Day 32: Ayutthaya to Bangkok

by - May 30, 2011

Sunken Buddha
I hadn’t quite covered Ayutthaya as well as I would have liked yesterday, but due to the regular trains to Bangkok, I was free to spend as much time exploring as I liked.  I had a fantastic breakfast cooked for me at the hostel in the morning - it was far and away the nicest place I have visited on the trip to date.  I left my bag and walked to Wat Phra Mahatat.  This was one of the earlier temples and contained the iconic Buddha statue that had been engulfed by the roots of a tree.  This wasn’t quite as impressive as I expected it to be - it is one of the most overused photos of Thailand, but it was unique and a good snap for the album.  I grabbed a tuk-tuk from outside the temple and then went to my last location in the city, which was 3km to the north.  This was another of the iconic photos of Thailand, though it isn’t actually a very heavily visited sight due to its out of town location.  The sight was Phu Khao Thong, also known as Golden Mountain and is an enormous monument that offers great views over the town and the countryside.  It was also, as I mentioned before, pretty much deserted which was pleasant.

Phu Khao Thong, Ayutthaya
I now felt content to leave Ayutthaya, so got my tuk-tuk to drop me off at the station for the train to Bangkok, my final destination of the trip.  I got a ticket for the 12.19 train but the rail service in Thailand is fairly casual when it comes to arrival times, so I spent about an hour and a half sitting on the platform waiting.  An Indonesian guy who I had met on the boat yesterday happened to be going south too, so we got talking and this passed the time somewhat, but it was still a massive frustration.  When the train finally arrived it was pretty packed and was full of the standard third class carriages.  I had no problem with this (the ticket for the 1 and a half hour journey cost about 20 pence) and it actually meant that I got talking to an old local woman who was watching as I looked through the photos on my camera and was fascinated by some of the places I had visited. It was quite a touching experience to show somebody who had never left Thailand the outside world that she may never have seen.  I arrived in Bangkok at about 4pm and got a tuk-tuk to my hotel (I am paying for a slightly more expensive place) on Khao San Road, where I did pretty much nothing apart from grabbing a bite to eat and watching TV.  I have 3 days in Bangkok, so I didn’t feel that it was particularly pressing for me to get exploring.

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