Saleng expedition, 16!

Our crazy road trip around Thailand and Laos on a tricycle (saleng).

Kanchanaburi, King's Day & Light & Sound Festival 2015 (Bridge over the river Kwae)!

Kanchanaburi is a town with many memorials of the Second World War. A lot of streets are named of countries that were involved. The Death Railway Bridge (Bridge Over The River Kwae) is one of the highlights in Kanchanaburi. We desided to stop by for some historical sightseeing.

Street names and the Bridge Over The River Kwae. Trying to drive through the railway rocks with the saleng, not a good idea.


As soon as we came close we realised the holiday and festival had taken over the cultural sight. It was the 5th of December, King's Day. In the last couple of weeks everybody started wearing yellow (royal color), mostly the 'Bike for Dad' shirts. Little yellow flowers, flags and faberge-style silver and golden eggs were put in front of massive photo's of the King as a symbolic way of honor on the streets in front of business and governemental properties.

We had to buy a ticket to enter the market (#100 of last month I guess...) and the whole market was colored yellow. It wasn't like King's Day in the Netherlands, one big orange pumping party. Here it was more modest, no alcohol was sold and no live music. On the other hand, the same commercial money making aspects were around... To see the Light & Sound Festival you had to pay another 300 Bath per person, two shows every night.

Thai style market during King's Day at the Death Railway Bridge.


To be honest, I didn't know what to think about it. There was this historical sight were many people died during WW2 and it was turned into a big party. Not sure what to expect we bought tickets, thinking we were lost in translation. There were not many tourist anyway, maybe 1 on every 100 people. We were seated more than one hour before the show at the River Kwae Floating Restaurant and could order some food. Apperently all the Thai families had reserved a table to have dinner and watch the show during King's Day.

It was a beautiful place to see the trains driving over the bridge.
Around 19:30 the waiters start giving everybody a small yellow candle. Than (I think) the Thai anthem was played, everybody stood up with the lighted candle in hand and sang along. Hundreds of people along the riverside were singing and holding candles, goosebumps all over. This was really impressive. I'm not sure if this was a contribute/honoring of the death people of WW2 of the King for King's Day, but every single person joined.

That the formal Light & Sound Festival started, it was an all about telling the story of the Death Railway Bridge - not touristy.

Light & Sound Festival at The Bridge Over The River Kwae.

Memorial photos.

More market area, this market was so big you could walk around for hours. Every time a train wants to pass the people had to move their shops to the side...

Having a saleng doesn't get you out of traffic jams any sooner than a regular car. :(

Sabai@Kan resort is definitely the most beautiful resort from our 'on tour' trip so far. Too bad we couln'd extend our stay, the place was fully booked due to the Light & Sound festival and King's Day.


Accommodation recommendation: Sabai@Kan resort, Kanchanaburi
Book with Agoda



Baan Rim Nam Resort with lovely river views! The resort was a bit out-dated and running low profile, but the scenery is worth it! (you need your own transportation)


Accommodation recommendation: Baan Rim Nam Resort, Kanchanaburi
Book with Agoda




___

  • 1089 km / 677 miles done total
  • 4911 km / 3052 miles to go
  • 16 days done
  • 76 days to go
  • 8 provinces crossed
  • 37 provinces to go

Provinces:
Phuket - Phang Nga - Ranong - Chumphon - Prachuap Khiri Khan - Phetchaburi - Ratchaburi - Kanchanaburi - Suphanburi - Ayutthaya - Lopburi - Singburi - Chainat - Uthai Thani - Nakhon Sawan - Phichit - Phitsanulok - Sukhothai - Uttaradit - Phrae - Lampang - Lamphun - Chiang Mai - Mae Hong Son - Chiang Rai - Bokeo - Luang Namtha - Udomxai - Luang Prabang - Vientiane (khwaeng) - Vientiane (prefecture) - Kamphaeng Nakhon Wieng Chan - Bolikhamsai - Khammuan - Nakhon Phanom - Mukdahan - Kalasin - Roi Et - Maha Sarakham - Buriram - Nakhon Ratchasima - Nakhon Nayok - Pathum Thani - Nonthaburi - Bangkok

Saleng expedition, intro
Phuket Town to Laem Phrao, and we're off! (Saleng 1)
Laem Phrao to Khao Lak, the Dutch bobsled team! (Saleng 2)
Khao Lak to Praphat, thumbs up! (Saleng 3)
Praphat to Ko Phayam, saleng on board! (Saleng 4)
Ko Phayam, time to relax! (Saleng 5)
Ko Phayam to Ranong, hot springs & Loy Krathong! (Saleng 6)
Ranong to Thung Wua Laen (Chumphon), coast to coast! (Saleng 7)
Thung Wua Laen (Chumphon) to Bang Boet Bay, scenic route! (Saleng 8)
Bang Boet Bay to Thap Sakae, we have a problem! (Saleng 9)
Thap Sakae to Prachuap Khiri Khan, aircrafts crossing! (Saleng 10)
Prachuap Khiri Khan to Hua Hin, snakes and dead end roads! (Saleng 11)
Hua Hin, we need business cards! (Saleng 12)
Hua Hin to Petchaburi, visiting a tropical vine yard! (Saleng 13)
Petchaburi, amazing cave temple and aggressive monkeys! (Saleng 14)
Petchaburi to Kanchanaburi, discovering the walking directions of Google Maps! (Saleng 15)
Kanchanaburi, King's Day & Light & Sound Festival 2015 (Bridge over the river Kwae)! (Saleng 16)
Kanchanaburi, Bridge Over The River Kwae! (Saleng 17)
Kanchanaburi to Ayutthaya, being the attraction and escort service! (Saleng 18)
Ayutthaya, writing Thai and some cultural differences! (Saleng 19)
Ayutthaya, ruins, strange tuk-tuks and Christmas time! (Saleng 20)
Ayutthaya to Lopburi, going Dutch! (Saleng 21)
Lopburi, bikers in monkey town! (Saleng 22)
Lopburi to Pho Prathap Chang, why didn't we get a car? (Saleng 23)
Pho Prathap Chang to Sukhothai, HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY Birthday! (Saleng 24)
Sukhothai, saleng at UNESCO World Heritage site! (Saleng 25)
Sukhothai to Phrae, we're not the slowest! (Saleng 26)
Phrae, think big! (Saleng 27)
Phrae to Lampang, 2000 km done! (Saleng 28)
Lampang, ladies not allowed! (Saleng 29)
Lampang to San Kamphaeng, visiting an elephant hospital! (Saleng 30)
San Kamphaeng to Chiang Mai, we made it before Christmas! (Saleng 31)
Chiang Mai to Mae Hong Son, Christmas time in the tropics! (Saleng 32)
Mae Hong Son to Chiang Mai, Mae Hong Son loop with saleng! (Saleng 33)
Muay Thai in Chiang Mai! (Saleng 34)
Countdown party 2016 in Chiang Rai! (Saleng 35)
Saleng to Mae Salong, the little engine that could! (Saleng 36)
Mae Salong to Chiang Khong, opium at the Golden Triangle! (Saleng 37)
Border crossing with saleng, we're in Laos! (Saleng 38)
Luang Namtha outdoor adventures! (Saleng 39)
It's too cold in the tropics! (Saleng 40)
Off the beaten track! (Saleng 41)
Relaxing in Luang Prabang! (Saleng 42)
Peak performance: Saleng at 1900 meters /6233 feet! (Saleng 43)
Tubing in Vang Vieng! (44)
Eating dust while reaching 4000 KM / 2485 miles! (Saleng 45)
Fixing the bike, one more time! (Saleng 46)
Reaching base camp, Thakhek loop with extreme cold weather! (Saleng 47)
Konglor Cave, underground river adventure! (Saleng 48)
Finishing the Thakhek Loop with the saleng! (Saleng 49)
Relaxing in Thakhek! (Saleng 50)
Border crossing with an unidentified object! (Saleng 51)
Farang in Isaan! (Saleng 52)
Reaching 5000 KM / 3107 miles around Roi Et! (Saleng 53)
Tree hugging and Khmer temples in Phimai! (Saleng 54)
Tasting new latitude wines in Khao Yai! (Saleng 55)
Cruising through Khao Yai National Park with the saleng! (Saleng 56)
We made it to Bangkok! The final chapter! (Saleng 57)
SOLD the saleng! (Saleng 58)


To be continued, stay tuned!



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