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Bangkok Hua Lamphong Railway Station
The steam train trip to Ayutthaya (with tour there) will leave promptly at 8:10AM (be there by 7:30AM so you don't miss the train) on Tuesday, 26th March 2019. The train will arrive at Ayutthaya at 10:15AM. Information about lunch will be posted in the comments here soon. For the return trip, the steam train leaves Ayutthaya at 4:40PM and arrives back at Hua Lamphong at 6:45PM. GETTING THERE Take the MRT subway (it opens at 6:00AM) to the last station, Hua Lamphong MRT Station. Use **Exit 2** to enter an underground passageway that connects to the Hua Lamphong Railway Station. Check in with Organizer, Mr. Art, on Steam Train #901 to Ayutthaya. He will be Car 5, Seat 64. Train leaves at 8:10AM. COSTS The train goes from Bangkok to Ayutthaya. Tickets are 250 Baht for just the return trip (round trip) or 1,250 Baht for the train plus a tour as well. ** The tour price includes the cost of lunch. ** Tickets are available now at every Thai SRT railway station (as long as the supply lasts). All stations have access to all seats from the central computer. Buy your ticket **SOON** because the steam train runs only 4 times per year (to 3 different cities) and tickets always sell out quickly. Call 1690 for more information or ask here. I recommend asking here! BUYING YOUR TICKET To be in our train car, ask for ticket for: - March 26 - Train 901 (Steam Train) - Car 5 - - - > if full, try Car 4 or Car 6 (to be near the rest of us) - A seat near Seat 64 (Organizer Mr. Art's seat, where you check in) - 250 baht for round trip (return trip) train ticket - Ayutthaya Tour 1,000 baht (optional) You will be sold a 3-part ticket: - Bangkok to Ayutthaya - 250 baht - Ayutthaya to Bangkok - 0 baht - Tour - 1,000 baht (optional) Buy your ticket **SOON** because the steam train runs only 4 times per year and tickets always sell out quickly. OPTIONAL TOUR OF AYUTTHAYA At the railway station, you can buy a State Railways of Thailand (SRT) tour of Ayutthaya at the same time as when you buy your railway ticket. The tour ticket (1,000 baht) will be attached to your rail ticket. This tour is much more reasonably priced than Ayutthaya tours from other tour operators. At the lower price, the tour is in Thai language. However, there is a good possibility that we can ask questions in English. In fact, some of the articles over several years (such as those of the expert travel blogger, Richard Barrow) don't even mention the language of this tour. Before March 26, I will send you an email (in English) with details on the Ayutthaya "sights" we will be seeing. I am awaiting the availability of the Thai language tour brochure. Art, Event Organizer ********************************* BACKGROUND ON AYUTTHAYA The Historic City of Ayutthaya, founded in 1350, was the second capital of the Siamese Kingdom. It flourished from the 14th to the 18th centuries, during which time it grew to be one of the world’s largest and most cosmopolitan urban areas and a center of global diplomacy and commerce. Ayutthaya was strategically located on an island surrounded by three rivers connecting the city to the sea. This site was chosen because it was located above the tidal bore of the Gulf of Siam as it existed at that time, thus preventing attack of the city by the sea-going warships of other nations. The location also helped to protect the city from seasonal flooding. The city was attacked and razed by the Burmese army in 1767 who burned the city to the ground and forced the inhabitants to abandon the city. The city was never rebuilt in the same location and remains known today as an extensive archaeological site. Once an important center of global diplomacy and commerce, Ayutthaya is now an archaeological ruin, characterized by the remains of tall prang (reliquary towers) and Buddhist monasteries of monumental proportions, which give an idea of the city’s past size and the splendor of its architecture.