Kanchanaburi is often described as a nice day trip from Bangkok to see the famous Bridge over the Kwai 1 River. But for many travelers, Kanchanaburi is a destination worthy of days, or even weeks.
- Kanchanaburi has outstanding adventure travel including white water rafting and jungle trekking.
- A dozen or more world class golf courses make Kanchanaburi an outstanding sporting holiday. Many of Kanchanaburi's golf courses are associated with fine resorts.
- The area has an infamous history depicted by the death railway museums (coming) and punctuated by the Chung Kai Cemetery on the bank of the Kwae Noi River. All are worth a few hours of reflection.
Sangklaburi is just as rich in natural beauty as in ethnic diversity. Several ethnic minorities live in the mountains along the border of Myanmar (Burma). The area has trekking, outstanding sight-seeing, white-water rafting and the opportunity to shop in the Myanmar border town of Pyathonzu. .. more about Sangklaburi (coming)
Death Railway, Hellfire Pass & River Kwai Bridge
A significant part of Japanese strategy during World War II concerned easier access into Burma. Building the Death Railway and the River Kwai bridge made it easier to support their military in Burma.
JEATH stands for Japan, England, America, Australia, Thailand and Holland. Those were the nationalities of the prisoners of war (POW's) forced by the Japanese to slave on the famous Bridge over the Kwai River. The museum illustrates the deplorable conditions under which the men were required to work. Three museums in Kanchanaburi are the JEATH Museum, the Hellfire Pass Museum is a sobering "must see".
Getting to Kanchanaburi
How long you plan to spend in Kanchanaburi and where you plan to visit may determine your choice of transportation. Many of the attractions around Kanchanaburi are spread out a bit as well .. getting to Kanchanaburi
Kwai vs. Kwae
"Kwae" is a nearer transliteration of the Thai Name for the Kwae Yai River. We use "Kwai" on this site because it is normally what travelers recognize. Kwai is the transliteration for water buffalo. Kwae is pronounced similarly to "Quay"
The name of the river over which the bridge was constructed was the " Klong". The prison camp was on the banks of the Kwae Noi (small). The Maenam Klong was later renamed as the Maenam Kwae Yai (big).