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The road to Sukhothai


The road to Sukhothai started at an early morning in Thoen. I had breakfast and left on the 1048, a small road with almost no traffic. It would eventually lead me to Sukhothai but it was more challenging than I anticipated.

The slow swindling road just 10 km out of Thoen

The slow swindling road to Sukhothai just 10 km out of Thoen

The first few kilometers were flat with here and there a short though steep climb of 100-200 meters. I saw the hills coming closer and knew soon I would have to climb.

I turned out to be a comfortable 5 km climb to almost 500 meter altitude. It was never steep, nor difficult.

At the top, I rested a bit and expected to go back into the lowlands. Although that would be true, it wouldn't be a next 90 km to Sukhothai.

The road was almost empty. Soon I was back in the agricultural areas with a few villages on the road. The real problem was continuing short climbs, never steep, never difficult but I never got any rest.

I had not seen any road markers for Sukhothai but around this time I started seeing them. It was still quite far. Si Satchanalai was another option but I decided I would skip that, both national park and Old Si Satchanalai ruins. I had been there before even though it had been 20 years ago.

Just before the climb starts at the junction to Wang Chin
Just before the climb starts at the junction to Wang Chin

Here and there I started seeing ancient stupas on hill tops. The Sukhothai kingdom must have been very big.

The road to Sukhothai
The road to Sukhothai had many hills, never steep, never high
but it never stopped rolling.

In Thung Saliam I took a break to have a meal and enjoy the returning green padi fields. When I got back on the bike I still had to cycle about 50 km. It was time for a shortcut.

Entering Sukhothai province
Entering Sukhothai province

But as any cyclist knows a shortcut it not necessarily shorter too. This short cut I took was certainly not shorter but very nice. The reason I took the shortcut was a sign to Old Sukhothai. The road got slightly busier too, and this road looked quiet plus, I wouldn't have to cross the hills in front of me.

Ancient stupas on the road to Sukhothai
Ancient stupas on the road to Sukhothai

Exotissimo: Individually customized & unforgettable travel experiences in ThailandSo I went on this road that went south following the hills. The road wasn't on my map but I expected it would go anyway further south crossing a larger road, hopefully the one that would lead directly to Sukhothai.

After a few kilometers the small road lead me away from the hills, back west.

Fortunately a little further it went again south through rural Thailand. It was beautiful cycling here, just the kind of roads you would love to have as a cyclist and with tailwind it went all quite easy, despite I felt I needed food.

In the villages I past, I could the surprise of the people. After several kilometers I came back at an ongoing road: #113. Sukhothai was near.

At one point I asked if I was still at the right route and I got a drink and an extensive explanation how to go (all the way straight ahead).

On the road to Sukhothai, still 11 km to go
On the road to Sukhothai, still 35 km to go

I decided not to go to the new city Sukhothai but continue to the old city. Although I had been in Sukhothai 20 years earlier, I had little memory where I stayed at the time. As far as I remembered, it was the new city and I didn't know if the old city had hotels or guesthouses. It turned out to be just fine.

Sukhothai National Park
Sukhothai historical park

Just opposite of Sukhothai National Park, I found a guesthouse with a clean comfortable and cheap room. All I had to do now was having a shower, a cup of coffee and dinner before the next day I would go out and explore Sukhothai UNESCO World Heritage City.

On the way to get dinner in Sukhothai
On the way to get dinner in Sukhothai

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