Kanchanaburi, Thailand

Finding the Thonburi train station in Bangkok is a mission in itself (there’s two main train stations, and Thonburi is the one on the OTHER side of the river), but if you get there early enough you can catch a rickety old train to Kanchanaburi, about three hours out west towards the Myanmar border.

The provincial capital is popular with a curious mix of package tourists who come to check out the Death Railway, the ubiquitous backpacker on the banana pancake trail, and day-tripping locals trying to escape the heat of Bangkok.

The most famous landmark in town is the Bridge over the River Kwai, made famous by the movie of the same name (which by all accounts is an entirely fictional dramatisation of the events during wartime). Needless to say nothing actually happened to this particular bridge, but that doesn’t stop history buffs from making the trek out to Kanchanaburi to ride an elephant, check out the museums and make the pilgrimage to the infamous Hellfire Pass, a thoroughly depressing eye-opener to the horrors of war…

Kwai Bridge


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