River Kwai

Trip Start Feb 21, 2007
Trip End May 19, 2007

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Travel seems so easy and efficient in Thailand (so far!).  We were dropped in Prachinburi and an easy couple of hours later arrived into Bangkok and straight out on the first bus to Kanchanaburi.  Then us and our bags were raced off to 2 awaiting rickshaws!  Not sure the blokes realised how heavy we and our bags were as they struggled off towards a guesthouse! 

Lovely spot right by the river, nice bacon and western food!  (yipee no more rice and noodles for a few days!)   The town was filled with Austrailians as it was Anzac day. We headed off to the war muesum and cemetary and were quite shocked just how many people died during the building of the railway.  The cemetary was huge and it was extremely moving to see all the grave stones, most of home were about 21-23 years of age. Around 12,000 allied soliders died and about 7000 of those were British.  However not much seems to be said about the 60,000 asians who died too!  

The next day we went off to the Bridge over the River Kwai, which is neither the one in the film or actually over the Kwai river.  But nevertheless was part of the death railway and was bombed in the war.  Dunc managed to get all the way across but I freaked out about half way as wooden bridges, big drops and no railings don't seem like a good idea to me!  

Cool afternoon at the tiger temple!  We got to stroke about five of them, apparently they're fine as long as you don't go near the face (more specifically the mouth area!), wear strong perfume or wear red!  Boy did they smell!  The tigers were then taken back to their cells and the other animals allowed out.  The cutest little piglets we've ever seen and one peculiar pink hairless buffallo!  The evening finished perfectly, as we found an Indian restaurant with the nicest curries we've tasted outside of Shrewsbury!  

On our last day we went off to a waterfall without any water, as it's the end of the dry season, which was a waste of time!  Then we went to Hellfire Pass, which was the most dangerous section of the railway and where most people died.  Very sad place, but at the same time we were in awe of how these men could build it in such awful conditions.  We struggled just walking down into it.  So hot and humid and filled with mossies!   A lovely afternoon after a difficult morning.  We went off on an elephant trek, which was superb.  Bit nervous going down the hills, as we nearly slipped off the front of the seat (no such thing as health and safety in this country!).  They're such amazing animals, so much respect for them.  We got to feed them bananas when we'd finished.  Their trunks are just sooo cool!  Cheeky buggers were trying to get two or three at a time!  To get back to camp we had to bamboo rafting down a little stream.  Great fun, very wet and quite hard work too! 

The afternoon ended with a trip on the death railway itself across one of the rickety wooden bridges.  not much keeping the thing up and the train has to go so slowly it would've been quicker walking!  It was great to experience third class travel too!  No windows, no fans, no doors and definietly no cushions!

Finished our few days off with another indian meal!  Should keep us going until we get home!
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