WWII Museum


Close to the Death Railway Bridge, at this eclectic museum you'll see trains, Japanese motorcycles, anchors and old helmets, plus a great view of the bridge: the tower in the northwest corner is the best viewpoint. Only about half the exhibits are about WWII; other displays include ancient pottery, record players, paintings of many Miss Thailands and a display case warning of the dangers of alcohol and cigarettes. Between the two buildings is a stupa with coloured bowls decorating its exterior.

While it's well-intentioned, the museum's dispersed (and sometimes context-free) displays have limited educational value; it shouldn't be your first stop for understanding Kanchanaburi's wartime history.

Also note that despite the misleading signs, this is not the JEATH museum.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Kanchanaburi attractions

1. Japanese Memorial

0.06 MILES

The Japanese erected this memorial column to their victims in 1944, before their surrender. In a cold bit of historical irony, they forced the POWs to do…

2. Death Railway Bridge

0.09 MILES

Constructed by POW labour, this 300m-long bridge is heavy with the history of the Thailand–Burma Railway. Its centre was destroyed by Allied bombs in 1945…

3. Thailand–Burma Railway Centre

1.49 MILES

This excellent museum balances statistics and historical context with personal accounts of the conditions endured by POWs and other imprisoned labourers…

4. Kanchanaburi War Cemetery

1.58 MILES

Immaculately maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, this is the larger of Kanchanaburi's two war cemeteries, and is right in town. Of the…

5. Chinese Cemetery

1.68 MILES

In contrast to the manicured uniformity of the Kanchanaburi War Cemetery next to it, this Chinese cemetery is somewhat overgrown but contains some large…

6. Wat Thewa Sangkharam


This sizeable temple in Kanchanaburi is worth a wander to admire its grand, bell-shaped stupa near the river and various Thai-style shrines. In particular…

7. Heritage Walking Street

2.12 MILES

A stroll along this city centre street offers a glimpse of a bygone Kanchanaburi. Many buildings date to the 1920s and '30s and their Sino-Portuguese,…

8. City Gate

2.22 MILES

This restored original city gate (built 1831) is a remnant of Kanchanaburi's once mighty defensive walls, which linked six fortresses. Just behind it is a…