The city of Kanchanaburi was built under the reign of Thailand's Rama I to be used as a defense post on the Thailand-Myanmar border. During the 1942-43 Japanese occupation of Thailand in World War II, Kanchanaburi was a center for prisoner of war camps. Many POWs were used as forced labor for the notorious "Death Railway," and thousands died because of brutal conditions in the camps.
Sights in Kanchanaburi City
Kanchanburi, the capital of the province, is an excellent place to learn more about the Japanese occupation of Thailand during WWII. Visit the Allied War Cemetery, Jeath War Museum, Thailand-Burma Railway Center or the World War II Museum. See the famous Death Railway Bridge built under the Japanese.
Activities in Kanchanaburi Province
Outside the city, there are numerous outdoor activities. Erawan National Park is famous for its seven-tier waterfall, while Sai Yok National Park boasts the province's most reachable wilderness.
The cheapest way to get around within Kanchanaburi province is by bus. Tourists can ride the Death Railway, now a commuter train, for 100 Baht ($3) to any destination. Within river towns and cities, it's often fastest and cheapest to travel by boat. You can also go by motorcycle taxi or rent your own motorcycle for greater freedom.
From the main bus station at the southern end of Kanchanaburi city, buses regularly depart for Bangkok (three hours), Nakhon Pathom (two hours), and Sangkhlaburi (five hours). Travel to Myanmar via Three Pagodas Pass.
Article Written By Heather Carreiro
Heather Carreiro is a certified English teacher who has been writing since 2008. The editor of Matador Abroad, her work has appeared online at BootsnAll, Matador Network, GoNOMAD, Journey Beyond Travel and Expat Women. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in linguistics and Middle Eastern studies from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and is pursuing a Master of Arts in English at Bridgewater State University.