Al doped ZnO (AZO) thin films were prepared on ZnO coated glass substrates by hydrothermal synthesis technique using aqueous solutions containing zinc nitrate hexahydrate, ammonium hydroxide, and different sodium citrate concentrations at 60°C for 6 h. The effects of different trisodium citrate concentrations on the microstructural, crystallinity, morphological, optical, and chemical properties of thin films were investigated. X-ray diffraction studies showed that the AZO thin films were grown as a polycrystalline wurtzite hexagonal phase with a c-axis preferred orientation and without an unwanted second phase regardless of trisodium citrate concentrations. The thickness and grain sizes of AZO thin films decreased with increasing trisodium citrate concentration. The microstructure of AZO thin films was changed from flat to needle shaped and the morphology was smoother with increasing trisodium citrate concentrations. The AZO thin films have a high transmittance in the visible region ranging from 75 to 85% and a sharp edge from 366 to 374 nm.