How to Get From Bangkok to Surin by Train
It’s a little more complicated traveling by train from Bangkok these days as the old Hua Lamphong has mostly closed down. Instead, trains run from the brand new Krung Thep Aphiwat Central Terminal, which is also known as Bang Sue Central Station.
It’s a massive train station that’s the biggest in South East Asia.
The station is connected to the underground MRT system, so just hop on the MRT from wherever you are in Bangkok and get off at Bang Sue. The most centrally located MRT station is Sukhumvit. This connects to the BTS skytrain system at Asoke station.
It’s confusing enough that the new station has two names and that the MRT station is the same as one of those names. But when you get to the station, the signage it woefully inadequate.
Take a look at the signs above and let me know where you thin platforms 1 & 2 are. See that arrow pointing to the right? Well, it’s the opposite way to that. Or maybe those are exit numbers and not platform numbers. Who knows?
Looks like we found platform 1. Oh, hang one. This isn’t where you get on. To get on the train you need to head to the opposite end of the station. Confused? I was.
Nope, that’s not the entrance either. We had to ask the woman at the bus information counter and then another employee further on. It’s very confusing the first time you use the station.
Hurray, we finally found the waiting area. I’m glad we arrived early or we would probably have missed the train. If you’re traveling from this station for the first time, I suggest you arrive at least 30 minutes early.
Once you’re at the seating area, everything is very well organized. You need to remain seated at the ground floor until the train is ready.
Once it’s ready, the gates are opened and you can go up to the train, which leaves from the first floor. Tickets are checked before you go up and again on the train. There is an escalator and lifts.
Our train was to Ubon Ratchathani. Surin is around 150 km before Ubon. There are guards to help you onto the train and point out where your seats are. Large luggage is usually store next to the doors on the carriages. These doors remain closed for the whole journey.
The train is fairly old but comfortable. This is a carriage with aircon. The cost of a ticket is 387 baht (around $11). The aircon on Thai trains is usually very cold, so I’d advise you to bring a jacket. I forgot mine. Big mistake. Sometimes they hand out blankets, but they didn’t on this journey.
Along the way, lots of food and drink sellers get on the train. It’s typically Thai food that was quite cheap. You won’t hear these sellers speaking any English, so you may need to guess what the food is.
There’s always something interesting and weird going on with Thai train journeys. This time there was this stuffed toy hanging in our carriage. Don’t ask me why. I have no idea.
Our train left Bang Sue Central Station at 10:35 and arrived in Surin at around 17:15. It’s a fairly long journey, especially when you forget to wear a jacket and have to shiver for the last few hours.
When heading back to Bangkok, we usually get the 07:49 train that arrives in Bangkok at 14:30. The train is no. 72.
Where to stay in Surin
When we visit Surin, we always stay at Surin Majestic Hotel. It’s got the best aircon of any hotel I’ve ever stayed at.