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Nam Tok Railway: the famous scenic rail route of the west.
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Nam Tok Railway: the famous scenic rail route of the west.

 

Infamously known as the Death Railway, the Nam Tok rail route offers one of Thailand's most scenic and most popular train rides. Although the ride is not stylish or cozy, dramatic scenery and rich history of the place will ensure you will have a memorable trip.

Leaving Kanchanaburi Station via the famous Bridge over the River Kwai, the old train makes its way through the valley among the embrace of the mountains. The first stop is Tha Kilen where you can alight for Khmer ruins of Prasat Mueang Sing.

The real thrilling ride begins some 20 minutes later when the train squeezes through a hundred-feet-deep rock tunnel at Wang Sing. Then it slowly crawls when approaches Wang Pho Bridge. Among hundreds of wooden viaducts built as part of the railroad which links Thailand and Burma, Wang Pho Bridge is a handful of them that has survived. Clinging to the towering cliff, the thousand-feet long trestle-shaped bridge snakes along the Kwai Noi River. Witness the hair-raising viaducts, and you may understand why its construction claimed many lives of Allied Prisoners of War and laborers during the World War II.

After a stop at Tham Krasae Station, the train slowly continues along the lovely stretch of the river among the embrace of lush jungles and tree-clad mountain ranges. The leisure ride ends at Nam Tok Station, where you can relax at the tiny waterfall. North of the Nam Tok terminus is the Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum which displays exciting history of the railway.

Get a glimpse of the Death Railway, you will find it an unforgettable train ride.

 

How to get there: Kanchanaburi is 86 miles west of Bangkok via highway 323. Trains leave Bangkok station for Kanchanaburi daily.

Three trains operate daily along the Death Railway. They are scheduled to leave Kanchanaburi Station at 6.07am, 10.35am, and 4.26pm, however, they often run late. Get on the train at Kanchanaburi Station is less crowded than at the River Kwai Bridge Station. Seats on the left of the train offer excellent views.