Thailand – Day 3 – River Kwai Jungle Rafts Hotel

Today I woke up at 4:00am because I am still a bit out of sync. I talked with some of my friends on iMessage and Facebook before I walked across the street to the 7-11 to get some breakfast. I ended up getting some grapes, a ham and cheese sandwich, some soup and some coffee.

I walked back to my hotel room and ate my food and relaxed until it was time to leave for Thonburi Train station to catch a 7:45am train to Nam Tok. The walk was about an hour, including one river ferry crossing. I had already made my Fitbit happy before 7am!

The train ride took 6 hours instead of the scheduled 5 hours because of delays, but the trip was an amazing experience. Somehow I lucked out and got the fancy train car with soft seats for free instead of the extra 100 baht over the 100 baht ($4) base fare to Nam Tok. The train conductor asked for everyone else’s train tickets but kept smiling and nodding at me instead of asking for my ticket.

Upon arriving in Nam Tok I was greeted by a local driver who drove me to the hotel pier for 400 baht ($16), which is quite pricy for Thailand standards, but there is no alternative. We agreed tomorrow he would pick me up at the pier at 8:30am and take me to the death railway museum and then back to the train station for 800 baht ($32).

At the pier I waited about ten minutes before boarding a long boat for a 10 minute journey down the Kwai River to the hotel. The river journey was so amazing! The roaring noise of a straight piped diesel motor screaming away, the sounds and smells, the river rushing on by, the sights; they were all amazing. This is so Thailand!

Upon arrival at the hotel I received my room key, which unlocked something that resembled a lock that you’d lock your shed with, or perhaps the liquor cabinet from the kids with. I opened my room, which was amazing, with a huge comfy bed! I took the opportunity to take my new travel tripod out for the first time and take some long exposure shots of the hotel room, since the room was quite dark.

I then proceeded to grab a beer and a local dish containing chicken, rice, and a ton of spices from the restaurant before enjoying my afternoon reading a book and writing my blog. I even floated down the fast moving river in a life jacket a few times from one end of the hotel to the other. It was fun!

Dinner was at 7:00pm and included five local dishes as well as rice. All were delicious and very spicy, just the way I like it.

After dinner I watched a local Mon Dance. The dancing was cool, but I couldn’t really make out much of the music they were making because they didn’t seem to be playing the instruments in sync. I did record it with my iPhone and played it back with headphones after and it sounded better, so clearly my hearing has deteriorated a reasonable amount.

After the Mon Dance I went to bed. Stayed tuned for the next instalment in my blog series where I visit some world war 2 museums and ride the death railway back to Kanchanaburi and get to stay in a luxury resort!

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