“Travel opens your heart, broadens your mind and fills your life with stories to tell” – Paula Bendfeldt
It was a humid day in western Thailand and I’ve decided to embrace this beautiful day in amazing Thailand and decided to go to the Erawan waterfalls. I’ve booked a tour and went on a minivan with 2 lovely families, one was from Switzerland and the other family was from France. You can access the Erawan waterfalls on your own though. Most of you probably have heard of it, if you haven’t please put this destination on your travel list if you are coming to Thailand as its absolutely worthwhile. It is one of the most popular waterfalls in Thailand.
Erawan waterfall is located about 50 km from Kanchanaburi city, Western Thailand. Its a 7 level waterfall of natural beauty and its a paradise – no kidding! Its named after the three-headed elephant in the Hindu mythology. The top tier of the falls is said to resemble an elephant head. The park consists of limestone hills, streams and trees. All tiers are accessible by a number of trails and wooden bridges all the way up to the 6th tier. Last tier is accessible by climbing up to few cliffs, for those who like a bit more challenge. The total distance from the trailhead up to the top tier is nearly 1.5 km. There are many ponds along the trails that the visitors are allowed to swim. Don’t dive in but definitely make sure you do swim, its a wonderful feeling that I can not put into words.
Just take a moment and embrace it all. Take in the vibrant turquoise water, watching the fish swim around you and the sound of water all around you and then smile, close your eyes, put your hands up the air and say yes – this is beautiful. I took my backpack, my water bottle and put my cap on and off I go, I went hiking till the 7th tier as I just thought I didn’t come all this way just to go to the 4th tier, I wanted to go to the top so I did. There is a sign on the top that says “You are a conquer” and it literally felt like that, it was a great moment!
After that amazing moment, I hiked down till the fourth level and decided to swim. If you stand still long enough, the fish will come and swim around you and will nibble on your skin, its a bit ticklish but it’s like having a free fish spa, quite an experience. Most parts you can stand but just be careful some parts are a bit rocky and not so smooth.
From the first level, till the fourth level will take you about an hour so just make sure you allocate enough time, you don’t want to rush such an unforgettable experience. There are some parts that are a bit steep and slippery so just got to be aware of that.
How to get there:
- You can arrange a tour from Kanchanaburi city itself, I did a full day package tour that included the Erawan waterfalls, lunch and the death railway which was about 1200 baht
- You can do this on your own so you can take the bus from the bus station in Kanchanaburi city and it will take you right to the national park. The last bus from the waterfalls leaves at 4pm. If you do the trip on your own the entrance fee is around 200 baht per person.
What to take with:
- Wear your swim clothes underneath and then proper shoes to hike in.
- Breathable clothes (recommended shorts and shirt)
- Sunblock and mosquito spray
- Cap/Hat and sunglasses
- 1 L water bottle per person (there is a 20 baht deposit that you pay for this but you get it back if you return the bottle) as this is to prevent litter in the national park
- Camera/go pro
- Flip flops
- A little bit of money, there are a few local restaurants just outside of the national park to enjoy some lunch after
I honestly can say this was definitely one of my highlights in 2019. I feel so connected, alive and happy when I can spend time in nature.
“Fuel your wanderlust”
Hi there! My name is Ané du Preez and I am from South-Africa but currently teach and live in Thailand. I am a writer and a solo traveler. I love learning about other cultures and traditions. My interest started when I was only a child and my grandparents shared their travel stories through pictures, stories, and writing. This blog is to share my wonderful adventures with all of you. I’ve been discovering the gems of mother nature and its amazing people. Join me as we venture into the beauty and inspiration that is all around us. I am an advocate for all to live their life to the fullest. To travel is to live!