Visiting the Famous Bridge on the River Kwai and the Death Railway in Kanchanaburi

Located near the town of Kanchanaburi in Thailand, the lush and tropical setting around the rail bridge on Khwae Yai River makes for a beautiful location in contrast to the horrible history which took place here during WWII. Estimated 100,000 people died during terrible circumstances when the Japanese forced Asian slave labors and prisoners of war — most of them British, Dutch and Australian — to build the Thai-Burma Railway, a part of which is the bridge.

The bridge made world-famous by the 1957 movie The Bridge on the River Kwai, and although the movie was filmed at another bridge in Sri Lanka, the real one on Khwae Yai River has become a major tourist attraction and a symbol for the notorious railway.

The history of the ‘Death Railway,’ as the Thai-Burma Railway is called is also depicted in the highly successful film The Railway Man from 2013 starring Colin Firth and Nicole Kidman.