Most of new Sukhothai's backpacker-friendly accommodation, restaurants, bars and so on are just over the Phra Ruang Bridge on the west side of the Yom River. Once you get to this area, everything is a short walk, including the small night markets to the east of the river. Due to competition, Sukhothai's accommodation scene is truly a buyers' market — expect better value than is typically found in many other parts of the country.
A couple hundred metres past TR Guesthouse and down another sleepy lane, Hang Jeng occupies an old house and is one of Sukhothai's more unique and inviting budget options. All 15 rooms come with air-con, although the laid-back staff offered to shut it off and take 200 baht off the price if you just want to use the ceiling fans. Each room is a little different, but all of them reminded us a little... Read our full review of Hang Jeng Guesthouse.
If looking to treat yourself, look no further than Lotus Village just north of the day market and Wat Sathani on the east side of the river. Several different size rooms are available, but all feature classy Thai-style furnishings with deep brown polished wood floors that are a joy to walk on with bare feet. Beds are soft, comfy and covered in sumptuous linens. Thai art is tastefully hung from... Read our full review of Lotus Village.
TR has become new Sukhothai's top choice for budget travellers, and rightfully so. Set in a solid location down a quiet riverside soi but near the town centre and songthaew pick-up point to the historical park, TR offers some of the best value in Sukhothai's highly competitive guesthouse market. In the main building up front, you can settle into a spacious and clean double or single room with... Read our full review of TR Guesthouse.
Tucked in spacious and quiet grounds between the bus station and river, Phuaroon has some of the most comfortable rooms in new Sukhothai, and at excellent value to boot. All rooms come with TVs, lots of windows, air-con and fans, firm but comfortable beds with classic roofed frames and clean hot water bathrooms. The 400 baht offerings are new hardwood bungalows with tasteful Thai wood carvings,... Read our full review of Phuaroon Resort.
4T Guesthouse (not to be confused with nearby No. 4 Guesthouse) doesn't seem to have changed much after moving into the space previously occupied by J&J. Basic is the key word here — all rooms come with plain tile floors, white walls and firm beds to go with similarly basic hot water bathrooms. They're spacious, however, and most come with loungable front porches. On the downside, these rooms... Read our full review of 4T Guesthouse.
This very long-running guesthouse is often full and has received loads of positive reviews over the years, but it seems to have been surpassed by other spots with better value, including Hang Jeng and TR, both of which are right around the corner. The only rooms that were open when we visited were the tiny and basic double fan options with shared bathrooms, and at 250 baht, TR raises the stakes... Read our full review of Banthai Guesthouse.
Set in a central location on the same soi as TR guesthouse, Garden House has 15 rustic but inviting bungalows out back in a leafy garden setting. While they're not huge, the bungalows sport thatched bamboo walls, hardwood floors and relatively soft beds with mosquitio nets. Bathrooms are small and a tad grimy, but all come with hot water showers. The selling point of the bungalows are the lovely... Read our full review of Garden House.
Around 400 metres towards the bus station from 4T Guesthouse, at the end of a narrow and quiet street, No 4's basic but atmospheric bamboo huts with cold water semi-open-air showers and firm beds leave you wondering whether Colonel Kurtz is lurking somewhere around here. The bungalows reminded us of slightly above average beachside huts down in the islands; plenty of cracks ensure that a few... Read our full review of No 4 Guesthouse.
From the front, Pai presents itself more as a restaurant, but they boast a fairly elaborate resort out back that includes a small but stylish swimming pool area. All rooms come with air-con, and all are modern and exceptionally clean. Medium size standards are in a two-storey hotel style building and these have comfortable beds and shiny white tile floors, but bathrooms are shared, making these... Read our full review of Pai Restaurant & Resort.
Now fully settled into its new riverside location a short walk from the old spot (now occupied by 4T Guesthouse), Belgian owned J&J offers a handful of rustic but comfortable wood bungalows with attached hot water bathrooms set around a small lawn. Rooms come with fan or air-con, and although they're not huge, we found the beds to be firm but comfortable and there are some nice touches like stone... Read our full review of J&J Guesthouse.
A good 10 minutes' walk from the river on the east side of town, Sukhothai Guesthouse doesn't offer the greatest rooms or the best value in town, and the location could be better. Yet, the owners consistently make up for all of this with their genuinely wonderful hospitality. Rooms are set in a small but pleasant area with loads of tropical plants. Some come with air-con and others with fans,... Read our full review of Sukhothai Guesthouse.
The area directly east of the historical park's main gates has seen a steady rise of tourist-oriented restaurants and places to stay in recent years. We still favour the more extensive food scene of new Sukhothai, but there are a couple of budget guesthouses very close to the ruins and a handful of more flash spots down a quiet side road less than one kilometre to the west. With a few more resorts being built in this area, it appears there will be more to choose from in coming years, and we wouldn't be surprised if a full-scale town materalises within the next few decades.
The oldest guesthouse in old Sukhothai (in more ways than one), Old City has a few buildings with different types of rooms a short walk away from the historical park gates. Dirt cheap fan rooms occupy a 350-year-old Thai wood house that at first glance looks as though it could have been preserved simply to add to the ambience. At 150 baht, these rooms offer nothing more than a bed, fan and window... Read our full review of Old City Guesthouse.
Just two years old, Thai Thai is set down a lovely and quiet road about a kilometre from the historical park gates. Everything is brand new here, and the cheapest rooms in a two-storey building towards the back of the leafy grounds filled with flowers are large and modern with comfortable beds, fridges, TVs, desks, spacious hot water bathrooms with tasteful ceramic bowl sinks and stencilled... Read our full review of Thai Thai Guesthouse.
Right next to Thai Thai Guesthouse, Orchid Hibiscus was among the first guesthouse/resorts to open in this area, and the fact that it was completely full of holidaying Europeans when we visited is a testament to its reputation for quality and hospitality. Even more so than Thai Thai, Orchid Hibiscus is definitely a small resort — not a guesthouse despite its name. The colourful grounds feature... Read our full review of Orchid Hibiscus Guesthouse.
Vitoon is a decent choice if wanting to wake up as close as possible to the historical park, although Old City Guesthouse is just a tad further down the road and offers slightly better accommodation. All of Vitoon's rooms are totally lacking in character — think white walls, white tile floors, basic firm beds and cheap furnishings. Some rooms get more light than others, and those towards the... Read our full review of Vitoon Guesthouse.
With its stunning UNESCO-listed ruins steeped in Khmer-Thai history, central Thailand's Sukhothai is a must for historically and spiritually inclined travellers. The area is split into two distinct districts: old Sukhothai, which is home to the historical park, and the inviting if not charming riverside city of new Sukhothai some 12 kilometres east of the ruins. Great places to stay can be found... Read our full review of Where to stay in Sukhothai?.