Kwai River Adventure
Kwai River – Travel Feature
Kwai River – History of the building of the railroad of the Kwai River
Kwai River is located deep in the thick jungle of the Eastern part of Thailand. Another name they call this historic railroad is “The Death Railway” dating back to WW 2. This is the Kwai River Story, but could easily be called the River of Beauty and Death.
This story is Written for both Travelers who want to go to the Kwai River and the Arm Chair Travelers.
Kwai River is one of the most popular and interesting tours in Thailand. Ride the train from Bangkok to see the Bridge on the River Kwai and visit the memorial sites to see what happened here years ago. From Bangkok you can be on the bridge in a few hours. You can elect to come back to Bangkok by late afternoon for a one day tour but many people stay longer. When you see this historic area its easy to spend 3 to 5 days here and explore all the history and attractions.
How to Get There
Thonburi Train Depot at Bangkok will take you to the River Kwai in Kanchanaburi
The Story of the Kwai River
Toward the end of World War 2 the Japanese needed to resupply their troops and building a railway was their plan; they were desperate and their resources were running low during a time when they were losing the war. Building this railroad was a better way to get supplies to Burma rather than by sea because of enemy ships. The Japanese decided to use prisoners of war from Australia, Great Britton, Burma and Thailand to clear a path and build bridges.
Today, there are several memorials to honor the prisoners who died here. These memorials are a reminder of the struggles and brutal treatment the prisoners endured. River Kwai his still functioning railway along the Kwai River. The Japanese were desperate!
Train to the Famous Bridge Over the Kwai River Part l
Local Thai’s Ride the Train
Kwai River lies in the eastern part of Thailand, close to the Burma border. The train today does not cross into Burma, but the train tracks go over a large geographic area in eastern Thailand. The main reason travelers ride the train today to this area is to see and learn about this historic area. Many people also ride the train that are native to Thailand and live in the area, or come to visit their relatives. Locals also go to Bangkok by train for many reasons whether its to shop, repair something or even go to school in Bangkok. We begin by boarding the train at Bangkok and riding it to Kanchanaburi where we will get off before boarding again to crossing the river (video).
The Train Leaves the Station
The following photographs were taken from windows on both sides of the train. The terrain varies and on each side. On the south side you see few small towns, crops, and empty spaces, while on the north side more farming, and small mountains in the not too far off distance; some of the landscape is beautiful, sometimes not, run down shacks here and there but a few nice homes too.
This video (below) begins after stopping at a small station before we get to the river area and Kanchanaburi.
Small towns and open land from Bangkok to Kanchanaburi.
Getting Close to the Bridge On the River Kwai
Now we are close to the Bridge and the scenery changes (the video below) and you get a feel of what the prisoners had to do to build this railroad. This is just the beginning of what they had to endure.