pushing up the hill searching for the thrill of it

On and on and on we are calling out and out again

Never looking down I’m just in awe of what’s in front of me.

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mike the rat I'm planning to visit Ayuthaya with my thai GF. How many days would you say would be ideal for staying in Ayuthaya.


Really depends how many temples you want to see, they have a lot. I would say 2 full days to have a look around is enough really. I would suggest getting a car to have a look around although lots of the temples are central.








Military intelligence is a contradiction in terms.


Groucho Marx

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mike the rat I'm planning to visit Ayuthaya with my thai GF. How many days would you say would be ideal for staying in Ayuthaya.

Hiya blue' If it was me with my T.G. I'd probably stay there about 4 days.There is some nice sight-seeing and the night life is ok.(try "cowboy bar" usually popular with farangs).If youve not been on an elephant the elephant rides are worth a look and youve got to see the ancient ruins and park.(you can even buy bread and feed the fish and turtles in the lakes). Hope you have a good time there ,cheers mike.

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  • 10 years later...

Any news from Ayutthaya red district ? I will be there soon for a couple of days

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