Image by Walter Bibikow / Getty Images

Kanchanaburi

Beyond its hectic modern center and river views, Kanchanaburi (กาญจนบุรี) has a dark history, paid tribute to at excellent memorials and museums. During WWII, Japanese forces used Allied prisoners of war (POWs) and conscripted Asian laborers to build a rail route from Thailand to Burma (Myanmar). The harrowing story became famous after the publication of Pierre Boulle’s book The Bridge Over the River Kwai, based very loosely on real events, and the 1957 movie that followed. War cemeteries, museums and the chance to ride a section of the so-called "Death Railway" draw numerous visitors to Kanchanaburi.

Kanchanaburi is also an ideal gateway to Thailand's wild west. There are some excellent national parks and an array of lush riverside resorts to the north, and many of them are accessibly by public transport.

Explore Kanchanaburi

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Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Kanchanaburi.

Top experiences

Whether it’s a guided tour of a historic landmark, private tasting of local delicacies, or an off-road adventure — explore the best experiences in Kanchanaburi.