After a quick 8 hours in Bangkok, which were mostly spent asleep in my hotel room, I got a tuk tuk to the train station. Like most tuk tuk drivers in the city, there was an angle attached to my ride. The guy kept trying to take me to a tourism information booth, and later tried to get me to book my ticket through a guy he knew so he’d make a profit off of it too. I have no idea how many times I said no in both English and Thai, but eventually I made it to the train station with only about 15 minutes to buy a ticket and get on the next train to Ayutthaya.
I arrived at the train station outside of Ayutthaya sometime early afternoon, so I caught the ferry to the island that is Ayutthaya and set out in search of a place to stay. I had been walking for about 15 minutes trying to find the street listed in my guidebook as the place to find accommodation, when a lady drove over to me on her motorbike and told me about the guesthouse she owned. Since the price and location sounded good, I hopped on to check the place out. It actually ended up being one of the guesthouses recommended in my Lonely Plant guidebook, so I booked a few nights and settled in. I updated my social media, to let everyone back home know I was still alive, and finished another post before grabbing dinner and retiring for the evening… my first nights everywhere seem to be lame.
After sending off all of my clothes to be washed, I rented a bicycle from my guesthouse and set out to tour the ruins of old Ayutthaya. To keep you from becoming terribly bored about all the wandering and bike riding I did, I’m going to let the photos do all the talking.
Later that evening I decided to take a boat trip to a few of the more remote ruins. It was an interesting trip and I made a few friends in Martin from Holland and George from Germany. We would spend the evening following the boat trip in the night market in Ayutthaya sampling food and trying to find our way back to our hostel.
Martin, George and I ran into one another the next morning as we were renting bicycles for the day. Since it was their first full day in Ayutthaya they spent the day touring the ruins I had already been to. I on the other hand had made the decision to visit Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon, which is well-known for the row of cloth-covered Buddha images lining the outside of the temple. It’s a little farther out-of-town than most of the temples, and for some reason is twice as popular. I’m not sure why I thought cycling all the way there was a good idea, but I did it anyway. It’s certainly a lot farther than it looked on the map I had been given, and after an hour of riding through town, across a bridge, and around a few turnabouts, I finally made it. To be honest I wasn’t as impressed with this temple as I was with most of the others in Ayutthaya, but since I had spent so much energy getting there I definitely had to have a look around. After about 30 or 40 minutes I was done with Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon and once again conquered the long bike ride back into the main section of old Ayutthaya.
After searching for the floating market with no success, and visiting one more ruin in the main section of Ayutthaya, I ran back into Martin & George. It was late afternoon so we caught up, shared a few beers, and made plans to meet later that evening to tour Ayutthaya at night. We left close to 6:30 when it was still light outside, and made our way from the guesthouse to the main section of the ruins. After an hour or so of not dying in Thai traffic, while still managing to see all the ruins we wanted to, we took our bicycles back to the guesthouse and went out for dinner. During dinner I found my favorite beer and shelled out a ridiculous sum in Thai baht for it. George kindly snapped the photo below for me, while Martin cringed at the price I had paid. I’ll admit that it was a lot for a beer in Thailand, but for me it was worth every penny (still cheaper than back home) and made the end of my time in Ayutthaya perfect.
Day 1 Total: 2,113 Baht or $72.16 for mototaxi, tuk tuk & 1 night in Bangkok, train & ferry to Ayutthaya, 2 nights in Ayutthaya, food & drinks
Day 2 Total: 715 Baht or $24.42 for laundry, bicycle, boat tour, entrance fees, food and drinks
Day 3 Total: 1,554 Baht or $53.07 for 1 extra night, bicycle, entrance fee, batteries for my camera, bus ticket to Sukhothai, food & drinks… oh and 1 really expensive beer!!!!