Bangkok and beyond
Destinations Destinations
Bangkok, Ayutthaya, Kanchanaburi

Dive into Krung Thep Maha Nakhon (Sacred City of Angels), the Thai name used for the kingdom's New York City-sized swirl of life, art, history, boats, tuk-tuks, markets, malls and more than enough sizzling woks to make you sneeze. Rise for an early northbound train to wander the 14th to 18th-century ruins at Ayutthaya. On day three, journey west into Kanchanaburi for travertine waterfalls followed by various sites related to the brutal forced construction of the Thai-Burma Railway during World War II. If you have any time left, finish with a float down the River Kwai, which is pronounced kway, by the way.

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Our recommended activities and highlights

Enter the belly of an elephant near Bangkok
Bangkok

Enter the belly of an elephant near Bangkok

The main event at the late Thai visionary Lek Viriyabhun's Erawan Museum, off Bangkok's southeast fringe, is a 44m tall copper elephant depicting the vehicle of Hindu god Indra. Look for scenes from every world religion beneath a tremendous stained glass ceiling crafted by the late German artist, Jakob Schwarzkopf.

Ride into World War II history on the "Death Railway"
Kanchanaburi

Ride into World War II history on the "Death Railway"

Thailand's most famous train ride starts at the steel-trellis bridge rebuilt after the original was bombed in an episode dramatised in the film, Bridge Over the River Kwai. Separately, the memorial and remains of an abandoned length of track at Hellfire Pass encourages visitors to appreciate the roughly 105,000 souls who died toiling from 1942-45.

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