Kanchanaburi is 120km west of Bangkok. After taking a bus for 2 hours, I arrived at the station. As public transport is difficult to find around this town, I waved down a family in what looked like a motorbike attached to a small shack and they took me to Warm Well Hostel. Although it was a shared twin room with one other person instead of a dorm like I’d booked, it had air conditoning and everything I needed. Lauren was my new roommate, from Pennsylvania, America. She snored, loudly. So I had a bad first night sleep.

The driver’s 10 year old daughter sitting on the front while his wife sat with me in the “shack”
Warm Well Hostel

The next day, I got up at 8am and waved down a small blue bus on the main road to go to Erawan National Park. All the seats were taken, so I sat down next to two girls on a tiny sofa thing bolted to the floor. I asked them how much the bus cost and we ended up having a conversation. Manpreet and Jasmine are sisters from Birmingham, England. Then a Thai lady got up from her seat beside us so I moved and a guy from Canada replaced me on the sofa. Stephen then joined in on the conversation all the way to Erawan. 

We paid 300thb to get into the park, whereas Thai people paid 80 thb. Along a trek of one mile uphill, there are seven levels with waterfalls. We passed huge trees along the way with dresses tied around the trunks as offerings to their God. The four of us made it to the top Phu Pha waterfall, but preferred the fourth tier where you could slide down one of the natural limestone waterfalls, and the fifth waterfall called Erawan which was more spacious.

Phu Pha Waterfall
Tier 5 ~ Erawan Waterfall
When we first got into the refreshing pool at tier four, I felt an odd poke at my feet. A crab? Then it came again, and again, and again. I soon realised it was the fish. Anytime we stood still, they feasted on our dead skin. The small fish were okay but it was just painful when the larger fish came to feed. I’ve actually paid for the experience in a spa once before, but this just felt creepy. I could still feel them nibbling at my feet the next day.

Jasmine, Manpreet, Stephen and I made it to catch the last bus back into town. It was so packed that people were standing squashed into the tin can for the whole 1.5 hour journey. Back at the hostel, Lauren let me ride her rented scooter around the block. I loved it, but the Thai have no rules on the road, so decided against renting one. After a meal out with Lauren and Stephen, Jasmine and Manpreet turned up after getting completely lost. We wished each other safe travels and I returned to my room as I was feeling exhausted.

In the morning, I checked out and rented a bicycle to make a quick stop at the famous River Kwae Bridge, known for the thousands of workers who died constructing it. 

Then I headed to the bus station still with no idea exactly where I was going. Although everyone I’d met had either been or was going to the Southern islands, I wanted to travel north instead.

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