Prisoner of War Museum, Kanchanaburi

Categories: Specialty Museums, Museums
Inspirock Rating:
1.7/5 based on 460+ reviews on the web
Prisoner of War Museum commemorates the suffering of those forced to construct the Death Railway, built in the 1940s by Allied prisoners of war and Asian civilian laborers. JEATH stands for Japan, England, Australia, Thailand, and Holland, the nationalities involved in the task, and the facility itself is designed to imitate the huts where POWs lived. You'll learn about the Japanese-run construction of the railway that linked Thailand and Burma, during which over 12,000 POWs died. Exhibits display photos and artifacts dating from World War II. See Prisoner of War Museum and all Kanchanaburi has to offer by arranging your trip with our Kanchanaburi trip itinerary planner.
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  • There is so much here in this museum..... all kinds of artifacts from WW2 in the area. It again is an emotional experience!!!!! Some one of a kind pieces......lots of information written in English to...  read more »
  • Found this museum to be very neglected and run down. Many of the photos so faded you couldn't even see the image. No sense of order to the place; we just wandered aimlessly around. Staff helpful with ...  read more »
  • This place has the potential to tell an important piece of history in an interesting way, however I have never seen such an uncared for and neglected museum. Dirty, dusty exhibits, best thing is the v...  read more »
  • If you want to meet the stature of Mr. Nagase Takashi, please come here.
  • Very interesting and informative museum. Very close to the bridge over the river Kwai, and definetly worth visiting if you'll visit the famous bridge.
  • Not much to this museum other than a 10 minute video and walking through a room full of pictures. Just a very quick stop before we got on our boat that took us to the River Kwai bridge (all part as part of a package tour). Not worth making a special trip.
  • Good place to visit. Shows the conditions and the suffering of the prisoners forced to build the railway. Was it all worth it?
  • This museum could definitely do with being updated although the information that is there is interesting. It's 50 baht entry and there are three bamboo huts. The first has photos from the construction of the Death Railway and the Prisoner of War camps, as well as paintings of the prisoners. Some of the English translations are a bit hard to understand and a couple of the signs need repairing because the letters are missing and the words are no longer legible. There are some newspaper articles but they're all from the 80s, and while there might not be much new to say about the construction of the railway, we've had the 70th anniversary, and there must have been reports about the annual festival with the sound and light show, or about the number of tourists who come to visit the railway, cemeteries and museums. The second hut has an unexploded bomb, some military clothes and more information and news articles. In a small separate room is a screen with two videos, one of which is about the Hellfire Pass and is worth watching. Although it doesn't have much information that you won't already know from other museums, some of the images of the conditions of the victims are very disturbing and give a good insight into their lives. The other video is just still images of temples and attractions around Kanchanaburi, with a Thai voiceover, so skip it unless you speak Thai. The third hut is more newspaper articles. Again they are all very outdated, almost thirty years, and a lot of them have faded from exposure to sunlight. With these are sketches and watercolours, also quite faded but worth a look. Overall I enjoyed the museum. In some ways it added to its charm that it seemed to have been left exactly the same as it would have been when it first opened. If you want a more comprehensive and modern view then go to the Thailand-Burma death museum and railway centre near the train station, but this one is a third of the price and is worth visiting.
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