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From Chiang Mai to Ayutthaya by train

06:30
Chiang Mai
19:15
Ayutthaya
12h 45m
 Refund
07:15
Chiang Mai
19:44
Ayutthaya
1d 12h 29m
 Refund
08:50
Chiang Mai
18:05
Ayutthaya
9h 15m
 Refund
15:30
Chiang Mai
03:38
Ayutthaya
12h 8m
 Refund
15:30
Chiang Mai
03:38
Ayutthaya
12h 8m
 Refund
17:00
Chiang Mai
04:24
Ayutthaya
11h 24m
 Refund
17:00
Chiang Mai
04:24
Ayutthaya
11h 24m
 Refund
18:00
Chiang Mai
04:58
Ayutthaya
10h 58m
 Refund
18:00
Chiang Mai
04:58
Ayutthaya
10h 58m
 Refund
18:00
Chiang Mai
04:58
Ayutthaya
10h 58m
 Refund

How to get from Chiang Mai to Ayutthaya

If you believe that after having seen the ruins of Angkor you can easily skip Ayutthaya, you are totally wrong. There is virtually nothing in common between the two cities of the great Kingdoms of the past. Where the abandoned ancient cities of Angkor, Sukhothai or Si Satchcnalai impress with their monumentality, Ayutthaya wins with harmonious coexistence of the ruined temples of the past and the bustling modern city. Cosy stylish guesthouses dot the island and even a foreign enclave of Naresuan Road does not feel too tourist-trapy. Admire the grandeur of Wat Phra Mahathat where a famous Buddha’s face is hidden between the roots of the trees; soak up the atmosphere of solitude in a mysterious Wat Kudi Dao; enjoy historical reconstructions while savouring the best of Central Thai cuisine at Ayutthaya floating market or cruise Chao Phraya to take in the city from the water. Elegant chedis, shady alleys, busy temples or rooster fights – be sure that your visit to Ayutthaya will produce long-lasting memories.

Getting to Ayutthaya from Chiang Mai

The distance from Chiang Mai to Ayutthaya is about 630 km. You can cover it by bus or by train. With buses you have more choices with departures throughout the day; travelling by train is normally much more convenient, especially if you opt for a night sleeper.

From Chiang Mai to Ayutthaya by bus

All Bangkok-bound buses departing from the Arcade Bus Station in Chiang Mai pass through Ayutthaya. The Arcade Bus Station is located in Thanon Kaew Nawarat, some three km northeast from the Old City. Buses are frequent, and you can buy tickets right on the spot. It takes from eight to 9 hours to get to Ayutthaya. Tickets cost from THB500 to THB900, depending on the type of the bus. Normally some snacks are served on board or a meal at a cafe is included into the bus ticket price. In Ayutthaya buses call to the Northern bus terminal, 5 km east of the Old City.

From Chiang Mai to Ayutthaya by train

Travelling by train is a great way to explore Thailand. A bit slower than buses, trains are definitely more comfortable if you choose a sleeper cart. Both lower and upper berths are wide enough and are equipped with curtains which pull together and ensure a decent level of privacy for passengers even in the second class sleepers. The only drawback of travelling from Chiang Mai to Ayutthaya by train – if we can put it like this – is that the night trains arrive to the destination too early in the morning. Well, but you can then witness the sun rising over centuries-old ruins; is it not a worthy compensation? Train #10 leaves Chiang Mai at 6pm and arrives to Ayutthaya at 4.58am. It has standard second class AC sleepers at THB 1,106 and the same class women only sleeper which is a great choice for women travellers, especially those who travel solo. There is a more expensive first class AC sleeper at THB 1,648 which accommodates two – as always, it is a great choice.
Train #14 leaves Chiang Mai an hour prior to the #10, at 5pm, and reaches Ayutthaya at 4.23am. There is also a second class AC sleeper (THB 1,106) and a luxury first class single occupancy at whooping THB 1,648
Then there is an afternoon #52, leaving at 3.30pm and arriving at 3.38am, which is also a second class AC sleeper at a more bargain price at THB 1,046. It helps somehow to put up with quite an inconvenient schedule.
A day train #8 at 8.50am is the cheapest (THB 866) and the fastest one and covers the distance between Chiang Mai and Ayutthaya in mere nine hours compared to 11-12 hours of the previously mentioned trains, but it has second class AC seats only so think twice before committing to this kind of journey.

Tip: There are food vendors constantly patrolling the carts, so snacks and refreshments are never in short supply, but it is illegal to sell any alcoholic beverages on the train.

The train station in Ayutthaya is located on the other side of the river, east of the island. To get to the main area of guesthouses in you need to cross Chao Phraya and walk westwards towards Naresuan Road.

Getting around

Ayutthaya is best explored on two wheels – whether it is a bicycle or a motorbike. You can rent your iron steed from guesthouses in Naresuan Road. Expect to pay THB30-50 for a bicycle and THB200-250 for a scooter.

Important! New and more severe rules and punishments towards drivers without a valid driver’s licence are being imposed all over Thailand at the moment. If you do not have an international or Thai driver’s permit, refrain from renting a motorbike. If caught red-handed, you may face a fine of THB10,000 or a one-month prison term.

Note: Even if drivers in Ayutthaya are generally friendly and cautious, riding a bicycle is not a 100% safe and comfortable experience. Ayutthaya is a large modern city with relatively busy roads both on the island and on the other side of the river. There is no such thing as a historical centre free from cars which is the case in Sukhothai. Still many visitors choose to cycle around Ayutthaya, but if you are not too much of a cyclist, hiring a tuk-tuk may prove a better idea.

Tuk-tuks in Ayutthaya are ubiquitous and quintessentially Thai. Red, yellow, green or whatever other colour you fancy, they glitter with polished metal mouldings and the rides are delightfully affordable. Trips over the island should cost about THB 600 - 1,000. There are tailor-made tuk-tuk tours on offer – just ask in your guesthouse. If it is your first time in Ayutthaya, it is then not a bad idea to try one.

To get to the outlying districts from the island you do not necessarily need to go over a bridge. There are several ferries plying the waters of Chao Phraya, the most useful ones being the ferry close to the train station in the eastern part of the city and the one by a highly recommended Sai Thong restaurant in the northern part of the island. A ferry trip costs just a few baht and can make your way to some of the sights off the island considerably shorter (if nor quicker).

Where to stay

The main backpackers’ strip is Naresuan Road. There are plenty of cheap guesthouses and Western-type cafes and restaurants. Even if the area feels a bit too overpopulated with tourists, the vibe is friendly and the location is convenient as there is a night market on the riverfront some 10 minutes away; a bus station from where minibuses to Bangkok leave is just a couple of blocks away in the opposite direction; and some of the most famous temples, including Wat Mahathat and Wat Ratburana, are within a walking distance, too. You can rent bicycles and motorbikes right on the spot and all the operators speak English.
There are very atmospheric guesthouses which occupy old teak masons not far from Wat Phra Mahathat, but they are very popular with locals, so it is quite difficult to find a vacant room there during week-ends and Thai holidays.

Activities

There are plenty of things to keep you busy in Ayutthaya for at least three days; and if you prefer a slower pace, you will not get bored for more than a week of constant sightseeing. There are temples to every taste: large abandoned ruins; a combination of old stones and modern wiharns; bearing obvious Hindu influence prangs; cosy local wats bursting with bougainvillea blossom and bright colours of ceramic roosters. There are at least three floating markets, a water theatre, museums – including an unusual Million Toys museum, – a Foreigner Quarter or a Japanese Village. You can cruise the Chao Phraya river – or even get as far as Bangkok by boat – or cycle around the island or outskirts of the city exploring the less known temples which will be at your complete disposal with no other soul bothering your visit. Well, and you can ride an elephant, too.

Tip: In December, the city welcomes visitors of the annual Ayutthaya World Heritage Fair. It is a colourful, a weeklong festival held on the premises of Wat Phra Mahathat where a large-scale light and sound show takes place. Tickets cost THB200-THB500, but they are worth every satang of it. In the adjacent Wat Langka Khao a replica market of the Ayutthaya period is held with an abundance of stalls selling local delicacies and seashells used instead of coins. A smaller but similar Three Religions festival is held in September in Wat Chai Watthanaram with free of charge performances. If you do not manage to attend the bigger event, try not to miss at least the latter.

Passenger reviews out of total 2,824 passengers who traveled with us on this route.

At 12Go our operators offer three types of service:

Cheap, Fast, Good - but you can usually pick only two of them!
Cheap & Fast won’t be Good. (e.g. buses from/to Khao San Road, local buses or 3rd class trains)
Cheap & Good won’t be Fast. (e.g. VIP trains in Thailand)
Fast & Good won’t be Cheap. (e.g. private limousine services, or VIP24 buses vs Express buses)

Make your choice! Please remember that while we are closely monitoring the services, we are still an agency marketplace. That means we focus on ticketing services and route availability & coverage rather than on the factual seat reclining angle you will get on the bus today.

Dec 9, 2018
train #8 Class II AC, Thai Railways
★★★★☆
We had 3x meal for 9 hours journey.All the food served is halal,which is great for us as muslim.You can see the halal symbol on the packaging.The air conditioner is cold.So,please bring a long a jacket.The toilet is not in good condition.Smelly.Need to work on it.The staff is really friendly.
Nov 29, 2018
train #8 Class II AC, Thai Railways
★★★★★
Ticket pickup was easy to find and very quick service. Train was cleaner and not at all smelly in the toilets this time. The train carriage concierge was excellent, she helped us with our bags, told us well in time when to get off and always had a genuine smile. Great trip.
Sep 14, 2018
train #10 Class II Ladies Only, Thai Railways
★★★★★
Nice and easy to pick up tickets and the train was very clean and everything explained by female conductor about time of arrivals and the does and Do nots on the train
Aug 17, 2018
train #10 VIP Sleeper, Thai Railways
★★★★★
We travelled in first class, overnight on train #10. Everything was easy, including picking up our tickets from the Bossotel across from Chiang Mai station. The train was nice, the beds were comfortable, and it was a pretty quiet ride. We were pushed into ordering food, and our departure at Ayutthaya station felt very rushed, but otherwise everything was good. They had a vegetarian option for dinner, which was overpriced but tasted fine. All in all, it was a good experience that I would recommend.
Aug 1, 2018
train #8 Class II AC, Thai Railways
★★★★☆
good service with drinks and food
Jul 30, 2018
train #8 Class II AC, Thai Railways
★★★★☆
It took about 9 hours and was comfortable, even when traveling with a 12 month old. The above head racks were spacious enough to fit all our luggage, even the giant back pack. The train left and arrived pretty close to its scheduled times. Our only suggestion is to sell food or snacks. The mackerel in curry sauce made our baby vomit, and until then she had really been enjoying Thai food.
Jul 21, 2018
train #10 VIP Sleeper, Thai Railways
★★★★★
Perfect trip!
Jul 21, 2018
train #8 Class II AC, Thai Railways
★★★★☆
Fine railroad travel
Jul 20, 2018
train #10 Class II Sleeper AC, Thai Railways
★★★★★
Tickets were easy to pick up, just across from the train station. Our 2nd class sleeper was clean and comfy. Our porter made sure we were awake for our stop.
Jul 3, 2018
train #10 VIP Sleeper, Thai Railways
★★★★★
One of the better train rides I've been on. I had the whole cabin to myself, the amenities were as good as they come, it wasn't loud (still loud enough it being a train but better than my previous Thai railways experience) so it was easier to sleep and it was nice and clean. I finally see how the overnight train rides can replace a hotel booking, it was practically like being in a hotel. . It was pretty damn cold though but it is to be expected in Asian trains. The 12go staff at bossotel was also nice, it was good to be able to sit at the bossotel reception and use the wifi (I didn't get a local sim) since I got there a bit early. They didn't have a water cooler though unlike their Bangkok office but it's no big deal. Overall, a surprisingly nice and pleasant train journey.
May 22, 2018
train #10 VIP Sleeper, Thai Railways
★★★★☆
The car is overall clean and convenient. We travelled from Chiangmai to Ayutthaya. The staffs were helpful to cover us for food and call us up upon arrival at 5am, given us as foreigners not speaking a single Thai word. The only big thing to complain was the first class car was right after the engine car. The air was mixed with the smoke of the engine car from the air conditioning. I was very sensitive to smell and slept in the upper berth. My husband felt nothing about this.
May 9, 2018
train #10 Class II Sleeper AC, Thai Railways
★★★★★
The conductor was kind enough to wake me up and tell me which stop to get off at. Super helpful in a foreign country! Fun experience
Mar 31, 2018
train #8 Class II AC, Thai Railways
★★★☆☆
Got up there basically on time. Seats were ok. Food ????
Feb 19, 2018
train #10 VIP Sleeper, Thai Railways
★★★★★
Everything went very good. It was just like I read: easy to book, easy to pickup the ticket, train on time and very clean and confortable. 5 stars!
Feb 16, 2018
train #52 Class II Sleeper Fan, Thai Railways
★★☆☆☆
Train 52 had some major exhaust issues. Even with the windows wide open it got so bad I had to pay $18 US to upgrade to an empty AC sleeper where it was less noticeable. When I got off the train it literally filled the station with a cloud of smoke. This seems dangerous!
Feb 3, 2018
train #10 Class II Sleeper AC, Thai Railways
★★★★★
Great experience.
Jan 8, 2018
train #8 Class II AC, Thai Railways
★★★☆☆
The ticket included simple food and beverages service. Seats, toilets and air conditioning are ok. There’s no information in the train about where you are but the service lady will let you know when you have to get off. All in all, our trip was ok
Jan 6, 2018
train #10 Class II Sleeper AC, Thai Railways
★★★★★
First night trip by train. excellent experience.

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