Public services from Kanchanaburi to Erawan Falls
Busses to Sangkhlaburi stops by at Sai Yok Noi Waterfall, Hellfire Pass and Sai Yok National Park, leaves Kanchanaburi every 30 minutes from 6 am until 6:30 pm. Tickets costs 60 Baht, the bus trip to the visitor centre takes a bit more than 1.5 hours. The visitor centre is nearly 3 km off from the highwat 323 where the buses stops. There are motorcycle taxis opearating to the park near the turn-off point for 20 Baht per person. The park staff at the visitor centre will help to call motorcycle taxis when leaving the park. The last bus from Sangkhlaburi to Kanchanaburi passes around 5 pm, so it is good to be early to catch it in time.
It is also possible to take the train to a train station near Sai Yok Noi Waterfall, visitors can take a train from Kanchanaburi to Namtok Station and continue on foot or by local transport to the waterfall, which is 2 kilometers away. Trains depart from Kanchanaburi at 6.11 a.m., 11 a.m. and 4.37 p.m. and return from Namtok Station at 5.25 a.m. 1 p.m. and 3.15 p.m. The one-way rail trip takes about 2 hours and costs 17 baht. (Please check the current schedule from TAT Kanchanaburi or the railway station before departure.)
(Details here last updated on February 2016. If the details are too old, please remind us by using contact-us pages)
Public services to Kanchanaburi (*)
From Bangkok to Kanchanaburi:
BKS public buses (line 81) leave from Bangkok's Southern Bus Terminal (Sai Tai Taling Chan สายใต้ตลิ่งชัน), which is located far west in the suburb Thonburi. In Kanchanaburi, there are two separate but nearby bus terminals, with 1st class buses departing from an office off Thanon Saengchuto, and 2nd class buses from the larger terminal one block east.
1st class buses should leave Bangkok every 15 minutes from 05:00-22:30, take about 2 hours, and cost 110 baht, including a bottle of water.
2nd class buses (new route) leave Bangkok every 20 minutes from 03:30-19:00 and take about 2 hours. Cost 95 baht.
2nd class buses (old route) leave Bangkok every 15-30 minutes from 04:00-18:00 and take about 3 hours.
There are also tourist minibuses directly to/from Khao San Road, departing Kanchanaburi at 13:30 and 18:30.
There are also some buses leaving less frequently from Bangkok's Northern Mo Chit bus terminal (note: not the same as Mo Chit BTS station, and not within walking distance of it, although a standard 50 baht motorbike ride is available. It's often called "Mo Chit 2"). Here are the times I could find at the station:
First-class bus with toilet (3 hours, 122 baht): 06:00, 11:00, 14:30
Second class bus with no toilet inside: 05:00, 07:00, 09:30, 12:30, 17:00
Minibus leave from Terminal 4 regularly, (12 noon was one of the scheduled times) taking 3 hours for 120 baht (July 2015)
Bus rides may be variable or cancelled (for example, with 14:30 being last of the day.) BUT there are vans available at the bus station leaving even when you're told there's no way to get there by bus! It may pay to talk to the information desk for this. Price Feb '11 was around 120 baht, about 2 hrs.
From Nakhon Pathom, there are direct buses (2nd class only) every 15 to 30 minutes between 04:00 and 18:00, which take two hours. Alternatively, you can hop off a 1st class bus when it passes by Nakhon Pathom, but double-check with staff to ensure the route allows this and they know your plans.
From Sangkhlaburi to Kanchanaburi, you're spoilt for choice:
Air-con VIP buses leave at 08:45, 10:45 and 14:30 and take 4 hours.
Air-con minibuses leave at 06:30, 07:30, 11:30, 13:00, 15:30 and take 3.5 hours.
Standard buses leave at 06:45, 08:15, 10:15, 13:15 and take 5 hours.
From Pattaya to Kanchanaburi:
There is a direct bus from Pattaya to Kanchanaburi, running 2 times a day (9:30am and 7:30pm), departing from Central Pattaya, arriving at Kanchanaburi Bus Terminal. The bus service is provided by Sri Mongkol bus company.
Travel duration: approximately 5 hours (distance of about 220km - 230km)
Bus ticket price: THB315 (price as at January 2016. Double-deck bus with air conditioner & toilet on board, price includes 1 free bottle of water & one chocolate bon)
Where to buy ticket & depart: Sri Mongkol bus terminal at Chaloem Phrakiat, Pattaya Sai 3 (Direction: on Central Pattaya Road, find the TOT building (Telecommunication Company), Chaloem Phrakiat/Pattaya Sai 3 intersects with Central Pattaya road at this TOT building. The Sri Mongkol bus terminal is just about 150 meters north from the TOT building on Chaloem Phrakiat on the west side. It is hard to find, it is in the strip of shops, just before a large empty lot (as of January 2016)
Sri Mongkol contact: 089-280-2255 or 081-876-7770, or 081-879-9494, or 081-547-1548
Tips: best to buy ticket at least one day in advance. As with many other Thais outside Bangkok, the company staff cannot understand & speak English well, especially over the phone. If there is any problem communicating to the staff, consider asking your hotel/hostel staff to speak to them in Thai over the phone, e.g. asking for the bus station address and have the hotel staff write it down in Thai - taxi/tuk tuk driver could find the place easier that way.
The 5-hour journey is quite long but the road quality is pretty good with hardly any problem. A good option to consider if one does not want to go to Kanchanaburi from Pattaya via going back to Bangkok. Beats using two minivans (cost 280 B depending on which company you use) and is only 30 Baht more.
From Ayutthaya to Kanchanaburi:
Ayutthaya - Suphanburi, public minibus no. 703, 80 baht, travel time 1.5h, leaves every 30m. from Chao Phrom market bus station. Suphanburi - Kanchanaburi, bus no. 411, 50 baht, travel time 1.5h, leaves every 20m. By minivan directly from your hotel at 9:30am or 4:30pm. 400 baht per person. Takes 2.5 hours. Book through a tour agent.
Trains leave Bangkok's Thonburi Train Station at 07:50 and arrive at Kanchanaburi at 10:25, also at 13:55 and arriving at 16:24. You may be interested in buying a ticket all the way to the River Kwai Bridge, since these two trains are the only ones which cross the bridge each day. Since December 2005, the fare is 100 baht for foreigners.
Be warned that reaching Thonburi Station from Khao San Road is harder than it looks; tuk-tuk drivers will try to charge you outrageous rates, and walking involves crossing two bridges and looping back a ways. The best way is probably to take the passenger boat from Phra Arthit Pier and connect to a cross-river ferry that reaches the Thonburi Railway pier, then walk or take the open minibus from there. The other way to reach Thonburi (Bangkok Noi) Station is walk little bit south from Thammasat university (next to Sanam Luang), take river ferry (3THB) from Wat Mahathat to Wanglong, on the other side of river walk west until you reach main north-south road, here walk north until you reach big bridge where you will go under it and then just walk west to train station, all this from Khao San Road to train station takes only about 30-40mins easy walk + river ferry. You can also walk a bit away from Khao San Road and find a metered taxi that will not rip you off. The fare should be about 70-80 baht from Khao San on the meter. If you miss the train taxi from Thonburi train station to Sai Tai Mai bus terminal for buses to Kanchanaburi (110THB) costs 80 baht.
Alternatively, use google maps routeplanner on your smartphone or on the computer in your hostel, and look for a local bus connection.
Return trains leave at 07:25 and 14:48 from the main railway station; from the River Kwai Bridge they leave 6 minutes earlier. Riding 3rd class is an adventure in itself, and definitely recommended.
Both train services continue to/from Nam Tok, the current terminus of the Death Railway. The normal trains will charge "Farangs" (Westerners) 100 baht in each direction from Kanchanaburi to Wang Pho, the last station before Nam Tok. Thais pay a lot less.
The 10:30 train has a special tourist section, where the low, low price of 300 baht gets you air-con, a soft drink and a certificate of having ridden the Death Railway. This service has occasionally been operated by a steam engine, but usually uses an ordinary diesel DMU, and rail fans will have to content themselves with the Japanese-era steamers plinthed at the main and bridge stations, also at the waterfall in Nam Tok Noi. The steam train rides no longer operate.
Minivans depart to Kanchanaburi from BTS Victory Monument. The minivans leave when they are full or every 15 minutes. The price is 130 baht from Bangkok to Kanchanaburi and 120 baht from Kanchanaburi to Bangkok.
Kanchanaburi is about 3 hours drive from Bangkok, along Hwy 4 (Phet Kasem) from Bangkok until it meets Hwy 323. This will take you all the way to Kanchanaburi.
By limousine taxi
Bangkok (Airport) limousines are a comfortable and swift means of travel between Thailand's capitol and Kanchanaburi. Transfer rates by luxury Japanese sedan are typically from 3,000-3,500 baht. (Site note: A single trip space-wagon service costs 2200 Baht through our website, see details.)
For shorter travel, day trips from Bangkok are commonly sold at Bangkok travel agencies. Typically these include Toyota minibus transport from one's hotel to Kanchanaburi and back (visiting the famous bridge, Erawan National Park, etc., depending on the package), and perhaps lunch and entrance fees. One example, circa early 2011: approximately 1,100 baht for transport, lunch, and entrance fees to Erawan National Park & the famous bridge.
(*) Source: Wikitraval.org. This section of the copy ("Public services to Kanchanaburi") is available under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0.
Driving to Sai Yok National Park
- Take the highway route 4 west out from Bangkok and drive 64 until you are through Nakhon Pathom and reached the junction to route 323
- Turn right to the route 323 and drive 160 km until you reach a sign pointing to Sai Yok National Park
- Turn left and drive another 3 km
- Drive 2km west from town on route 3263 till you get to the junction to route 347 and 3263
- Turn left in junction to route 347 and drive 38 km until you reach the T-junction to route 346
- Turn right on route 346 and keep an eye on signs for route 346 through few junctions. Drive the whole route for 102 km until you reach the T-junction to route 324.
- Turn left on route 324 and drive 23km until you reach central Kanchanaburi.
- Turn right to route 323 and drive 100 km until you reach a sign pointing to Sai Yok National Park
- Turn left and drive another 3 km
Most visitors doing a trip to Erawan Waterfalls or Sai Yok National Park normally stays in Kanchanaburi. There are many other interesting natural attractions in the province, many of these are in a convenient distance from some of resorts listed here.
See below few recommended or popular hotels in and around the city. River Kwai Park & Resort is located next to the river on the east side of Erawan National Park. The Float House River Kwai Resort is a recommended resort near Sai Yok National Park with beautiful view over the lush forests.
- River Kwai Resotel Resort | Kanchanaburi, from 60 USD
- The Float House River Kwai Resort | Kanchanaburi, from 158 USD
- Royal River kwai Resort & Spa | Kanchanaburi, from 54 USD
- U Inchantree Kanchanaburi Hotel | Kanchanaburi, from 93 USD
- Away Kanchanaburi Dheva Mantra Resort & Spa | Kanchanaburi, from 70 USD
- Hop Inn Kanchanaburi | Kanchanaburi, from 20 USD
- River Kwai Bridge Resort | Kanchanaburi, from 31 USD
- Bamboo House Kanchanaburi | Kanchanaburi, from 12 USD
- Mida Resort Kanchanaburi | Kanchanaburi, from 60 USD
- The Legacy River Kwai Resort | Kanchanaburi, from 44 USD