in november, we (5 people) would like to take a train from
1. Bangkok - Ayutthaya
2. Ayutthaya - Phitsanuloke
3. Phitsanuloke - Chiang Mai.
Is there a possibility to buy train tickets in advance through the internet?
Any recommandations very welcome - thanks a lot
#1 Greatdixter has been a member since 20/9/2011. Posts: 1
the article is a bit long in the tooth now, but there are a few tips here:
looking at the segments you have planned, i don't think you'll necessarily need to purchase tickets in advance. you certainly won't need advance seats for BKK-ayutthaya and the ayutthaya to p-lok segments. just walk up to the train station and buy your seat or perhaps use a travel agent once you arrive.
the p-lok to chiang mai is a longer segment, but given the timing of the overnight sleeper trains, i suspect you'll be much better off just taking a day train if available for that segment. there should be a 2nd class diesel rail car with decent enough times.
are you visiting phitsanulok specifically or perhaps using that as a hub to visit sukhothai and surrounds. i ask because if you are going to sukhothai, i think you'd be better off just heading straight from there to chiang mai by bus rather than retreating to phitsanulok to catch a train. good luck.
We travelled on trains in Thailand earlier this year and were glad that we booked ahead using the info on website 'seat61.com'
Our train to Vientianne was fully booked and we met people in our hotel who couldn't get a train there for 2 days, likewise the trains to Chaing Mai. You may well find that your destinations will be OK, but as it is so easy to book online we didn't want to chance it, although you can only do this a month in advance.
Hope this helps?
By train, the Phitsanulok-Chiang Mai leg takes about 7 hours. Check the trains schedules here to see if they fit with your plans.
The other option is to take a bus to CM. Should take about 6-7 hours.
Just to add to Exacto's info regarding Phitsanulok, Sukhothai and surrounds ... if you are thinking of exploring Sukhothai and Si Satchanalai (highly recommended), it is possible to get back onto the main rail line without returning to Phitsanulok, which would be time-consuming and inconvenient.
The main town nearest to Si Satchanalai is Sawankhalok. Sawankhalok has a very nice little train station that services a single line that runs, exclusively, between Sawankhalok and Uttaradit. It was built by King Rama VI just so he could visit the ruins at Si Satchanalai. There are regular trains back and forth between the two places.
Even though Sawankhalok is a charming little spot that is worthy of a night, it is possible to see Si Satchanalai then get back to Sawankhalok and onto the train to Uttaradit in time to get catch the train to Chiangmai (about 5 hours from Uttaradit).