I have looked at the accommodation reviews and some give conflicting views - I'm still no nearer to making a decision and would appreciate advice from other, more experienced travellers.
The places I looked at are Pong Phen GH, Ploy GH, Sugar Cane 1 and the Jolly Frog. Sugar Cane looks like it's out and the Jolly Frog sounds like a good place to eat but not to stay, which leaves me with Pong Phen and Ploy.
Has anyone here stayed at either recently and what is your opinion please? I will be arriving by bus probably after 4.00pm. (Land in BKK airport, bus to city then bus to Kanchanaburi) so would prefer a place that's not too far from seeing the city sights (museum, etc).
Also wishing to see Hellfire Pass and Erawan Falls. And of course, ride on the train and get off at the Bridge. I would also like to ride the train as far as Nam Tok. Is it possible to do this - that is get off at both places, or would I not have time? Would you advise doing these things by myself or taking a tour? The tours I've seen all seem to depart from Bangkok, I can't seem to find any departing from Kanchanaburi. Where can I find a detailed map of Kanchanaburi, I've looked online but they're fairly basic.
Thank you in advance.
We've been at Ploy's last Feb and we really liked it. It's between a busy road and the river, but it's very tranquil. Rooms are around a little garden, clean, good beds, good bathroom. There's a very nice breakfastarea and kind of a rooftop lounge area where you can overlook the river.
We came by train from Bangkok and drove past Kanchanaburi to Nam Tok (very nice raft hotel there: Boutique Raft Hotel). From there we visited Hell's fire Pass and Erawan. From Erawan we went on the ordinary bus to Kanchanaburi, so the other way around would also be possible. I'm not sure, I thought it's an hour and a half drive. But in Kanchanaburi you can book a tour everywhere. We like to do things at our own pace, not having to hurry or wait, and we like taking the public transport.
The only map I found was at the TAT office, near the busstation. Not very detailed, but according to the TAT-man it was the most detailed there was.
Probably about right for the Jolly Frog, but it depends on what sort of room you'd like - their rooms are set round a garden overlooking the river - very pleasant, pretty basic.
The food at the JF both Thai and Western is great - and absurdly cheap - for the western food -
next door is the Tamarind which has rooms around 300 to 500 baht, depending on air or fan, some have TV - and you can walk next door and eat at the Jolly Frog.
I would stay at the Frog out of preference but you have to bear in mind that it is usually full.
I also can't find their web site - the "jolly Frog" site at Kanchanaburi seems to be a travel site and doesn't deal with booking rooms etc.
Read up on the bridge and the background - the Bridge itself is pretty much a joke.
#3 khunwilko has been a member since 27/1/2007. Posts: 560
We stayed at Jolly Frog several times; it's cheap 200 Baht but very basic but wins us over because of it's setting (All rooms are located around a very nice garden). Also stayed at Sugar Cane which has better rooms, but smaller verandas. As already stated, the new Tamarin next door to JF is much better but more pricey.
There's no shortage of places (unless you are arriving Xmas or Songkran) and you can always check places out when you get there.
There are no shortage of organised trips and everything can be done from Kanchanburi. If you are on your own then Hell fire pass is best done with a tour. We did it on a rented motorbike but it's a good 2 hours each way - well worth the trip though. The waterfalls can be done by local bus, but organised trips seem very cheap (not that I have done any!!).
BTW, if you are going direct to Kanchanburi then you need the bus to the Southern Bus terminal, from there mini bus (bit quicker) or government buses run there for 100 baht.
Also, the old town & market is worth a day exploring. Try renting a push bike and you can do the to the old town, cycle over the bridge to see one of the war cemeteries (another is very close to JF & the like) and if you continue along the far river bank you can walk across THE bridge with the bike! It's a great day trip!