Kanchanaburi is a gorgeous Thai province filled with lush national parks, magical waterfalls and mysterious limestone caves. It is a perfect destination for history, culture and unforgettable adventures.
To me, everything is super scenic there. However, I'm going to share with you my top 11 most picturesque and scenic spots in Kanchanburi.
1. River Kwai Bridge
Kanchanaburi scenic spots can't begin without its iconic landmark - the River Kwai Bridge.
Millions of tourists have visited this spot to connect with its history and click some beautiful photos.
During my visit, there was hardly anyone here due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It was a bitter-sweet feeling. Nice to have this place almost all to ourselves but also sad to see so many businesses shuttered.
The bridge over the river is certainly a picture-perfect backdrop for whatever activity you come here for.
Here is another view of the bridge from Floating Raft Restaurant that sits by the river.
2. Sai Yok Yai Waterfall
The waterfall at the Sai Yok National Park is worth the visit. I admit, it is not comparable to some other waterfalls in Thailand but it one of the few best ones in Kanchanaburi.
The waterfall is one of two that originate from the lush forests of Sai Yok National park and feeds into the Khwae Noi River. This is the larger of the two and it is about 8 meters high.
You can capture this view from the viewpoint by crossing the bridge across the river.
The bridge is another picturesque vantage point with panoramic views of the forest, river and waterfall.
3. Tham Krasae Bridge railway station
This is an iconic spot in Kanchanaburi that is both historical and aesthetically popular.
Sadly, behind the beauty also lies a huge tragedy. During the construction of the bridge, over one hundred thousand workers died between 1942 and 1943.
The bridge is still in operation with trains passing through multiple times a day. Quite shockingly, locals and tourists walk on this track as well. At times, you can see trains chugging slowly behind pedestrians.
However, the train conductor does let out a few horns to warn people to get out of the way. Luckily, there is a spot in the middle of the track where you can step to the side and take photos like this.
The railroad track vantage point provides countless opportunities for photographers and IGers to take some epic snaps.
4. View from Wat Ban Tham
Located in Khao Noi, Tha Muang District of Kanchanaburi, Wat Ban Tham is an ancient temple. It lies between mountain caves and Mae Klong river, setting up marvelous views from up top.
To access this view, one needs to climb dozens of stairs, through the mouth of a dragon statue. It's an awe-inspiring feeling as you walk up, not knowing what you will encounter when you get up top.
The dragon tunnel truly takes you to another world. From here, you will witness a majestic scenery made up temples, lush vegetation, villages and rice fields in the distance. In between, the Mae Klong river cuts through the landscape like a twisting dragon.
There are stairs that lead higher up into the caves and a pagoda at the top.
5. View from Wat Tham Kaew Kanchanaphisek
Head 5km south from Wat Ban Tham to observe a similar but different view of Mae Klong.
This view can be seen nearby Tham Kaew Kanchanaphisek. The good news about this viewpoint is that you don't have to hike or climb stairs to reach it. It is possible to drive straight up here.
The exact location is at this Budda statue and shrine.
6. The scenic drive to Sai Yok & Erawan National Parks
Route 323 from Kanchanaburi town to Sai Yok and other parts of the province is super scenic in itself. In fact, I found most of Kanchanburi to be scenic, no matter where the road went.
En route, you can catch glimpses of beautiful mountains, valleys, and other landscapes. It's a wonderful drive indeed.
7. Bridge overlooking Khwae Noi River
We came across this spot by complete accident while. We had pinpointed the wrong waterfall on Google Map, which led us to this view.
To reach this bridge, head for Wat Mae Nam Noi using Google Maps. Just 100 meters down the 3089 road, you will come across the bridge that goes over Khwae Noi River.
There was absolutely no on here so we parked the car on the bridge and took our time soaking up the view and taking a few photos.
Goes to show some of the best experiences are the ones you don't plan and happen by mistake.
8. Endless views at Wat Tham Suea
When I first saw this temple on a hill, I was mesmerized. It is one of the most enchanting temple complexes I have ever seen - and I have seen quite a few.
The temple is mixed Thai-Chinese style with shrines, multiple pagodas, a massive Buddha image and views in all directions.
It is clear why this is one the most famous temples in Kanchanaburi.
Nearby, in the rice fields, there plenty of restaurants and cafes as well, where you can catch glimpse sof the temple from a distance. I took this shot from ตำลั่นทุ่ง.
Other restaurants or cafe you can go to are Aidin Klin Khao, Meena Cafe, and Rakkanna Noodle & Café Kanchanaburi. All these eateries are fantastic scenic spots in the area.
9. Erawan Waterfall(s)
Who does not go to Kanchanaburi and not visit its famous Erawan National Park? It is a must, right!?
Unfortunately, on my trip, the national park was closed. I was super bummed! I had been here years ago but it was so crowded that I did not get to see the main waterfall at tier 7 - which is the star attraction. I only got to level 3 and could not even take pictures back then.
Anyways, this is level 7 and wow what a magnificent natural beauty it is.
It is no wonder it is highlighted and featured in so many publications around the world.
I definitely want to go here when the national parks open up again.
Damn you COVID!
10. Srinagarind Dam Viewpoint
Not far from Erawan National park is Srinagarind Dam and its viewpoint. Again this was closed on my visit in June but luckily, I had seen it a few years back.
The viewpoint looks over Khwae river and mountain ranges to the south and the Srinakarin Dam towards the north. It is really one of my favorite scenic spots in all of Kanchanaburi as the landscape unites the river, lake and mountains so seamlessly.
11. z9 Resort
Head up further north in Si Sawat district and you will find z9, a luxury resort situated on Srinakarin Lake (Dam).
There are lots of other resorts and hotels that float on or along the lake but Z9 resort has a unique view and aesthetic worthy of Instagram.
If you can't stay here a night or two, you can visit their cafe, Zmone', and capture some amazing photos from up top, as I did.
Bonus: Keera Mantra Restaurant
Although it should clearly make the top 10 list, since I did not get to visit this place, I added it as a bonus.
I can't even imagine how gorgeous this view is in real life.
Not only is the view incredible here, but I also hear the food is spectacular too. Those mountains are a perfect backdrop for a romantic lunch or sunset dinner with a loved one.
Next time I am in Kanchanaburi, I will definitely dine here. Hopefully with some wine or beer too.
Now, its your turn. Which is your favorite scenic spot in Kanchanaburi?