Asia ’24 #22: To Kanchanaburi

Asia ’24 #22: To Khwae

Read this blog: The one where Matilda gives up luxury for monks

Wednesday 3rd April 2024

The day started with a visit to the self service laundry. We may have tried to do too large a load as we had to run the drier twice which delayed our departure. Theoretically we now both have enough clean clothing to last the next fortnight until we return home.

However, Matilda feels that going sleeveless is unwise in this climate and she should have packed more tops with short sleeves so may need to hand wash a few items to get her through.

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: DIY laundry in Bangkok

With clean laundry folded and packed we set off on the journey to Kanchanaburi. First we took the Skytrain.

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: view from the Skytrain platform, Bangkok

Then we had to walk a short distance to Thonburi Station where we bought tickets to Kanchanaburi.

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: Thonburi Station, Bangkok

There are only a few trains each day and the majority of the journey is single track so sometimes the trains have to wait to pass each other at a station.

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: Kanchanaburi Station

Both Matilda and Robert tried to get on the carriage at the front of the train: it looked marginally more comfortable as the seats had slightly better upholstery. Unfortunately it was all reserved: the end closest to the engine was allocated to staff and the rest was designated for monks only. Matilda, with her own comfort as her top priority, felt it was illogical to save the best seats for a group of people who have chosen to lead a simple ascetic life, eschewing creature comforts.

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: on board the train to Kanchanaburi

The journey takes about two and a half hours [see video of the day], initially through the outskirts of Bangkok where there were traffic tailbacks at the level crossings.

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: traffic at a level crossing, Bangkok

Gradually, the modern built up city gave way to poorer areas with track-side shacks made from corrugated iron.

When we arrived in Kanchanaburi, we caught a strange hybrid vehicle to our hotel [see Selfie of the day]. The temperature was still oppressive and the hotel receptionist helped to order a Grab [Über] to the main street. When we got there the target audience for this bar was clear: Matilda decided it was not for us [10 Baht is 22p].

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: Kanchanaburi

Kanchanaburi was included in the trip largely as a base from which to visit other places but over the next few days we discovered there was much more to see and do here than we expected.

We found a spot where we could watch the world go by which proved very entertaining. At one point a pick up drove past with several dogs in the back, one on the roof of the cab and another member of the pack running along the pavement.

TravellingHerd-Asia ’24: this blog doesn’t write itself

Here Robert was able to order Thai green curry [see Dish of the day]. The waitress asked if he wanted it hot. Although he said “no” and it had had coconut milk added it was still significantly spicier than Matilda could cope with. We subsequently learned that the mildest version is the Thai yellow curry.

Video of the day:

Selfie of the day:

TravellingHerd: at Kanchanaburi Station

Dish of the day:

TravellingHerd: green Thai curry

Route Map:

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