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Bridge Over the River Kwai

Take a walk over this historic landmark, which has become the symbol of the infamous Thailand-Burma railway.

Just upriver from Kanchanaburi stands a rather ordinary looking bridge that has become a national landmark. Made world-famous by the 1957 Hollywood film, The Bridge on the River Kwai, this concrete and steel bridge is still in use today, serving as a vital transport connection and link to the past.

Two bridges, one wooden, one steel, were built here in 1943 by local laborers and Allied prisoners of war. These bridges were part of the Japanese “Death Railway” from Thailand to Burma, so-called because its construction led to the deaths of more than 100,000 men due to accidents, brutality and starvation.

In 1945, Allied bombs destroyed the two bridges. The bridge that stands today once again lets trains cross the Kwai Yai River. Take a train over the bridge from the station on the east bank, or walk along the path that has been built on the sides of the bridge and enjoy the views.

Strangely, the bridge was not originally over the River Kwai, but over the Mae Klong River. The film The Bridge on the River Kwai, though loosely based on the story of this bridge, was made under the mistaken impression that the bridge passed over the River Kwai. When the film gained international popularity, Thailand decided to change the name of the river, so that it would have a bridge on the River Kwai, after all.

Today, the bridge is a major tourist attraction, with many restaurants and shops nearby. To see more of the winding Kwai Yai River, take a boat tour with one of the many local operators.

The easiest way to reach the bridge from Kanchanaburi is by train, taxi or bicycle. Admission to the Bridge Over the River Kwai is free.


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See all 121 properties near Bridge Over the River Kwai
U Inchantree Kanchanaburi £90
U Inchantree Kanchanaburi

U Inchantree Kanchanaburi

443 Mae Nam Kwai Road, Kanchanaburi, Kanchanaburi
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated on the riverfront, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of JEATH War Museum and Bridge Over the River Kwai. Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and Lak Meuang are also within 3 miles (5 km).

    Bamboo House Kanchanaburi £10
    Bamboo House Kanchanaburi

    Bamboo House Kanchanaburi

    5 Vietnam Road, Tha Makham, Kanchanaburi
       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated in Kanchanaburi, this guesthouse is within a 5-minute walk of JEATH War Museum and Bridge Over the River Kwai. Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and Lak Meuang are also within 3 miles (5 km).

      Sabai@Kan Resort £33
      Sabai@Kan Resort

      Sabai@Kan Resort

      317/4 Mae Nam Kwai, Tambon Thamakham, Muang District, Kanchanaburi, Kanchanaburi
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in the heart of Kanchanaburi, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of JEATH War Museum and Bridge Over the River Kwai. Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and Lak Meuang are also within 3 miles (5 km).

        Natee The Riverfront Hotel Kanchanaburi £52
        Natee The Riverfront Hotel Kanchanaburi

        Natee The Riverfront Hotel Kanchanaburi

        77/ 77 River Kwai Road, T. Thamakham, A. Muang Kanchanaburi, Kanchanaburi, Kanchanaburi
           
          3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated in Kanchanaburi, this hotel is 0.4 mi (0.7 km) from Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and 1.3 mi (2.2 km) from Bridge Over the River Kwai. JEATH War Museum and Lak Meuang are also within 2 miles (3 km).

          Felix River Kwai Resort £58
          Felix River Kwai Resort

          Felix River Kwai Resort

          9/1 Moo 3 Thamakham, Amphur Muang, Kanchanaburi, Kanchanaburi
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated in the historical district, this spa hotel is close to Bridge Over the River Kwai, JEATH War Museum and Thailand-Burma Railway Centre. Local attractions also include Kanchanaburi Walking Street and Lak Meuang.

            The Zeit River Kwai £42
            The Zeit River Kwai

            The Zeit River Kwai

            11 Soi Kumpucha, Tamakham, Kanchanaburi, Thailand
               
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in Kanchanaburi, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of JEATH War Museum and Bridge Over the River Kwai. Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and Lak Meuang are also within 3 miles (5 km).

              Kanchanaburi City Hotel £38
              Kanchanaburi City Hotel

              Kanchanaburi City Hotel

              368 Maenamkwae Rd, Tamakham, Muenng, Kanchanaburi
                 
                3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in the heart of Kanchanaburi, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of JEATH War Museum and Bridge Over the River Kwai. Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and Lak Meuang are also within 3 miles (5 km).

                Inchantreedoopool £54
                Inchantreedoopool

                Inchantreedoopool

                1/9 India Road, Ban tai, Tamakam, Kanchanaburi, Kanchanaburi
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in the heart of Kanchanaburi, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of JEATH War Museum and Bridge Over the River Kwai. Thailand-Burma Railway Centre and Lak Meuang are also within 3 miles (5 km).