Bangkok is the main doorway to Thailand, home of everything from business center to banging nightlife. But only 3 hours (180 minutes) from this city, there are many charming attractions and activities that completely different from glassy skyscrapers and busy streets.
HotelThailand.com will take you to some of the best excursion just outside the city. See below, and find out the highlight attractions close to Bangkok, and all of them is within 3 hours away.
Ancient City of Ayutthaya Distance: 80 KMs (1 h 20 min)
Located some 70 kilometres upstream from Bangkok, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya
(or Ayutthaya for short) is a famous tourist stop and an obligatory destination for travellers who love to catch the history of Thailand. Here you will have a great chance to explore the ruin of Siamese ancient capital, which once was the most lavish city of the Chao Phraya Basin (Central Thailand).
There are many magnificent ruins of temples, palaces and crumbling fortresses to visit – such as Wat Panan Choeng, Wat Si San Phet, Wat Mahathat, Wat Ratchaburana, Phu Khao Thong. You can also take an elephant ride to explore the ancient Royal Grand Palace complex of Ayutthaya.
You can take either Train from Bangkok Station or Route Bus from Mo Chit 2 Bus Terminal, which will take only around 1.20 – 2.00 hours. There, you can hire a Tuk Tuk or rent a bicycle to explore the complex. Optionally, there are tour depart from Bangkok and a river cruise that will take you from Bangkok up to Ayutthaya daily.
Death Railway, Kanchanaburi
Distance: 140 KMs (2 h 20 min) The Death railway
is 415 kilometers long railroad that connect Thailand to Thanbyuzayat in Myanmar, as a part of Japanese Empire's campaign during World War 2. The railway pass through the valley of River Kwai, which was known for dense forest, fever, and hash condition, estimated to claim the lives of more than 16,000 war prisoners and 49,000 laborers during the construction.
This infamous Death Railway is not only full of story of war from the past, but also delightful landscape waiting for every traveler to enjoy. Take a visit to River Kwai Bridge
to see the iconic steel bridge that span across the river, remember the history of the was at Kanchanaburi War Cemetery
and visit the famous Tham Krasae Bridge
, wooden bridge build along the sheer cliff by the river, which will give you an exceptional view.
From Bangkok, you can take a train from Bangkok Station or route bus from Southern Bus Terminal will take you around 2.30 hours to reach the downtown of Kanchanaburi. Also, there is one day join tour from Bangkok you can take part.
Ancient Siam (Mueang Boran), Samut Prakan Distance: 34 KMs (40 min)
If you want to discover all Thailand without spending a fortune, Ancient Siam or Mueang Boran is the place to go. It is the place where you can see everything in Thailand (literally) in just 1 day. There are many beautiful buildings and famous attractions from all part of Thailand set in natural environment. This is not a "miniature town" but all built in full size and detail.
From downtown Bangkok, you can easily reach Ancient Siam with BTS Sky Train to Bearing Station then take a taxi for about 15 kms. It is recommended to combine a trip to the country biggest Samut Prakan Crocodile Farm
which is not far away. Instead, you can opt to join 1-day tour that will take you to both Ancient Siam and the Crocodile Farm.
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, Ratchaburi
Distance: 100 KM (1.45 h) Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
is a fun activity for those who are interested in shopping for souvenirs and experience authentic Thai way of life. It is around 1.3 - 2hrs away from Bangkok by private car. There are hundreds of boats and riverside stalls with Thai food, fresh fruit, vegetables and other goodies for purchase. You can take a boat ride among the seller boat at the market then go on a trip to explore the small canal near to the market seeing the live of the local along the waterway.
There is not any bus run directly from downtown Bangkok to Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
, so many tourist hire a taxi which can cost you as much as 1000 baht. This is yet to include the entrance fee, the boat ride fee and so on. It may be a better idea to join day tour with local guide from Bangkok.
Koh Kred Island, Nonthaburi Distance: 20 KMs (40 min)
You may surprise to find a glimpse of Thai rural life just under 1 hour from downtown Bangkok. This Koh Kred Island
is just 20 KMs north of the city, so close that you can consider it as a part of the city itself. This is a man-made island result from the construction of a shortcut through a bend of Chao Phraya River 300 years ago, making it an isolate land which still has no road or shopping mall even today!
Koh Kred is long known for good quality earthenware with lavish design. You will find a number of ceramic shops and kilns around the island, but most of the shop is at the northern corner of the island, just opposite to the ferry pier. It is recommended renting a bike or walking along the walkway that circled the island. There are old temples for you to visit, as well as a great chance to explore the life of the local.
From Bangkok Victory Monument, you can take 166 buses to Pakred, hop on a motorbike taxi to ferry pier (2 minutes away), and then get on a ferryboat that will take you to the island. You can also join a tour from Bangkok with tour guide to help you understand the tradition and life of the local clearer.
Coral Island (Koh Larn), Pattaya
Distance: 151 KMs (2 h 10 min)
Pattaya is a popular destination locates just around 2 hour from Bangkok, known for bustling city and great places to hang out. Lies just 40 mins off the shore is Coral Island or Koh Larn
offering more beautiful beach and more relax atmosphere comparing to the city.
You can take a ferryboat from Bali Hai Pier (South Pattaya) which will take you directly to 2 piers on the island "Na Ban Pier" and " Ta Waen Pier". From both piers, you can rent motorbike for an excursion around the island and to go to other beaches. There are many white powdery beaches and clear azure for you to enjoy. Ta Waen Beach and Samae Beach are the most favorable stops, with long nice beach and abundance water activities.
From Bangkok, you can take van or route bus from Ekkamai Terminal (BTS Ekkamai Station) which run direct to Pattaya. Also, you can join in day tour which will take you to this mesmerizing island. Photo from: Shutterstock.com - Maewjpho, BonnieBC, Sanit Fuangnakhon, Chirasak Tolertmongkol, Pichugin Dmitry, MJ Prototype, Bule Sky Studio, Phrompas, Praisaeng ,mthai.com, amazing-thailand.com