TRAVEL GUIDE TO TRAINS IN THAILAND

by Richard Barrow

I have always enjoyed travelling by train. I did it a lot when I was backpacking across Asia. For someone with long legs, train travel is preferable to buses. Not only is there more room to stretch your legs, but you can easily walk around too. I’ve done a few train trips in Thailand, but not much for a while. So, as part of my new year’s resolution for 2020, I decided I would set myself a challenge to ride all of the four main lines in Thailand within one year.

Thailand has 4,044 kilometres of railway tracks passing through 47 out of 77 provinces. There are four main lines: Northern Line (781 km), which terminates in Chiang Mai, the Northeastern Line (1,094 km), which terminates at Ubon Ratchathani and a branch line in Nong Khai, the Eastern Line (534 km), which terminates at the Cambodian border in Sa Kaeo Province, and the Southern Line (1,570 km), which terminates at the Malaysian border in Songkhla and Narathiwat Provinces. There are also a number of branch lines of interest including one that goes to Pattaya and another along the Death Railway.

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THE SLOW TRAIN CHALLENGE: I’m still working out the details of the challenge, but I’m planning on taking the slow train on the outbound route, stopping at provincial cities and major destinations. The stops have to be a minimum of an hour or so or even an overnight stay. Then, after reaching the final stop, I plan to take an express train back. Outbound from Bangkok will be by 3rd class and inbound to Bangkok by any class. All outbound trains have to be during daylight hours. Coming back can be by sleeper train if available. [MORE]

The information on this page and the pages that are linked to are mainly for my own purposes. Both to help plan my trips, but also to document what I saw and experienced along the way. Hopefully you might find these notes of interest or even of use if you are planning your own train trips. Also follow me on social media for more tips: on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

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CONTENTS

USEFUL LINKS

RAILWAY LINES

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LATEST TRAIN TRIPS

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SPECIAL EXCURSION TRAINS

  1. Bangkok to Suan Son Pradipat (Hua Hin) via Nakhon Pathom
  2. Bangkok to Namtok Sai Yok Noi (Kanchanaburi) via Nakhon Pathom
  3. Bangkok to Pa Sak Jolasid Dam (November to January)
  4. Steam Train Excursions
  5. Bangkok to Mueang Sing Historical Park (Kanchanaburi)
  6. Bangkok to The Suansaiyok Adventure Park (Kanchanaburi)
  7. Bangkok to Thai-Danish Dairy Farm
  8. Bangkok to Ban Plu Ta Luang via Pattaya
  9. Bangkok to River Kwai Jungle House (Kanchanaburi) – two days, one night
  10. Bangkok to The Suansaiyok Adventure Park (Kanchanaburi) – two days, one night
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USEFUL LINKS

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NORTHERN LINE

ROUTE LENGTH STATIONS
Bangkok-Chiang Mai 661km / 411 miles 129
Ban Dara Junction-Sawankhalok 29km / 18 miles 3

From Bangkok, the route passes through eight provincial cities. Namely: Ayutthaya, Lopburi, Nakhon Sawan, Phichit, Phitsanulok, Uttaradit, Lampang and terminates at Chiang Mai. The journey takes between 11 and 14 hours to travel all the way to Chiang Mai. At Ban Dara Junction, there is a short branch line to Sawankhalok.

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EASTERN LINE

ROUTES LENGTH STATIONS
Bangkok-Chachoengsao-Prachinburi-Sa Kaeo-Aranyaprathet-Ban Klong Luk 259 km 48
Chachoengsao-Chonburi-Pattaya-Ban Phlu Ta Luang 184 km 15

Starting in Bangkok, the Eastern Line route passes through seven provinces. These are Chachoengsao, Nakhon Nayok, Saraburi, Prachinburi, Sa Kaeo, Chonburi and Rayong. However, it only runs through or near four provincial cities. These are Chachoengsao, Chonburi, Prachinburi and Sa Kaeo.

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SOUTHERN LINE

ROUTE LENGTH STATIONS
Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom-Hua Hin-Surat Thani-Hat Yai-Su Ngai Kolok 1,143 km
Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom-Kanchanaburi-Nam Tok 194.2 km
Bangkok-Nakhon Pathom-Nong Pladuk Junction-Suphanburi 141.6 km

From Bangkok, there’s a branch line that goes to Suphanburi, to the north of Bangkok via Nakhon Pathom. There is only one train a day between the cities. From Bangkok, train number 355 leaves at 4:40pm and arrives in Suphanburi at 8:04pm. Then, to come back, you have to catch train number 356 at 4:30am which then arrives in Bangkok at 8:05am.

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NORTHEASTERN LINE

DESTINATION
ESTABLISHED
LENGTH
STATIONS
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FACEBOOK PAGES ABOUT THAI TRAINS

These are the Facebook pages about trains in Thailand. Yes, most things are in Thai language. But I will translate and re-post anything I find of interest on my social media accounts on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

pr.railway,Trainlism,Rotfaithai,bkktrains,ThaiRailwayClub,trainthaiHD,531167837228431

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