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Besides its famous WWII memorials, Kanchanaburi abounds in limestone mountains and refreshing rivers, providing a haven for adventure seekers, nature lovers and those seeking peace and serenity. With its variety and diversity of activities, Kanchanaburi is a perfect getaway place for anyone.
We will pick you up early from your Bangkok hotel and head west out of the city for about two hours by car. Then it’s time to stretch those legs with a bike ride! We take small, quiet local roads with little traffic that wind through quaint villages where the locals will greet you with friendly smiles and cheerful waves. Riding along irrigation canals will lead us to the heart of rice fields and you will quickly understand why Thailand is one of the world’s leading rice exporters. We take a break at a small charming temple where our guide will tell you about the importance of Buddhism in Thai life. After lunch at a local restaurant, we continue our exploration of rural life as we ride to Nong Khao Village before we transfer to our riverside hotel in Kanchanaburi city where you can relax by the pool.
After breakfast, it’s a short transfer to visit the famous bridge over the River Kwai. We’ll walk around the War Cemetery and learn about the tragic history of WWII at the War Museum. We then board a local train for a stunning ride on the Death Railway. After lunch and a visit to Krasae Caves we start biking along some great trails, passing by some teak plantations and small Thai villages on our way to Prasat Mueang Sing. This historical site, covering some 74 hectares, is believed to have been used by the Khmer Empire as a trading point along the Kwai Noi River. We ride around the park and visit the museum before packing up the bikes for a short drive back to our hotel.
We ride directly from the resort this morning on a back road, through the quiet countryside with karst mountains as a backdrop to Elephant World, a sanctuary for sick, old and abused elephants. We will spend the whole day taking care of these gentle giants. Here, we will work for the elephants as they are now retired, by planting their food for them – banana trees and sugar cane, and preparing, cooking and feeding sticky rice balls to them. After lunch it’s bath time and once you feel comfortable with your buddy, it’s time to get wet! Clean, rub, scrub and bathe your giant friend. After spending a day with them, you will learn firsthand that elephants are one of the most gentle animals in the world. We say good-bye to our new friends and transfer to our safari-style resort nestled next to the river.
For early birds, there is the option to give alms to monks at dawn with a walk across a suspension bridge to a temple. After breakfast we visit the Hellfire Pass Museum and then walk through the 1000 m pass, cut through rock by prisoners of war with only the most rudimentary of implements. We return to the tented camp and cycle to our next hotel, the Jungle Rafts. Along the way we’ll stop to visit a Mon village, an ethnic group originally from Burma, see their way of life and learn about their strong belief in Buddhism. In the afternoon there will be time to absorb the beauty of nature from your terrace above the water. In the evening we enjoy a cultural Mon dance, a fun and entertaining performance.
This morning we will float downstream on a bamboo raft. This traditional method of transport allows you to see water buffaloes coming to the water’s edge and the odd fisherman. Once we dock we’ll dry off and go for a quick visit to the Lawa Cave to see stalactites and stalagmites in many unique formations. Our bikes will be ready for us as we emerge from the cave and off we go through the surrounding countryside. The first part of the ride will be on country lanes and then we’ll hit some dirt tracks and great trails through farmland where eggplants and many kinds of Thai herbs are widely grown. We have lunch by the river, then get in the van for the drive back to Bangkok. Depending on traffic, we should arrive in the city around 5 pm.