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Kanchanaburi Tour

A 4-day exploration of some of the varied and fascinating sites of Thailand's historic Kanchanaburi Province

The 'Death Railway', River Kwai and Three Pagodas Pass

This 4-day Kanchanaburi tour, starting and finishing in the Thai capital Bangkok includes visits to the famous Maeklong ‘Railway Market’, the – even more famous – Bridge on the River Kwai itself and travel by local train along the route of the infamous ‘Death Railway’. (So named as it was constructed by the Japanese Imperial Army during the Second World War employing Allied prisoners of war and conscripted Asian labourers.) Beginning with a visit to picturesque Erawan National Park and an overnight stay in Sai Yok on floating raft houses on the River Kwai itself, we’ll continue to remote Sangkhlaburi Village on the banks of scenic Khao Laem Lake, close to the Burmese (Myanmar) border crossing at Three Pagodas Pass.

After visits to local markets, a boat tour on the lake, a jungle hike and bamboo rafting trip, we’ll return to Sai Yok district to complete our tour with a kayaking trip down the River Kwai, a return train ride to Kanchanaburi and on to Bangkok. (Note the tour can either finish at any centrally located downtown Bangkok hotel or, for a small supplement, we can drop you directly at the International Airport.) Extra accommodation in the Thai capital, prior to and after your Kanchanaburi tour is, of course, available on request.

Note that this Kanchanaburi and western Thailand itinerary features on our South Thailand, Mountains and Rainforests tour as well as both of our Thailand family tours. However, time restraints mean we can’t include it in all of our tours of the kingdom so, for those with a few extra days to spare, this mini-tour makes an ideal add-on to complement any other trips starting or finishing in the Thai capital.

Prices indicated are based on 2 people sharing (twin or double accommodation) while discounts are available for larger groups or families.



Here's an idea of what you can expect to do and see day-to-day.

Mae Klong Railway Market

Day 1 - Kanchanaburi - depart Bangkok for Sai Yok National Park

Departure from your hotel in Bangkok for the town of Kanchanaburi, lying two hours to the west, with a stop on the way to visit the famous Mae Khlong Railway Market. Afternoon visit to the picturesque waterfalls of Erawan National Park before continuing to another National Park, Sai Yok, for our overnight accommodation on floating raft houses.

Overnight: Sai Yok Transport: Minibus, Walk,  Meals: L, D, 

Thailand, Sangkhlaburi

Day 2 - Sangkhlaburi - Khao Laem lake and Three Pagodas Pass

In the morning we’ll continue west to the small but bustling market town of Thong Pha Pum for a visit to the local market and a clifftop pagoda. Continuing around picturesque Khao Laem Lake, we’ll head up to the remote border town of Sangkhlaburi where the Three Pagodas Pass, Thailand’s longest wooden bridge and Kroeng Krawia Waterfall are some of the items on our menu.

Overnight: Sangkhlaburi Transport: Minibus, Walk,  Meals: B, L, D, 

Thailand, Kanchanaburi waterfall

Day 3 - Sangkhlaburi - bamboo rafting and a return to Sai Yok

Morning boat tour around Khao Laem Lake including a visit to a temple that was partly submerged after dam construction. Return to Sangkhlaburi for lunch while the afternoon includes a visit to some hot springs and bamboo rafting on the Kwai Yai River. Return to Sai Yok for an overnight stay At Tree Tara Resort.

Overnight: Sai Yok Transport: Minibus, Boat, Walk,  Meals: B, L, D, 

Thailand, kayaking on the River Kwai

Day 4 - Kanchanaburi - the River Kwai, train journey, and return to Bangkok

A morning visit to Sai Yok Noi Waterfall and Krasae Cave followed by a 2-hour ride on the infamous ‘Death Railway’. The last stretch of the scenic, jungle-lined river to the famous Bridge on the River Kwai itself is completed by kayak. (2 person canoes are available for the uninitiated). A return drive to Bangkok completes the tour.

Extra nights accommodation in Bangkok before or after this extension are available if required

Overnight: Departure Transport: Minibus, Train, Boat,  Meals: B, L, 

Print Itinerary


The nitty-gritty, the things you need to know, the answers to your burning questions.

Thailand, Kanchanaburi train ride

Just a few of the many highlights

An exciting discovery of some of the highly varied and fascinating sites of Kanchanaburi Province lying just to the west of the Thai capital Bangkok

  • The unique Mae Khlong 'railway market'
  • Erawan and Sai Yok National Parks
  • Discover the remote and picturesque lakeside village of Sangkhlaburi
  • Stay on floating raft houses on the River Kwai
  • Canoe trip down the scenic River Kwai
  • Wonderful regional food and plenty of friendly locals

We choose our hotels based on a combination of location, comfort and convenience. Here is a *selection of the types of hotel/rooms you can expect to stay at on this tour...

South Thailand tour

Khaothone River View Resort view

  • Low-key, friendly resort on the banks of the River Kwai
  • Floating wooden raft-houses
  • Located in Sai Yok district close to the national park
Thailand, Sangkhlaburi, P Guesthouse

P Guesthouse Sangkhlaburi view

  • Wonderful location overlooking picturesque Khao Laem Lake
  • Short walk to Sangkhlaburi Village
  • Well stocked lakeside bar and tasty restaurant
Tree Tara Resort

Tree Tara Resort view

  • Set in a lush garden on the banks of the River Kwai
  • Great pool and decking areas overlooking the river
  • Comfortable, tastefully designed rooms

*This list should be considered a guide only, hotels/rooms may change (without notice) depending on availability.

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