We moved onward from Kanchanaburi to a city called Ayuthaya. It used to be the former capital of Siam. It is full of many beautiful temple ruins. The city is also completely surrounding by a system of rivers making it an actual island.
Taking The Bus From Kanchaniburi To Ayuthaya
We had to take two different buses to get here. The first one was about 2 hours long and went from Kanchanaburi to the city of Suphanburi. This was our first experience at taking a non air conditioned bus. It was not on a direct route, it made many stops. The first one was only two minutes down the road from the bus station. Here we sat and waited for quite a while. Jack and I looked at each other dreading that this would be the scenario for the majority of the trip. It wasn’t too bad though. It was a bus that only locals would usually take. We were the only tourists on board. It was hot, but somewhat bearable with the wind coming in from the windows.
Us sweating up a storm on the hot bus and out for dinner
So far our bus experiences as far as driving conditions has been good. The bus drivers travel in a respectable manor and the roads are in good condition. The drive was quite scenic, we passed by many farms and temples. We saw Buddhist monks getting rides down the sides of the road in tuk tuks. We had to stop frequently to pick up and let off uniformed school children.
On one of the bus stops we had some people board to try and sell food. We were extremely hungry at this point as we had missed breakfast. We bought a mango that was cut into pieces. It was very green and unripe, but that is how they eat them here. It had a small bag to dip the pieces into. It contained sugar a bit of salt and ground chillies. The whole thing together was really quite tasty.
We have to laugh each time we get on the bus. Jack is always the tallest person. He can’t fit his legs in when he sits down. The seat in front is way to close. So we always have to make sure he can sit on the outer seat to put his legs into the aisle.
The bus stopped at Suphanburi and we had a few minutes before we had to get onto our next bus. I went to go ask which bus to get while Jack stayed with the bags. I had yet another dog suddenly move from its peaceful position on the ground as I passed by. It got up and start growling and barking as I walked through the bus station. It didn’t bark at anyone else. We have experienced this many times, I guess they don’t like tourists.
I then made my way to a food vendor in the depot. We were still really hungry. We have had some difficulties keeping ourselves fed here. Being vegetarian has not helped matters. Even meat eaters come here as tourists and have said they don’t eat the meat. This vendor had the usually unidentifiable meat on skewers and nothing else for us to eat but a big square cake object. I guess that will become lunch!
The lady I originally talked to about the bus came back to track us down. She said you have two minutes. It wasn’t hard for her to keep track of us, being the only tourists in the depot. This bus ride to Ayuthaya would be about 1 1/2 hours. This bus was really old and rickety. It was not a very pleasant ride. It shook and rattled the whole way, the suspension was virtually non existent. The two buses in total cost 86 baht each (about $1.50 each) so I guess we can’t complain too much!
Chantana Guest House
After arriving in Ayutthaya we only had a short walk from the bus depot to the tourist area that has guest houses and restaurants. We checked into the Chantana Guest house. No shoes are allowed anywhere inside. The tiled floors are buffed to a high sheen and immaculately clean. Our room is simple, but spotless as well. It has a nice bathroom, air conditioning and a fan. We are getting used to the bathrooms here where the shower goes over the entire room. You just have to make sure you remove any items you don’t want to get wet before you shower. The whole thing dries quite quickly afterward.
We did find it a bit strange that the bed only had a mattress sheet on it. No other sheet or blankets were in the room. We went to the front desk and asked if they had any top sheets. We are pretty sure what we were given was two tablecloths. They are a polyester material and create great sparks when you move in the dark. They should market these for kids, they would love it. Later on we discovered a huge blue terrycloth towel. We thought it was for drying off with, it was actually supposed to be our blanket. The staff are so sweet and friendly here. We keep adding on another night because we enjoy it so much.
Another funny (well not really) thing that was talked about with other travelers is the fact of how short the door entrances can be here. Especially the bathrooms. Later that night Jack almost decapitated his own head on our bathroom door. It is quite short and he has to hunch over to get in and out of it.
Jack trying to go through one of the midget door ways, and a typical laundry day
Sick Sounding Rooster Waking Us Before The Sun Even Comes Up
We have had a pathetic sounding rooster waking us up early each morning here. He is just outside our room window. First of all I thought rooster started their call when the sun is coming up. This jerk starts well before there is any sign of the sun. He must be on his last legs, his call sounds like he is being choked by someone. We can’t help but laugh each time we hear him, even though we are mad he has woken us up.
Tony’s Place For Great Food
Our first night here we set out to find dinner, our place does not have a restaurant. We found Tony’s Place just down the street. Which has now become our second home here. We have had most of our dinners and breakfasts here. The food is very tasty. We have got or laundry done here. The staff all recognizes us now when we come. The guy that runs it is quite a character.
Be Cautious, Packs Of Stray Dogs Attacking People
A warning to travelers coming here. In the tourist restaurant/guesthouse area of Ayuthaya, be wary of packs of dogs. They are all over Thailand where we have been traveling. They seem to be especially bad in this area. When the main heat of the day is gone they are roaming all over the streets. They are attacking anyone going by on scooters or bikes. They are also doing some vicious growling as we tried to get down the street.
Wandering Around The City, We Stumble Across A Market
Our last day here we have just been taking it easy. We found some western food, pizza! It was very good. It was a much needed break from rice dishes. We wandered through an alley way market system. It was set in some skinny back roads. It was definitely not a place the tourists frequent often. It is so stimulating to walk around places like this. You see so many bizarre and different things all around you. There was all kinds of stuff for sale from underwear to squid on a stick! We tried some grilled bananas, they were quite tasty.
As you can see by the sign below, little descretion is used for anything here
The Travelers World Is A Small One
We ran into a traveler here we first met months ago back in Tanzania. We sat and chatted with him on Zanzibar island. He was basically doing our same trip but backwards from us. He was just at the end of his year. He was supposed to be going home to Leeds, England. We were in shock to see him walking down the street in front of our hotel. At first we thought we must be mistaken and refrained from approaching him, not to mention we had forgotten his name. We had nothing to call out to him. It was him. We spent another evening sitting and chatting. He went home for 3 weeks for Christmas and has been in Thailand since then. I don’t think this guy ever works!
Dairy Queen even has green tea dipped cones here
Water Is Running Down Our Guest House Walls!!!
We had a small taste of what it is like to be here during the monsoon season. We had gone to bed for the evening early. We had to get up at 7am to head to the train station. The event started out with what we thought was a large jet passing overhead. The loud noise lasted for a few minutes. It turns out it was thunder and was the start of a storm. The sky began to let out water like nothing we have ever experienced before. It couldn’t even be classified as rain.
We immediately left our room and headed straight for the front door of the guest house to get a look outside. A couple of travelers having the same idea had already beaten us there. We all stood in the doorway looking out in amazement. We returned back towards our room to see the two young ladies who manage the guest house in a great panic. They were bringing in clothes that were out drying. They were also busy grabbing towels and buckets to deal with the ceiling in the back common area of the guest house. By this time it had streams of water coming in and running down the walls.
We opened the door to our room which was right off this area. Our room and the back section were add ons to the rest of the guest house. The wall where it was attached to the rest of the building had water pouring down it. The adjacent wall had some as well. There were two spots in the ceiling that were dripping. The girls immediately came in to help us. The bed happened to be under the dripping ceiling so we moved it near one of the dry walls. Then we had to get all our stuff off the floor so it would not get wet. They dried up the water on the floor as best as they could. Then we placed towels all along the bottom of the walls that were streaming with water to help soak it up. That was the best we could do since there were no other rooms to transfer us to.
We tried to settle back into bed since we had to be up in less than 6 hours. We lied there looking at the ceiling wondering if it would cave in on us from all the weight of the water on it. The intensity of the rain was not stopping. Soon our tiredness out weighed the worry and we finally went to sleep. The rain had let up at some point in the night and the room was not as bad as we had expected when we got up.
The Train From Ayutthaya Back To Bangkok
We took a 45 minute train ride from Ayutthaya back to Bangkok. The train route has a stop right at the airport, so it is very convenient. We had to get the person at the ticket booth to repeat the price for our tickets. We were in complete disbelief and thought we had misheard him the first time. It was 11 baht each for our tickets. That is less than 30cents! Needless to say you can get around Thailand extremely cheap.
The train was full of local people. Some were obviously going long distances. They had brought baskets with them full of everything they might need on the trip. One lady was pulling out stuff from her basket, to our amazement she had a whole meal in there. She had some meat and rice in a bowl, then she added some green onion. She pulled out a little plastic bag with chili sauce in it and continued to stir that into the mixture. After eating she pulled out a small pillow to have a nap with. I sat beside a cute little man who I swear was a hundred years old. I can assure you with out a doubt I probably weighed almost 3 times what he did. I was also considerably taller.