If you love nature and history, you’ll love visiting Kanchanaburi, a western province of Thailand, bordering Myanmar, just 3 hours’ drive by car from Bangkok and conveniently accessible by train.
The blend of history during WWII, abundance of incredible nature and rich culture make Kanchanaburi an ideal travel destination – whether you decide to take a day trip, or spend a week or a month.
Kanchanaburi has plenty things to do that you’ll wish to stay even longer!
From visiting Malikka Village, an ancient town where you shop with ancient currency and experience how locals used to live – to staying at out-of-this-world floating river resorts… You’ll fall in love with Kanchanaburi just like we did.
6 fun weekend and day trips from Bangkok – including Khao Yai, Ayutthaya, Hua Hin, Kanchanaburi and more
Here are 22 truly incredible activities in Kanchanaburi that will make your vacation the epitome of unforgettable.
PS: To fully enjoy your Kanchanaburi trip, we recommend getting a private car charter. We personally used Klook’s Private Car Charter and it was not only convenient, but super comfortable too!
1. Ride a cable car to a stunning temple with breathtaking views – Wat Tham Sua
This temple sits on a hill top, and you can take a short cable car ride to visit it – or climb 157 steps to reach the top.
First off, pay homage to a striking giant golden seated Buddha image resting in an open dome. Feel free to drop coins in a tray on a conveyor belt that carries them to the center bowl – a Thai tradition of making merit for good luck and fortune.
Next, go to “Ket Kaew” pagoda, an 8-story polygonal structure that holds Buddhist relics, and climb up to the top – sorry no cable car this time – for a feast for your eyes. The view is totally worth the climb!
Panoramic views of rural Kanchanaburi with rice paddies, the mountain range, and river stretching far beyond the horizon are unbelievably picturesque.
Without a doubt, you’ll find peace and tranquility up here.
Tip: Appropriate attire is required for women to visit this temple. No shorts allowed. But no worries, sarongs are available for rent at the entrance to temple.
Undoubtedly one of the most luxurious on our list, your river adventure starts with a 7 minute longtail boat trip – as you transfer from the private Phutakien Pier to your luxury villa – much more fun than a boring taxi!
The floating air-conditioned villas are large, with beautiful teakwood furniture and traditional thatched roofs.
Your private balcony complete with deck chairs and a porch swing, bobs gently on the river, the perfect place to relax.
For those who’d love a swim in the river, there’s a float on a rope for safety (and fun) too.
The hotel is based on ‘Contemporary Boutique Folk Style’ – and when you see the relaxing swing benches complete with straw roofs, and colourful soft furnishings you will totally understand.
Enjoy a sumptuous dinner at the riverside restaurant, watching the sun set across the surrounding jungle.
Why not take a trip out and go for a hike to check out the local scenery? Simply head to the restaurant and cross the small bridge there to get to the starting point. From here, you’ll be able to head to the cavernous Lawa Cave, Mon Village, Wat Mon and more!
The Float House River Kwai Resort has a strong sustainability and environmental ethos, making sure they fit in with the beautiful jungle surroundings – making you feel even closer to nature.
Be at one with the river and let your worries float away at the gorgeous Float House River Kwai Resort.
PS: It’s an extraordinary sensation every time a longtail boat passes by. Your villa and balcony will bob along to the moving current of the river!
3. Walk the walk of death and take in WWII history – Death Railway @ Tham Krasae Overlook
The name “Death Railway” was formed as a reminder of the many deaths of the allied POWs and slaves who constructed the Thai-Burma Railway during WWII.
Despite its horrendous history, this section of the Death Railway at Tham Krasae Station is very scenic. The rail track was built on high wooden structures, curving and bending along the cliff of the mountain on one side, and the peaceful River Kwai on the other side.
The best (or horrifying, for some) part is that you will be able to walk along the track.
But we have to warn you – it’s pretty high from the ground and there’s a train. Yes, a train runs through this track several times a day. So if you see a train coming, make sure to run really fast.
Don’t forget to grab a drink or meal at one of the restaurants overlook the river!
You will get a better view of the train coming toward the station. Remember to check out the market at Tham Krasae station for souvenirs before you leave too!
4. Spend a night on the face of the cliff – Khao Phu Mai Daeng Mountain
We’re not kidding. You read it right. At Khao Phu Mai Daeng Mountain, you will be sleeping on a stretcher hanging off the face of the cliff – secured by ropes 180 meter above the ground below.
A professional rock-climbing team offers a trip of a lifetime, known as Big Wall Rock Trip.
Start off by propelling from the top of a 200 meter cliff, down 20 meters below to where the setup – by professionals – is located.
You will quite literally hang out here in the afternoon, have dinner and spend the night, before propelling down the next morning after breakfast back to the ground below.
If you can get over the fear, the view up here is pretty amazing, and this will be the most thrilling night you might ever have.
PS: Recommended for people with a level of high fitness only!
5. Dress in the old Siam attire and chill – Malika R E 124 Village
Malika R E 124 is the newest, exciting attraction in Kanchanaburi that you definitely have to visit.
It’s a fun activity that gives you the opportunity to ‘live’ in Thailand during 1903 – when it was called Siam and was considered the Golden Age of Thailand!
Malika R E 124 goes above and beyond to provide the full “Living Heritage” experience. Staff dress and talk as if they were authentically living back in that time – and you will see how they prepare, cook food, work, and live their lives over 100 years ago.
The food and dessert is pretty delicious too!
If you want to play the part of living history, rent a traditional period Thai costume for a day to walk around the village, and exchange money to old coins in order to buy things inside.
There are plenty of beautiful corners and charming people for you to take photos of in the village.
PS: We recommend getting a colorful parasol to help shield yourself from the sun – it makes a great photo prop too!
6. Dangle your feet, or hang out on a net over the river – Dejtosapak Restaurant
Serene, calm and relaxing ambience are some of the words to describe Dejtosapak Restaurant.
This open-air restaurant with river, mountains and green vistas is exactly what you need to have a memorable dining experience in Kanchanaburi. Head indoors and the rustic wooden décor is perfectly placed to provide the right amount of privacy for diners.