Kanchanaburi is famous for its River Kwai Bridge, a bridge built by the forced labor of captured soldiers during the second world war. Except its not the same bridge, its a new steel one. One thing is the same, the river!
The River Kwai is fed by two smaller rivers and I'm on Kwai Noi visiting a waterfall Sai Yok Yai, Yai means big, there a smaller Sai Yok waterfall I will catch on my way home. I'm staying overnight in raft houses that float on this river. It will be a new experience!
Sai Yok Yai waterfall is a cascade down the rocks which you can play in, and then two main waterfalls that fall into the river. To play here, you need a raft, these can be hired for the day, and you'll be towed out to the waterfall so you can swim and play and picnic right next to the waterfall.
Since I would be staying at a house raft, I'll play on the party raft, which gets towed out at 5pm. This is quite an adventure, and a lot of tourists and their children enjoy the trip. The boat toes you out to the waterfall, the water hits the back of the raft so you can simply shower in the water, if you can take the pain! The water is fast and hard, it gives you quite a bashing!
Life jackets are available and they're recommended, the water is fast, and you may be a strong swimmer, but you can get swept downstream if you're not careful. Our boat driver had to take the kayak down river to a small sandy beach as two men swam to a sandy beach, and then couldn't swim back.
After a fun time swimming, kayaking and enjoying the waterfall, you are towed back to the rafts where you can order a meal, and settle in the for the night.
These house rafts are moored to the bank, float on the river, and only have electricity during the night-time, 6pm to 6am. So if you want your phone charged, or laptop for watching a movie, be sure to plug it in at night.
There's no air conditioning in these rafts, you don't need it, the water keeps the air cool and fresh. I didn't see any mosquitoes either, I was out till late and nobody got bitten.
Food took an age! A good couple of hours! It was excellent when it arrived from the restaurant across the river, but it took way too long! We were so hungry!
Showers and toilets are provided inside each house, the showers simply run off into the river, the toilets empty into a tank.