Looking to take a day trip to Ayutthaya from Bangkok? You’ve come to the right place! As much as I love the hustle and bustle of Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, it’s always nice to get a break from the big city. A perfect day trip from Bangkok, even for those with a limited amount of time, is a quick trip to Ayutthaya. The site was declared a UNESCO Heritage Site in 1991 and offers a series of incredible temples to visit. The Ayutthaya temples are also considerably less crowded than many of those in the rest of Thailand. Ayutthaya was the former capital during the Kingdom of Siam.
A Guide to a Day Trip to Ayutthaya
How to Get to Ayutthaya
The city is easily accessible by train from Bangkok’s Hua Lamphong station. Ticket prices depend on the type of seat and trip length. Tickets can be purchased on the day of, however I recommend buying your return ticket as soon as you arrive in Ayutthaya as tickets do sell out, even in the low season. On our way there we opted for a standing ticket (or non-specified seat) on a hour train. This type of ticket costs approximately 20 baht ($0.60). For the way home we purchased a reclining seat as our train would take two hours, and the price increased to 65 baht ($2).
Getting Around the Ayutthaya temples
The most common method of getting around the temples of Ayutthaya is by tuk tuk. The going rate at the train station is 900-1000 baht ($27-30), however you can always bargain. For cheaper rates follow the street perpendicular to the train station, where you can hire a driver for 200 baht ($6)/hour. This price does not include entrance into the temples however. Although it is bit pricey, taking a tuk tuk allowed us to see a lot more than if we had rented bikes. Additionally, you can fit up to four passengers for the same price so bring (or make) some friends along for the journey!
What to Do in Ayutthaya
The tuk tuk drivers will present you with a list of the top temples to visit. The temples all cost 50 baht ($1.50 USD) to enter, with the exception of Wat Yai Chai Mongkon and Wat Lokayasutharam which are a bit cheaper. Here is a list of the Ayutthaya temples that should definitely be on your must-visit list:
- Visit Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon
- Wat Phra Mahathat
- Explore Wat Phra Si Sanphet
- Wat Lokayasutharam
Where to Eat on a Day Trip to Ayutthaya
Ayutthaya is known for both their king river prawns and their famous boat noodles. You’ll find numerous restaurants serving boat noodles. However, Klong Srabua Boat Noodle is claimed by many to be the best. You have the choice between beef or pork noodles, with both options priced at under $1 USD a bowl.
Not only is Zagreb an amazing city to visit while traveling in Croatia, but there are so many fun, easy day trips from Zagreb! Two of my personal favorites include Plitvice Lakes National Park and the charming city of Ljubljana, Slovenia.
Day Trips from Zagreb – Ljubljana
Slovenia has been on the top of my travel list for quite some time, unfortunately it is not the easiest country to get to from the US. Although I was still not fortunate enough to have the proper amount of time to really explore everything that Slovenia has to offer, on a recent trip to Croatia I managed to sneak in a quick day trips from Zagreb to the country’s capital, Ljubljana.
1. Take the train
So the biggest mistake that we made when planning our day trip to Ljubljana from Zagreb was taking the bus. Having purchased a one way bus ticket for $13, this seemed like a much more affordable option when compared to the $40 train tickets that we were seeing online. When what should have been an easy 2.5 hour bus ride turned into a more grueling 4 hour ride, due to a lengthy border crossing process and various construction roadblocks, we decided to check the train options for our return trip to Zagreb. We were able to buy a same day train ticket back to Zagreb for only $10. Slightly cheaper than the bus, the train provided a much more comfortable, faster, and extremely scenic ride back to Croatia along the water.
2. Don’t forget your passport
I know that this seems obvious, but after reminding my friend countless times to pack hers I actually forgot my own! Luckily the bus driver checked our passports before boarding the bus, however most companies in Croatia will not check until you reach the border!
3. Don’t make a strict plan for the day
What I loved most about Ljubljana was the slow, lazy vibe that encompassed the city. Ljubljana has often been named as one of the most livable cities in Europe, and I can definitely understand why! The city itself is quite small so you have time to wander and explore. Take the time to eat gelato (check out Cacao) and sip refreshing cocktails by the river. We found a cozy cafe to sit and soak up the sun, while treating ourselves to a delicious cheese plate and elderflower gin cocktails of course! We did hike up to the castle (we were lazy and rode the funicular back down) in order to get some aerial views of the city. While the views were pretty nice, I definitely wouldn’t consider this to be a must-see, despite it’s spot at Ljubljana’s top attraction.
4. Eat at Ribe & Vino (Stari Trg 28, Ljubljana, Slovenia)
Our meal here was absolutely incredible. Located on a small side street, this cozy wine spot serves up fresh seafood at great prices! We opted for the shrimp tapas assortment and the grilled bass, and we were definitely not disappointed! The house wine starts at $2 a glass and makes a great accompaniment to the meal!
5. Extend your day trip
Unfortunately we only had one day to spend in this beautiful capital. If you have the time then definitely consider spending a few nights. I was sad that I didn’t get a chance to check out the converted prison cell hostel so if you happen to stay there please send me a message and let me know how it is! 🙂
Day Trips from Zagreb – Plitvice Lakes National Park
Plitvice Lakes is easily Croatia’s most famous national park, and for a good reason as well! Plitvice has some of the clearest, bluest waters that I have ever seen! It was extremely difficult to resist jumping in for a swim! Luckily it is one of the many easy day trips from Zagreb!
Getting to the lakes is extremely easy! There are daily buses leaving from the main bus station in Zagreb. The bus journey takes approximately 2.5 hours and costs $11 each way. Tickets can be purchased directly from the main station, or ahead of time through one of the online booking sites. We took the 7:30am bus, however I would recommend taking the 5:45am bus if you can get yourself out of bed on time, because you will get a chance to see the park without the hoards of tourists.
Entrance tickets cost between $8 and $28 depending on the season. If you’re a student don’t forget your student ID, as the park offers a great discount to anyone presenting an ID!
While are a few restaurants within the park, the food options are limited to burgers and fries, so make sure to pack some of your own food for a picnic along the way!
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