After booking my ticket to Jakarta I had some more days left in Thailand and started my research what to do close to Bangkok. Except from Ayutthaya there were some more interesting places to go and quite spontaneously I headed to Mo Chit Bus Terminal to take a Minivan to Kanchanaburi for a two days trip. The buses leave almost every hour in both directions. You can also take the train to Kanchanaburi. The price is quite the same but there are only two train connections per day between Bangkok and Kanchanaburi.
After 2,5 hours drive I arrived in the small city in central Thailand. I’ve never been in this area before but I liked it right away.
Along the river
As the distances in the city are not too far I rent a bicycle and just followed the road next to the river to discover the area. There are some nice temples along this way and while passing the river you will see plenty of floating restaurants.
The people here are friendly and open-minded so that I felt absolutely welcomed right away.
The Kwai River Bridge
The Kwai River Bridge is quite busy all the time but especially when a train is about to pass it is absolutely crowded with tourist. The bridge is located at the west end of the city and accessible for pedestrians only. You can walk on the rails along the bridge, take pictures and stand right next to the passing train on small platforms. The train passes only a few times a day so check with the locals there to not miss it.
The Death Railway and Krasae Cave
For 100 Baht one way you can join the train to get either in the direction of Bangkok or – which is more worth to see – the direction ‚Nam Tok‘. At the final destination you can reach the Say Yok Nam waterfall after 1 km trekking. I’ve chosen to get of the train at ‚Thakrasae Bridge‘ Station to walk along the famous ‚Death Railway‘ district and to see the Krasae Cave right next to the station.
Already passing the Thakrasae Bridge is an adventure and unique moment itself. The trails are constructed in the middle of nowhere and leading right along the mountain shape. Within seconds you will see plenty of heads and cameras looking out of the windows to catch the perfect picture of this short moment. The view at this point is breathtaking and definitely worth a visit. Wandering on the trails is a majestic and gloomy feeling at the same time. While siting on the trails far away from the crowd for a few minutes makes the history and tragedy of this place noticeable.
After 1:10 hours the train stops again for the way back to Kanchanaburi. On the way back you will buy the ticket in the train as there is no ticket counter at the stations.
The Giant Tree
As the name already says: it’s a giant tree! Located in a beautiful landscape only 23 km away from Kanchanaburi City it is easy to reach by scooter. There is no entrance fee and you can stay as long as you want under the huge arms of this impressive tree.
There is definitely much more to see in Kanchanaburi. Several museums and monuments referred to the II World War and the associated events are located in the city centre or close by. Furthermore there are some beautiful waterfalls to visit. The Sai Yok Yai Waterfall is accessible by taking the train to the final destination Nam Tok. Around 1 km walk will lead to the waterfall there.