Excursions, Hotels — 9 May 2013 10 h 18 min

Getting some WWII history in Kanchanaburi.

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Getting some WWII history in Kanchanaburi.
At around 130 km. from the Thai capital of Bangkok in the west of the country, bordering Myanmar (Burma) lays the fourth biggest province of the Kingdom, Kanchanaburi or shortened by locals just as ” Kan”.
This province which capital has the same name, harbors much of Thailand’s jungle and mountains, as well as the most famous bridge from the second World War, the brigade over the river Kwai.
More about the countries history during the war can be learned in this small but pleasant town.
Bridge over river Kwai,
The famous bridge known from the movie “Bridge over the river Kwai” which was not filmed in Kanchanaburi but on location in Sri Lanka, is by far most the most visited site in the city.
It’s role in the second World War by the construction from the “Death Railway” and the “Hellfire Pass”, the Japanese passage through Birma for their reinforcements for their attack on India, has cost many lives.
The steel bridge, (the wooden one, a few hundreds of meters upstream hasn’t survived) can be visited on foot, or 3 times a day you can catch a train to get over it.
While exploring the bridge on foot, watch out to step aside to let the train pass.
While constructing the bridge and the railway on both ends, the Myanmar and the Thai side of the track approximately 13.000 prisoners of war from several different countries, like England, the Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand.
Many of these POW are buried on the 2 war cemeteries which are found in and around the city.
At least 70.000 civilians died in the construction and battles around the city as well.
Significant detail is that most of the visitors to the bridge organized by Bangkok based tour operators are Japanese tourist who stand proudly on the bridge getting their photo’s taken, forgotten that it where their troops who got so many people killed.
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Bridge on the river kwai

Bridge on the river kwai

The bridge on the river kwai

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