The bridges, diverse nature & cultures, shopping & more:
Our guests said they love the unspoilt people
& outdoors, the slower life here; here are places & things they said they enjoyed (with maps);
"Stay with us"; You'll be welcome.
Explore the bridges, lake, rivers, national parks, caves & villages; you can feel at the heart of nature itself
as Sangklaburi is deep within the Western Forest Complex, 18,730 square km.
of rich & bio-diverse wild habitat that straddles the Thai Myanmar border.
The Mon bridge (aka Uttamanusorn Bridge or Saphan Mon & adjoining Red Bridge)
just 15 minutes walk from Villa Scĕnns;
it's the longest wooden bridge in Thailand; a popular spot to see great sunsets & sunrises, morning mists or cloud hiding in the hills; visitors congregate here for Alms
giving & "breakfast by the bridge".
You can join or watch the Alms giving (Mon in traditional dress) in the Mon village from 0615 daily;
the alms round lasts as long as it takes (many merit makers or few); can be crowded near the bridge,
less so nearer Wat Wang temple or in the lanes.
A popular walk: cross the bridges with the
floating village below, through the Mon village
(for early birds the
Wat Wang fresh market
opens around 5am) on to the big Mon temple
Wat Wang Wiwekaram
& the tall golden pagoda landmark Chedi Luang Phaw Uttama 44 minutes walk from Villa Scĕnns.
Climb the Chedi & the
bell tower (behind the Myanmar crafts market) for good views.
Lake, rivers & waterfalls
The famous Thai quote ‘there are fish in the rivers & rice in the fields' is nowhere truer than here; the
Songkhalia, Biklie & Runti Rivers merge at Sangkhla to form the Mae Nam Khwae Noi river which in turn is
dammed 44 km downstream creating the Khao Laem lake aka Vajiralongkorn Reservoir; the rivers and lake are fish rich.
Motor-boat trips from the Mon bridge: the half submerged temples (1-2 hours); Coconut island,
(3-7 hours); the rivers for peaceful buffalo &
swimming & diving; take your time
& a picnic; enjoy the view as you skim past limestone cliffs, jungle, small farms & rafts.
Or paddle your own canoe just 5 minutes walk from Villa Scĕnns.
Song Karia River; Huai Song Ka Lia
for river wading; pool swimming & river eating; a natural setting; (our guests experienced
diy rafting & tubing (tyre-tube river drifting) downstream through the jungle - they loved it).
Nop Piboon waterfall
near the country road; enjoy the steady meditative sound of cascading water; natural setting, refreshing dips; cool off under the water falls for a great shoulder, neck & back massage - free!
Takian Tong waterfall azure pools; 30 mins. virgin jungle trek upstream (monsoon season
closed - National Park employee sometimes collects an admission charge).
Ran Ti river; Huai Ran Ti
Bikhli & Malai rivers River trip; the boat owners know where to swim, the sand banks & diving rocks are past the ancient
Sangkhla "Gate" where most Thai & Burmese battles were fought.
Vajiralongkorn Reservoir; Khao Laem lake; just 3 minutes walk from Villa Scĕnns.
Kroeng Krawia Waterfall
Namtok Dai Chong Thong waterfall
If you seek a challenge & great views: jungle trekking, camping, exploring caves, mountains & hill climbing
with guides; seasonally available; 1-3 day treks.
Sangkhla is sandwiched between Thong Pha Phum; Khao Laem (includes the Vajiralongkorn Reservoir)
& Thung Yai national parks part of the 6 million hectares of the Western Forest Complex; plenty of wild jungle life,
though the larger wild life does not come close to town we do feel surrounded by pristine natural habitat.
Khao Laem National Park office
San Nok Wua mountain; access point
Thungyai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary
Kaeo Sawan Bandan cave;
a guide is available most holidays (tips & temple donations welcome; take a good torch).
Experience the daily life & culture of Thai, Mon, Karen, Lao & Burmese speaking communities in
the villages around Sangkhla: you may catch the atmosphere of the old (now submerged) Ban Wangka as
many people relocated to these villages.
Three Pagodas pass (border), shopping for gifts from Myanmar, some duty free; visiting Myanmar (currently Thai passport holders only).
The 1943-45 Thai-Burma railway route (aka The Burma Railway, Death Railway, Burma–Siam Railway) passes through
villages near Sangkhlaburi including Ban Song Karia & Three Pagodas Pass then into Myanmar.
Kong Mong Tha
Ban Wia Kadi
Baan Mai Kalasin
Ban Prarai Nok; some off-road areas.
Baan Huai Kob; some off-road areas.
Ban Ton Yang camp; Migration Center;
advance permission maybe needed.
The Mon village; Ban Wangka.
Old Sangkhlaburi "Ban Wangka" (now mostly submerged)
Some "children's homes" in Sangkhla support disadvantaged or vulnerable children & families, for example:
Baan Unrak Thai Animal Sanctuary
run a free veterinary clinic and supports street animals and more; 5 minutes walk from Villa Scĕnns.
TOP OF PAGE
The Thai, Mon, Karen, Lao & Burmese here have colourful traditional ceremonies & festivals
most months of the year, some of the best in Thailand, & so far, by the locals for the locals so they can be quite charming;
visitors are welcome but as they're not well advertised, easy to miss; most observers are Thai visitors;
Sangkhla's a cultural centre not to be missed.
These ceremonies & festivals are centered mostly around the temples & churches in & around Sangkhla
and the villages.
Temples (Wats); Churches; Mosque
Wat Si Suwan
Christian Church 56
Christian Church Huay Malai
Coptic Orthodox Church
Wat Wang Wiwekaram
aka Wat Luang Por Utama; 45 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns. Thousands pilgrimage here every year.
Submerged temples; access by boat:
Wat Luang Por Utama, the Sunken Temple
Wat Sri (2nd. submerged temple)
Wat Somdet, (3rd temple)
Mon culture center.
Sangkhlaburi cultural centre.
TOP OF PAGE
SHOPPING & RESTAURANTS
The main Sangkhla market;
includes the fresh market, SCB & KTB banks & ATM's, post office, food stalls, restaurants, 7-11, CJ and plenty of shops for daily necessities; a “walking street” operates most Saturday evenings (plus 1-2 other days on some long week-ends) after 6pm from end October or November until April or May.
Walking around town from Villa Scĕnns you can reach most places in 2 to 30 minutes including the Mon Bridge & the Mon village; some places rent bicycles too (check it all works before you take off).
Some of the restaurants & food shops our guests recently enjoyed:
1-5 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns:
Chuenjai restaurant (closed Mondays) 1 minute.
Pornpailin Riverside restaurant 4 mins..
BBQ grill 2 mins..
Kobkua diew gan "a la carte" 5 mins..
Sangkhla garden 5 mins..
Kruakeangsuan 4 mins..
Baan Job/ cafe Bezo 4 mins..
10- 15 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns (between the market & Villa Scĕnns):
RanPbaLor 0830-1400 the best affordable food; 12 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns.
Baan Unrak Bakery (Vegan)
Garden Home, Western Bar
Toy’s (15-20 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns);
Restaurants around the market:
RanPbaDtaow 0830-1400 the best affordable food; 23 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns:
Rung Arun (25 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns - opposite the hospital);
Tum Aroi papaya salads, fish and more (air-conditioned); opposite the Post Office.
Restaurants near the Mon Bridge 13-21 mins. walk from Villa Scĕnns.
Mitr Samphan floating restaurant.
Sam Prasob restaurant
Breakfast by the bridge
15-20 mins. walk; a collection of coffee shops, food stalls & restaurants at both ends of the Mon wooden bridge;
open early, include:
Mao Deep bar & restaurant view of the Mon bridge
Accross the bridge:
The Noodle shop a long established classical noodle shop.
The Mon Restaurant an old & popular restaurant with a range of Thai & Burmese dishes & drinks
kanom jeen shop fresh noodles made by hand to your order
North of town
Song Karia River restaurant; dining in natures-own river.
There are many more places to eat in & around Sangkhla.
Shops, markets, banks, PO, hospitals, police etc.
Local mini store (1 min.)
Local mini store (1 min.)
Local general store (4 mins)
Laundry machines; coins (1 min.)
Laundry machines; coins (2 mins.)
Baan Unrak hand woven
Weaving for women
Christian Mae Nam Kwae Noi Hospital
Walking street on Saturday evenings & some holidays in the dry season
Three Pagodas pass (border), shopping for gifts from Myanmar & some duty free.
BSN Shoe factory outlet
Vipassana meditation center Dhamma Kancana.
TOP OF PAGE
Sangkhla is still off the tourist trail; that's why there's hardly a "tour" to be found locally; from information
on this page you can create 2 or 3 of your own tours; for example many guests enjoyed this tailor made
Halfway to the historic Three pagodas pass, (Myanmar border)
enjoy food on the river; sit in the bamboo hut, feet nibbled by the fish, order, swim; by
then your meal's ready. Later maybe explore up-river or enjoy some tubing as you float down the pristine
jungle river for an hour or so, or ride a bamboo raft downstream. If no one's around but the cook
you can ask if the lads with the tube or raft are around (they return you from downstream by motorbike)
a refreshing break on those hot summer days in an unspoilt natural setting.
Walk for 5 minutes to stroll around
see the lifestyle, maybe see some broom making & buy some brooms.
Takian Tong waterfall azure pools;
follow the path 25 minutes upstream through cool otherwise untouched jungle
(rainy season can be overgrown - part of the National Park maybe admissions charge).
walk 50M from the road; steady meditative sound of cascading water.
Both waterfalls are very natural settings & provide refreshing dips.
Kaeo Sawan Bandan cave 2-3km before three Pagodas; a guide is sometimes available (tips welcome; also a temple donation box); take a good torch.
Near the Myanmar border are
good shoes for good prices from the BSN export factory.
Three Pagodas border pass; wooden furniture, Myanmar crafts, gems, jade, jewellry, duty free & more (if you walk through some of the shops you'll be in Myanmar; not recommended!
Currently only Thai nationals can cross the border to
Payathonzu in Myanmar.)
Local transport for day trips is necessary if you're not driving.
If you'd like more "day trip" suggestions you can ask me.
(I'm no tour guide but like to share what guests enjoyed in Sangkhla)
People come to Sangkhla to relax;
"Stay with us" you'll
be welcome; great base from which to explore the area.
We do not guarantee the above information is accurate nor do we recommend any of the activities
mentioned as we do not frequent these & may not be aware of changes. Seasonal changes are relevant.
Please take all necessary safety precautions like helmets for motorbikes, life jackets for the
water, guides in the jungle, insect spray & other precautions. Best to dress conservatively, protect
yourself from the sun from 10am-3pm at least and do things with a friend or two as most places out of
town you'll probably see no-one else most of the time. Any errors or suggestions please let us know.
Sangkhla is generally a safe place for visitors but accidents are always unexpected!
WARNING: activities are often not licensed or regulated; we've not heard of any visitor difficulties but
beware you proceed at your own risk; if in doubt, don't!
TOP OF PAGE
Tel: +66 (0) 806 023 184
Villa Scĕnns, Tambon Nonglu, Amphoe Sangkhlaburi, Kanchanaburi, 71240, Thailand.