Visiting Thailand and looking for some unique day trips from Bangkok? I will share all the best options and help you choose the most suitable day trip from Bangkok for your own needs.
Bangkok is the capital of Thailand and it attracts millions of tourists every year. While Bangkok has a lot to offer, there are places nearby Bangkok that are worth visiting as well. Even if you have limited time in Bangkok, you can still plan an escape to one of the biggest open-air museums or spend the day in the ancient capital.
Maybe you prefer to hang out on the beach? Or maybe you are on the hunt for the best photo locations? Let’s not forget unique locations like floating market and railway market. Either way, I got you covered.
In this article, you will find the best day trips from Bangkok together with a lot of useful tips. Sharing how to reach these locations, places to see, where to eat, and more essential things to know to make your travel experience as smooth as possible.
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Overview of the best day trips from Bangkok
As you can imagine, Bangkok has a lot to offer regardless of your expectations, your interests, or your budget. However, why don’t you discover beyond the capital of Thailand? Considering how easy it is to move around Thailand, you can take one or more short trips from Bangkok and visit some epic places to visit nearby Bangkok. And I am here to help you plan it! Let’s get to it!
Samut Prakan Ancient City
Samut Prakan Ancient City is famous for letting you take a journey through Thai Culture in a fun and easy way. And it is hands down one of the best day trips from Bangkok.
This is one of the largest open-air museums in the world, and here you can find remarkable castles, palaces, temples, and sculptures. The park has a miniature version of the most famous buildings across Thailand.
Somehow travelers often miss this unique location and that is probably due to the limited amount of time or the fact that it is located outside of Bangkok. However, if you are on the clock, you simply must visit Ancient City as you can visit the essentials of Thailand in just one afternoon. I am here to help you plan your time and share tips for visiting Samut Prakan Ancient City.
How to get to the Samut Prakan Ancient City?
The Samut Prakan Ancient City is one of the easiest Bangkok day trips since it is located 30 km away from central Bangkok.
If you are planning to use public transport, take BTS Skytrain and head to Kheha. It is the final stop. From there you have to take exit 3 and jump on a minivan number 36 that brings you to Ancient city. While Skytrain price can vary, the minivan will cost you 10 THB (0.27 EUR) per person and the entire ride from central Bangkok will take you approximately 1 hour.
As an alternative, you can use a taxi. If you decide to catch a taxi on the street, you can expect to pay around 1000 THB (27.16 EUR). I advise you to download an application called Grab instead and pay something between 300-500 THB (8.15-13.58 EUR). Grab can be used also around Bangkok and I highly recommend it.
Overall, I advise you to check the traffic on Google maps. If you see a lot of busy areas on your way, it is better to use BTS Skytrain and avoid the traffic. On a good day, a taxi can take 30 minutes.
And in case you don’t want to take care of planning, you can just book a day trip from Bangkok with a tour. Click here to book yours.
What to see in Samut Prakan Ancient City?
As you already know, in the Ancient City you can find castles, palaces, temples, and sculptures. This is one of the best day trips from Bangkok as it will give you a chance to take a deep dive into Thai culture through the art and architecture of the country.
The highlights of the park are the Buddhavas of Anatta Universe, the Sanphet Prasat replica, the Fish Temple (under renovation in 2022, but still worth a visit), the Pavilion of the Buddhist saint, and the canal with the Thai boats. These are just some of the wonders you can find here. During the high season, you can also see a floating market.
The Samut Prakan Ancient City is one of the places to visit nearby Bangkok that you can’t miss. And you can easily spend an entire day here, wandering around and exploring.
Where to buy the tickets for Samut Prakan Ancient City?
I highly recommend purchasing your tickets in advance as it is more convenient and 50% cheaper. You can also purchase it together with Erawan Museum and visit it after as it is one of the best hidden gems in Bangkok. You will need to download the Klook application and show your ID at the office. Click here to get your ticket.
If you choose to buy the tickets at the office, it is going to cost you 700 THB (19.02 EUR). Card payments are accepted.
Additional tips for visiting Samut Prakan Ancient City?
Considering the size of the park, it is impossible to simply walk around. The path from the entrance until the end of the city is 20 km long and after you will still have to come back. However, there are multiple options that you can choose from.
Renting a regular bike will cost you 150 THB (4.07 EUR). Or you can choose an electric bike which is 250 THB (6.79 EUR) for 3 hours and 100 THB (2.72 EUR) more for every extra hour. Nevertheless, it is a long distance to cover. Add Thai heat and it can become very challenging, especially if you choose to visit on a regular bike.
The best and most convenient way is to rent a golf cart which costs 350 THB (9.51 EUR) for the first hour and 100 THB (2.72 EUR) for every extra hour. You will need a driver’s license and an ID to rent a golf card. This is the fastest way to explore Ancient City, so it is great if you are on the clock. Alternatively, there are trams and Tuk-Tuk available.
Inside the park are several bars and restaurants where you can have a meal or grab a snack. However, don’t forget to bring your water, a hat, and use tons of sunscreen.
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market
The Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market are two of the most famous market in the Bangkok area. You probably have seen photos and videos of these unique places in Thailand, and they are one of the best day trips from Bangkok. As they are located a few kilometers away they are often combined, nevertheless, there are some important things to know before visiting The Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market.
How to get to Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market?
You can visit both of the markets on your own using a taxi, but despite the affordable prices, it won’t be so cheap. It is around 1000 THB (27.16 EUR) to get to Railway Market from Bangkok, additional money for waiting, the road to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, and again 1000 THB (27.16 EUR) to get back to Bangkok. Keep in mind, that these markets close shortly after midday so plan your visit during the morning.
Normally, I prefer to plan my own day trips and do things on my own, but this time I choose to book a group tour just to save some trouble and I am glad I did. I highly recommend you do the same. First, you go to the train station, jump on the train and arrive at the Mae Klong Railway Market. After 30 minutes the train leaves so you can see the market transformation when it happens. Then you head to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, jump on a 30 minutes boat ride and enjoy lunch in the market afterward. And surprisingly, it costs even less than taking a taxi. Click here to book your tour to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market.
Unmissable experiences in Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market
When visiting Mae Klong Railway Market, you cannot miss the train passing the market. You can see how in a short period of time, every single shop in the market packs up and a train squeezes in between these shops. There is a red line on the pavement that you shouldn’t cross when the train is approaching, but locals are there to guide you either way.
Trains will arrive at Mae Klong Station at 8.30 am, 11.10 am, 2.30 pm, and 5.40 pm, and depart the station at 6.20 am, 9 am, 11.30 am, and 3.30 pm. But as I said, the markets are closed shortly after midday, so you will miss the process. 11.30 am is the latest time to visit this market and experience it fully.
When in the Floating Market, you have to jump on a boat to do some shopping and bargaining. During the peak season, it can get pretty intense and some people call this a tourist trap, but I personally loved it as I have never seen a floating market before.
During the boat ride, you can find literally anything – clothes, accessories, souvenirs, fruits, and even some restaurants. You are not obligated to buy anything, but who can say no to mango sticky rice, right? And just like the other market, it is almost empty in the afternoon, so you will be the only one on the channel.
Where to eat in Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market?
Mae Klong Railway Market is very affordable, however, food choices are very limited. You can grab a coconut or a fruit, but keep the lunch for the floating market.
One of the highlights of the floating market is coconut pancakes sold by a woman on the boat. As mentioned, endless fruit choices, mango sticky rice, fried bananas. And some restaurants in the middle of the market. I choose to shop from the boats and sit together with the sellers. Portions are smaller, so you can try many different things.
Additional tips for visiting Damnoen Saduak Floating Market and Mae Klong Railway Market?
If you are planning a visit on your own, make sure you check the train schedule and visit during the morning. Also, bargain when it comes to renting a boat in the floating market.
Train your bargaining skills to negotiate a reasonable price for your boat tour. If you come with a tour that I recommended, a boat ride is included, however, if you are visiting alone, you shouldn’t pay more than 1000 THB (27.16 EUR) for it.
Scam alert! If you are visiting the floating market with a taxi, make sure they bring you to the right locations. Turns out that some taxi drivers leave you on the other side of the channel and the only way for you to get to the market is to take a very overpriced boat ride.
Pattaya is one of the most popular places in Thailand and a popular day trip from Bangkok, as it is located 130 km away from Thailand’s capital. It is famous for its long sandy beach, vibrant nightlife, golf clubs, and aqua parks. If you are spending your holidays in Bangkok and you are craving some beach time, Pattaya should be your number one choice.
How to get to Pattaya?
When it comes to public transport in Asia, I always use 12go Asia. They offer different kinds of services for great prices and I never had an issue with my tickets. And this way, you can pay in your preferred currency online. Click here to see more.
The bus is probably the best way to reach Pattaya. You can find the buses at the Ekkamai bus terminal, or even the Suvarnabhumi airport. The ride will take approximately 2,5 hours depending on the traffic and prices start from 163 THB (4.43 EUR).
Minivans are also a comfortable option to reach Pattaya and they leave daily from Mochit Minivan Terminal. The ride will be slightly longer and more expensive, as prices start from 210 THB (5.70 EUR), nevertheless, minivans are more comfortable.
A taxi is also a good option in case you are not on a budget and want to stay comfortable. A taxi ride from Bangkok to Pattaya will cost you around 1500 THB (40.75 EUR).
Finally, the cheapest and longest option to reach Pattaya is the train. The prices start from 30 THB (0.81 EUR) and the ride will be up to 4 hours.
What to see in Pattaya?
Despite being the most visited city in central Thailand after Bangkok, Pattaya is not the most picturesque place in the country. The place is more fun and activity orientated, nevertheless, some places deserve your attention.
The Sanctuary of Truth Museum is a wonderful castle built in wood, overlooking the sea. This is one of the best places to see in Pattaya and probably the main cultural attraction of the area. This is the largest wooden castle in Thailand and you will have to pay 500 THB (13.58 EUR) to visit the sanctuary. It is open every day from 8 am to 6 pm.
Buddha Mountain is a few kilometers away from Pattaya center and it is one of the most unique places to see in Thailand. Wat Phra Khao Yai also deserves a visit as it is the largest representation of Buddha. Wat Chai Mongkhon is in central Pattaya and it’s a lovely temple where you can see the typical architecture and sculptures of Thai culture. There is no admission fee to visit the temple.
Mini Siam is a place for adults and families, where you can see reproductions of different places in Thailand and all over the world. Mini Siam is open every day from 9 am to 6 pm. The admission fee is 245 THB (6.66 EUR) and you can purchase your tickets here.
Where to eat in Pattaya?
J Tum Kitchen was my choice when I visited Pattaya and I loved the taste of seafood. The prawns were absolutely amazing and the service was awesome! It’s one of the best restaurants in Pattaya for sure. And you won’t be disappointed.
Additional tips for visiting Pattaya
Pattaya means good time and beach, the most popular beach is Wong Amat Beach. If you are looking more exotic and chilled vibe you can visit the island of Kho Larn and enjoy some of the best beaches in Thailand.
If you feel more adventurous you will find a lot of sports and water activities. A day trip to Pattaya is one the best beach day trips from Bangkok.
Ayutthaya was the ancient capital of the kingdom of Thailand and one of the places to visit nearby Bangkok. People who love culture and archeology can’t miss Ayutthaya. Ayutthaya is also one of the most popular Bangkok day tours.
How to get to Ayutthaya?
Ayutthaya can be easily reached by public transport if you are on a budget. The train is the cheapest option, as you need only 15 THB (0.41 EUR) to reach the city. It is also a good way to skip the traffic in Bangkok. On the other hand, the trains do not have air conditioning and lack some comfort. The train station is located 5-10 minutes away from central Ayatthuya by car.
Minivans are a valid alternative if you prefer to travel with a bit more comfort, I recommend choosing a time when the streets won’t be busy. The minivan stop is just 10 minutes away on foot from the center of Ayutthaya.
A taxi is a good idea for people tho have limited time and don’t mind spending something more to have comfort. A taxi from central Bangkok will cost you between 750-1500 THB (20.37- 40.75 EUR) depending on the traffic.
Several tours are departing every day from Bangkok to Ayutthaya and they will give you the chance to visit the most popular temples. If you don’t feel like planning to visit Ayutthaya, this could be a good solution for you. Check out this highly recommended tour.
What to see in Ayutthaya?
There are so many temples in Ayutthaya, so you can choose which sites you like the best. But here is a list of some of the best temples in Ayutthaya.
Wat Mahathat is probably the most popular attraction in Ayutthaya, not only for the archeological site but also for the unique Buddha’s face in the tree. This is one of the symbols and most unbelievable places in Thailand. The admission fee is 50 THB (1.36 EUR).
Wat Ratchaburana lies next to Wat Mahathat and also deserves a visit as it is a great photo spot in Ayutthaya. The crypt is truly remarkable. The admission fee is 50 THB (1.36 EUR).
Wat Chaiwatthanaram is one of the most impressive places in Ayutthaya and one of the most visited sites in central Thailand. The style of this temple takes inspiration from the famous Angkor Wat in Cambodia. The admission fee is 50 THB (1.36 EUR).
Wat Phu Khao Thong is a place that gives me mixed feelings. From one side, you see the beauty of the temple, from the other one you will see that the place needs some renovation, especially for the painting, but I still recommend paying a visit. Unlike all the other temples mentioned, there is no entrance fee.
Wat Lokaya Sutharam hosts the famous buddha laying and it is one of the most photographed and visited places in Ayutthaya.
Where to eat in Ayutthaya?
We were recommended to try Pruek Thara, because of its famous prawns. Sadly, the place was closed due to a flood that hit Ayutthaya at the time. So our choice was Malakor Kitchen and Cafe and eventually, we had one of the best meals during our trip. The prawns and pineapple fried rice cannot be missed!
Additional tips for visiting Ayutthaya?
Avoid visiting Ayutthaya during the rainy season, as your visit can be affected by unreachable streets and temples that will be closed to preserve them. We visited in mid-October and the flood situation was very bad.
If you are not going on a tour you can rent a bike to visit Ayutthaya, or maybe decide your route with a Tuk-Tuk driver. If you choose to visit Ayutthaya by taxi as we did, every single stop will cost you 100 THB (2.72 EUR). This seems to be a fixed rate between the drives and it includes waiting time.
Bring cash as most of the temples, Tuk-Tuk drivers, and restaurants don’t accept cards.
If you are looking for a unique temple in Thailand a short trip from Bangkok to Wat Samphran is a perfect choice. The Wat Samphran is one of those places that will make your jaw drop and wonder if this place is even real. The complex is quite big and there is a lot to see.
How to get to Wat Samphran?
The taxi is the best way to get to the temple as I was not able to find public transport. A ride from central Bangkok will cost you between 350-600 THB (9.51- 16.30 EUR) depending on the traffic. Also, it is better to pay extra and ask the driver to wait as it might be hard to find a ride back.
Best photo locations in Wat Samphran
I believe that this temple is very interesting for photography lovers, so where are the best photo locations in Wat Samphran?
The foot of the dragon and its gorgeous details are something that you want to capture when you visit the temple. The several Buddha statues are also another great photo idea. Getting on top will give you the chance to capture the details of the face of the dragon.
If you have a drone, this is the perfect place to use it. I also recommend a zoom lens to capture the details.
Additional tips for visiting Wat Samphran
The entrance is free, nevertheless, a donation is encouraged to maintain the temple. The temple is from 6 am to 6 pm.
Considering that this temple is off the beaten track, you won’t find big crowds here. Even considering the huge Instagram popularity. Come to Wat Samphran and enjoy one of the most unique temples in Thailand.
Further reading for the best day trips from Bangkok
Other useful tips for visiting Thailand
🏠 Need a place to stay? Browse Booking or Agoda
💃 How about fun experiences? GetYourGuide, Viator, and Klook have it all
🚗 Considering renting a car in Thailand? Use Rentalcars
🚂 If you need transfers, bus or train tickets, check 12Go
🔒 Don’t forget about travel insurance from HeyMondo
This is the end of the best day trips from Bangkok and I am sure that after reading this article, you already know where to head next. There are some amazing places to visit nearby Bangkok, so don’t miss this opportunity and extend your time in Bangkok.
I would love to hear your thoughts, so if you have any feedback or additional tips, leave a comment below. Also, check out my Instagram for regular travel videos and travel inspiration. Or explore other destinations on this travel blog.