The Mahachai Railway (Day 4)

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January 3rd 2011
Published: January 17th 2011
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Monday, 3rd January 2011

We left our hotel at 10am this morning and walked to the nearby WongWian Yai Railway Station to begin our railroad excursion for the day. Today was going to be our last day in Bangkok and we decided to drop our plans to touristy Ayutthaya.

All we wanted was to catch a glimpse of Thailand's countryside on a sight-seeing a local train. The Mahachai Railway Line provided the opportunity to do so due to its closed proximity to our hotel. Before soon, we had arrived at the tiny train station and gotten our tickets from the ticket window.

Our 10.40am train to Mahachai departed on time. Very soon, we were out of Bangkok as our train travelled westwards towards Samut Sakhon or Mahachai as it was known by the locals. The 1 hour train journey inside the non air-conditioned carriage wasn't exactly comfortable but it was certainly one of the highlights of my stay in Bangkok. I'm always fascinated by train travel and was fortunate to be able to fulfil my dreams in Bangkok.

1 hour later, our train reached the terminal station where we were welcomed by the sprawling Mahachai market. We had 1 hour and 50 minutes to explore Mahachai before continuing our train journey to Maeklong. In order to do so, we had to board a ferry to the opposite bank of Tha Chin River and board the 1.30pm train at the Bahn Laem Railway Station.

The next leg of the Maeklong train journey also took an hour to complete. To me, this was the most interesting part of the journey as the train passed through the heart of Thailand's countryside. If you had never seen ricefields before, you are in luck. The train made a couple of intermediate stops before terminating at the Maeklong Station where the famous Market by the Railway Track stood.

Stall holders would display their goods next to the railway track. They would retreat to their safe spots 4 times a day when a scheduled train passed by their stalls. While we couldn't see the real action taking place, we were just happy to be here today and experience a different side of Thailand.

Looking at the pictures we took today, I believed we were relatively successful in fulfilling our objectives. It certainly brought us closer to the grounds of local Thailand and provided an opportunity to interact with the local people through our limited Thai vocabulary.

There are few trips in the world that combined the best of railway and ferry journeys. The Mahachai Railway Line was certainly one that provided an opportunity to do so. At the end of the day, we arrived at our hotel feeling exhausted. Yet, this was one of the best trips we had during our 4 nights in Thailand. One thing that's for sure - we never regretted our initial decision to do this trip while in Bangkok.

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