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Wooden Mon Bridge, Sangkhla Buri

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When you visit Kanchanaburi, the classic tourist thing is to visit the River Kwai Bridge. But there's a less famous and more important bridge to visit. It's the Mon Bridge, not far from Burma (Myanmar), it is built and maintained by monks and is a ramshackle wooden bridge across an inlet into the lake.

Crossing it is spiritual... and also twenty baht, be sure to donate, it goes to the upkeep of the bridge.

Next to the bridge is a wooden floating walkway that the boats moor up against, this will give you your best photographs of the bridge, but the best view of the bridge is on it, looking through at the flimsy wooden beams held with bolts. This is no Milleu Bridge, its hand made and constantly patched and repaired as the wood rots.

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I've been exploring all day and so I will stay here overnight. I decided to stay at the Samprasob Hotel, it has a view directly over the bridge, a pool and Wifi. I need to cool down! They have rooms with air-conditioning at 1500 baht. I chat to the hotel reception and learn that the big things to do here are, a boat trip to see the flooded temples, shopping at the 3 Pagodas Pass into Myanmar, and donate to the Mon Monks, they come at 6am from the local temple.

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Up at 6am and ready made meals and gifts are available as I walk down the hill to the bridge just as the sun is rising, I can see the beautiful red sky and lake. A boy sells me some flowers before I head down, and he heads off the schools. His sister is left to sell the remaining flowers. Is she not going to school??

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As the sun comes up, I can view the bridge and the floating walkway next to it more clearly, fill up on breakfast and fruit and head off to do the first of my trips today, the boat trip to the flooded temples.

I see that house boats are available down below, you can rent these for around 1000 baht a night, they sleep 4-6 sometimes 8 people, and you can experience life on the water if you prefer.

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