Kanchanaburi things to do more than the Bridge on the River Kwai

activities in kanchanaburi
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When is Good time to Visit Kanchanaburi ?

Kanchanaburi province can be visited around the year, but there are three seasons. The summer season starts from February till May. The rainy season starts from the end of June till October and the winter season from November till January. The ideal months for visiting Kanchanaburi start from November cause is when the monsoon rains finish so it’ll be easy for you to go around for sightseeing.

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Kanchanaburi & Bridge on the River Kwai City

Kanchanaburi province is fascinating, nostalgic and memorable place, only a 130 km west of Bangkok. The province itself is an agricultural area, with sugar cane, rice paddies and pineapple plantations all parts of the landscape, which is quite stunning other than that the city is the site of the famous Hollywood movie; the Bridge on the River Kwai.

Kanchanaburi shares a border with Myanmar. Most of the west of the province line with the mountains makes this province one of the most beautiful provinces in Thailand with its varied landscaped profuse with hills, jungles and waterfalls.

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Kanchanaburi to Bangkok

Kanchanaburi is not far from Bangkok. It is just 130 kilometers from Bangkok. Travel to the west of Bangkok will takes just 2 hours. Day tour will start from 07.00 or 06.00 a.m. However, to visit Kanchanaburi for several days too.

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Listing of activities

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Temple & Palace , cultural site

  • Wat Tham Sua, the sacred gold gilded Buddha Images, which has a very interesting architecture which surround by mountain and rice field.
  • Prasart Muang Singh, Khmer heritage sanctuary, which were use as Hindo Gods
  • Bridge Over the River Kwai , the historical bridge builds during WWII by prisoners of war
  • Riding scenic train , pass the historical bridge , cassava farm and villages
  • Visit Don rak war cemetery which over 6,982 solider killed in the war
  • Wat Wangwiwekaram , going to the temple which is the dam which is a breathtaking views
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Museum, Art and learning culture

  • Hellfire Pass is an area that Death railways cut the mountain by prisoners of war with hard work cause of death and illness of them. Now turn to be a museum and education center of violent history during WWII.
  • Kra Sae Cave , meditation place which was once used as storage and hospital of the prisoner of war
  • Lawa Cave, a large cave on the bank of river Kwai yai which as several chamber and numerous stalactites and stalagmites.
  • Thai-Burmese rail way museum, learn the history related to WW II
  • JEATH museum , see the picture, equipment and walk in the bamboo house which similar to prisoner of war live their life
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Top sightseeing for taking picture

  • Giant tree Kanchanaburi , the most biggest rainforest tree to take a picture with
  • Malika 112 , turn the clock back for 150 years Thailand town , dress in traditional Thai custom and take a photo there.
  • Mena Café , small café in the middle of rice field , near the big Buddha statue at  Wat Tham Sua
  • Rak Kanna (รักษ์คันนา) coffee and noodle shop close to Wat Tham sua
  • U&ME café , café with a lot of the photos corner located in Phanomthuan district
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Market, Community & Recreation

  • Pak preak , old town of Kanchanaburi with old house, café and market in Saturdays 15.00-21.00 hrs
  • Baan Etong (บ้านอีต่อง เหมืองปิล๊อก) . Former mine community away from the city which is very nice and surrounded by nature.
  • Sankla buri district opposite is Myanmar
  • Talad Kai Chalieysook (ตลาดค่ายเฉลยศึก ) Theme market neck to the bridge on river kwai which feature the look and feel during the war.
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Adventure , Explore , sport

  • Surfing along River Kwai
  • Tubing along river Kwai
  • Bamboo rafting
  • Elephant bathing on river Kwai
  • Elephant ride along river Kwai
  • Tree top canopy riding
  • Extreme activities at River Kwai village hotel (ATV, DTV shredder riding, Zorbing, Paintball, Borble foot ball , Abseilling, Euro bungy , Flying fox, Rope bridges & Sky clying, Rollerball, Bamboo rafting )
  • Mountain biking
  • Canoe at Erawan
  • Golfing
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National Park, Waterfall, Hot spring , Natural

  • Erawan National Park and water fall, perfect place for swimming in nature and jungle trail trekking
  • Saiyok Yai waterfall. This water falls into river Kwai Yai.
  • Hindad hot spring, and cool stream
  • Namtok Nopippon (น้ำตกนพพิบูลย์) , in Saklaburi district. The waterfall is 25 meter width
  • Nearn chang sook (เนินช้างศึก) military base , border of Myanmar . It is located in Tambon
  • Koh chang pueak (เขาช้างเผือก) narrow hill top which is very dangerous to go. But perfect for natural view point. Only recommend for athletic person since it take around 4-5 hours trekking. It is located in Tambon Pilok.
  • Namtokjokkradin waterfall (น้ำตกจ๊อกกระดิ่น)   the fall is high 34 meter high and very wide pool in emerald green color.  It is located in Tambon Pilok.
  • Bird watching
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Food & Gourmet

  • Mena Café (มีนาคาเฟ่) , small café in the middle of rice field , get a view of the Wat Tham Sua and mountain
  • Rak Kanna (รักษ์คันนา) coffee and noodle shop which surrounded by rice field and get the view of Wat Tham Sua
  • Have lunch or dinner at a banana farm restaurant (open from Tuesdays to Sunday, from 8:00am to 8:00pm.)
  • Making Tong muan (ทำทองม้วน ไม่ไกลจากสุสาน) Tong muan is crispy mixed with flour , coconut milk and sugar.
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Things to do with family , Amusement Park , Theme Park, Animal

  • Take pictures with Tiger at Safari park and camp
  • Get close to Giraffes and feed them at Safari park and camp
  • Malika 112 , turn the clock back for 150 years Thailand town , dress in traditional Thai custom and take a photo there
  • Enjoy fish spa at Rock valley
  • Visit elephant sanctuary at the Elephant World
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Farm Activities

  • Baan Nong Khao village tour to ride E-tak, making Pakawma, and cooking Thai dessert
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Health, Relaxing , Body & Mind

  • Enjoy hot spring at Rocky valley and fish spa
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Romantic Activities

Keeree Mantra Dining in the romantic in the middle of nature and mountain

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  • Take care of elephant at Elephant world
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Top Famous Kanchanaburi Attractions

Beside World War II and national parks, the province has beautiful waterfalls, raft house, magnification landscape & interesting river views and Cambodian ancient ruin. This is a recommended Thailand tour especially for those who have a limited schedule while in Thailand.

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1. Bridge on the River Kwai

This is home to the famous Bridge River Kwai. During WW II, Japan constructed the meter-gauge railway line from Ban Pong, Thailand to Thanbyuzayat, Burma. The bridge was part of the Thai-Burmese “Death Railway” they name it this because there are many men who dies during the construction some from not having enough nutrition, diseases, injured or abused by the Japanese army.

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2. Erawan Waterfall

One of the most beautiful and well known waterfalls in Thailand. It has seven separate tiers, each of the tiers has a different name but all of them have crystal clear water and pretty fishes swimming in the pond. The place is really busy on the weekend and public holidays especially “Songkrans Festival” where they turn this place into a water fight stage. 

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3. Hellfire Pass Memorial

It is part of the “Death Railway” that was built cruelly by POWs (Prisoners of War) during World War II. Hellfire is where the railway need to cut through, which is really impossible, but the prisoners were forced to use hand drills to carve the rock so that the train could pass.

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4. Prasat Muang Singh Historical Park

Muang Singh historical park marked the Western border of the Khmer in Thailand. The structure and architecture are in Khermer style and there’s a small museum that exhibits several antiques discovered at the site, including a number of Buddha images.

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5. JEATH War Museum

The name of the museum comes from the countries that were involved in these events: Japan, England, America, Thailand, and Holland. This is a museum that shows how the prisoner of war lives inside the camps and how they were treated. There are a bunk, photographs, authentic items and written accounts from actual prisoners, their family and authors who interviewed the prisoner.

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6. Don-Rak War Cemetery

This is the resting place for almost 7,000 British, Dutch and Australian prisoners of the World War II who died during the construction of the “Death Railway”.

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7. Elephants World

The elephant’s here are rescues they have been suffered, but here we will take a good care of them. In here you can learn how to take care of the elephants and treat them in a right way. You can spend a day preparing delicious food for them and bathing them in the river. This is a way to care an abused elephants and kind of a volunteer at the same time.

Anyone who looking nice experience with Elephant should consider visiting Elephant World, 40 minutes away from Kanchanaburi province. Feeding the elephants at several different stations , bathing them and swimming with them and even had the opportunity to jump off the high jump into the river are truly amazing experience that will happen when visiting here. In addition, the scenery is breathtaking since it supper natural and surrounded by natural.

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8. Malika Village

This is the new cool attractions in Kanchanaburi. There’s a plenty of activities for you to do and dress like you were in 1903 when it was called “Siam” The golden age of Thailand. Even the staff here talks and dresses like they were teleported from 100 years go haha. Also, there’s a beautiful corner in the village that are recommended for you to take a picture with.

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9. Wat Tham Sua (The Tiger Cave Temple)

You have to climb more than a 100 steps to reach the temple. But the view from the top is incredibly beautiful. The temple itself is huge and interesting with the big Buddha statue covered in gold mosaic.

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10. Sai Yok National Park

Located in Northwest of Kanchanaburi city the park is a famous destination for locals and foreigners. It is well-known for its waterfalls, caves, historical sites and raft houses along the River Kwai. The park has well-maintained trails with clear signs that visitors are allowed to walk on their own so it’s pretty convenient.

Kanchanaburi is a place filled with historical sights, fascinating history, nature and culture. It is obvious why this place is a MUST visit destination if you come to Thailand.

There’s a lot more for you to explore in Kanchanaburi , these are only the main attractions that we would like to recommend and that you cannot miss!

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11. Hin Dad Hot Spring

This hot spring is around 25 kilometers away from Vajiralongkorn Dam. The hot sprong has 3 pools with three different water temperature. The nature hot water is around 40 C in basics alongside the fresh river coming from the mountain. Hin Dad turned out to be an enjoyable break. The hot pool is found in an evergreen forest. Most visitors are Thai and some Russian.

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12. Rock Valley, Hot Spring and fish Spa

This place has a great set up with a dozen different heated pools at various temperatures. The hot spring contains different herbs such as coffee , tea , and Thai herb for an instant. There were 2-3 fish pools also. Visitors can enjoy a mud spa while overlooked the river Kwai. Relaxing and observing many boats transferring customers from nearby resorts on the river. They offer a great massage service along with drinks too. Highly recommend to make advance reservation to avoid fully book.

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14. Thai Burmese Railway Museum

You will amaze with informative information about World War II, an insight into the experiences endured by so many Westerners and Asian while building the “Death Railway” Artifacts and videos shown on a roll and including the interview with a Japanese Engineer. If you like to learn and understand the history in depth, you should not miss this place.

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13.  Giant Three , Rain forest tree in Kanchnaburi

It is an incredible and very scenic view to see the big tree which is huge and in healthy conditions. The three is off beaten part and well maintained by Thai army, which is around 20 minutes away from Kanchanaburi city center.

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15. Saiyok Yai waterfall and Rafting on the river

The water is very special since the stream falls down from cliffs to River Kwai Noi. This fall is in Sai Yok National Park, which is a mixed deciduous forest and dry evergreen forest.  Taking a long tailed boat or bamboo raft to pass the river is nice and very unique experience.

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17. Kaeng Lawa Cave

Do you like a little an hour adventure in a dark place? Let’s walk into the pungent smell of bat poo which loads of bats hung from the ceiling prob 1000’s. Continue to walk through various caves. This place can not reach by car, you need to hire a boat to Lawa Cave. Most of a visitor who stays or buy join package with Jungle raft, resotel or Hin toke camp will visit this place according to the program.

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So, what are you waiting for? Let’s pack your back, but before you come we would like to suggest you to check out all the information here!

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Package Tour

2 Days in Kanchanaburi or visit various destination and stop over at Kanchanaburi

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Day Tour

One day trip from Bangkok

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Things to do

Where to go and what to see in each destination