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“Expensive ... but worth trying” 3 of 5 stars
Review of River Kwai Jungle Rafts

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River Kwai Jungle Rafts
2.5 of 5 Specialty Resort   |   Baan Tahsao | Tahsao, Sai Yok 70150, Thailand   |  
Hotel amenities
4.0 of 5 stars 416 Reviews
Bangkok, Thailand
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Expensive ... but worth trying”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2012

It was a long week-end in Thailand and this place seems to be the only one still have room available on our last minute booking. They have 70+ rooms and it is NOT cheap for Thailand standard. The location is in Sai Yok which is still another 54-km from Kanchanaburi. Since the location is a bit remote, if you are independent traveler like ourself, you really need to have your own transportation to reach their pier. We had our car + driver so there was no issue. From the pier, its another 20-min boat ride to the hotel. Being the only transport to reach the hotel, I felt it's a bit outrageous to charge 900-baht if you want to go outside of their scheduled trip (which is only thrice a day). The hotel didn't charge us extra since we left as per schedule.
The hotel is for those who like a bit of adventure. The hotel website clearly mention about no electricity, so make sure you are okay with no AC or hot water. There were complaint in TA about rooms being too dark, paper thin wall, mosquito etc. Well... tough luck...if you are on the 'floating hotel' surely it can't be made of concrete steel, can it? Rooms are made from bamboo and quite airy in my opinion.
Other than floating along the river current, you can try elephant riding or rent the kayak. We didn't try both. The Mon village is a bit tired looking. We tried the massage and it's absolute rubbish. The masseuse keep talking to each other.
Foods were acceptable and you can still have cold Coke or beer throughout the night. Overall it was a one of experience you should try. We're glad we ticked this place but would not come back for the second time.

Room Tip: The bamboo rooms were built in fours, so make sure you take the one on the sides not in the middle...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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416 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (43)
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English first
Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

The rafts were a pleasant break from Bangkok. The are simple, clean and refreshing. With no electricity, your are allocated lanterns inside and out of your cabin. There is never a dull moment, with activities you are always on the go. Jump in the river and get carried downstream, read a book, see the Hell fire pass or just have a beer. The only areas which may cause concern is group eating, and we got stuck with a total "numpty head of an Australian who thought he was better than everyone else. The drinks are quite expensive compared to hotel prices (location is tricky to get deliveries), and whilst I found it adorable, I dont think it would appeal to the 5 star hotel junkies.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Delft, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2012

Staying at this floating hotel was a very interesting experience, we were on a group tour and stayed 2 nights. It might sound strange, but it's lovely being stuck in a place with a group of people with no place to go and no electricity or any other modern comforts. It's back to basics and is really very relaxing because of it.

You do need to be mentally prepared for encountering critters; I had a weird cocoon hanging off my ceiling from which *something* had recently hatched and I double, triple and quadruple checked my mosquito net every night before heading to bed.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Chester, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2012

I would rate this accommodation as 3.5. We were encourage by the previous reviews but they were over-rated. The rooms as ridiculously dark even with the provided kerosene lamp. The COLD water in the bathroom sink was brown and the shower is pure cold water and wakes you up.
The location is brilliant and the high speed boat ride to the rafts is definitely 5 star. An experience, yes, but would I stay there again, NO.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2012

We were travelling for 2.5 months through whole southeast asia. This hotel offered by far the worst value for money. We had several cockroaches in the room. The food was ok. Our mosquito net had several huge wholes. We were quite disappointed by what we got here. Everything is a kind of old. The hotel has seen better times. It looks much nicer on the website than it actually is. It's a nice idea to have rooms floating on the river. But the price is not appropriate.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2012 via mobile

Seems this hotel receives mixed reviews depending on expectations.Remember,everything has to be taken in context.Personally I find it ideal at providing a relaxed environment for weary travellers looking for some overdue r and r in a tranquil setting.What drew me initially was the whole concept of the 'Floatel' For me a stay of several days would be ideal.We are not talking about a 4 star hotel but a self sufficient bolt hole 100kms from city life.I liked the gas lamps.I think the introduction of electricity would take away the novelty.Perhaps some hot water would be nice especially if you were staying multiple days.And perhaps a slight choice of food although this not perceived to be a problem for those one nighters!It's a bit like camping but on rafts!The beds are comfortable.Obviously no air con (u wouldn't get it in a tent would u)and be wary of talking or making any untoward noises in bed/showerroom that u don't want you're neighbouring guests to hear(!)For me I would deffinately be back

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lichtenburg, South Africa
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2012

We were really ill advised by our travel agent at Shelley Beach Flight Centre in South Africa as she recommended this resort as a place where we could stay to explore Kanchanaburri and surrounds - LUCKILY our children were teaching there and told us that would not work - it is miles and miles up river and only accessible by boat! Fortunately we only ended up going there for 3 nights - which was one day too long!!! The setting is beautiful, the rafts are very pretty with hanging baskets and they drift silently on the Kwai river as pretty as a picture - Hammocks and loungers are dotted along the 'boardwalk' - the rooms are tiny cabins with no electricity only parafin lighting but they are neat and clean. The river swiftly flows by and it was great fun leaping in at the top end of the chain of rafts and being swept downsteam to the last raft! The decks for the dining area are friendly and festively lit - Meals are all set with no menus - The food is cooked by the people from the Mon tribe who live in the hills behind the floating hotel - It was wonderful to step off the raft and take a walk through their village which they invite the guests to do - what a totally different world and a very different view of Thailand! The tribespeople also offer entertainment in the form of an evening of music and traditional dance displays in the tiny theatre 'on board'. We really enjoyed the stay but 1 night and 2 days would have been more than enough as we started to get cabin fever. The food was also getting rather monotonous. I definitely would recommend a stopover here - but not for too long! It was a truly memorable experience for us!

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheSerene, Owner at River Kwai Jungle Rafts, responded to this review, November 22, 2012
Dear Jennifer-Sannieshof,

Thank you for your recent stay at River Kwai Jungle Rafts and for sharing your experiences to other travelers.

The reason we want our discerning guests to travel by boat to us is our intention. It makes the journey to River Kwai memorable where a floating hotel is accessible only via the historic River Kwai.

We admit that our concept might not be everyone taste but it is really worth a stay for at least two nights so that travelers can really see and live with the nature and culture at and around our place. We regularly have some travelers who stay with us for weeks and return every year.

Thank you for staying with us and we look forward to welcome you back in the near future.

Kindest regards,

Owner
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about River Kwai Jungle Rafts

Address: Baan Tahsao | Tahsao, Sai Yok 70150, Thailand
Location: Thailand > Kanchanaburi Province > Sai Yok
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 12 Specialty Lodging in Sai Yok
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — River Kwai Jungle Rafts 2.5*
Number of rooms: 55
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
River Kwai Jungle Rafts. The original floating hotel or Floatel since 1976 in Kanchanaburi Thailand. It was recognized as UNSEEN PARADISE in Thailand and welcoming people around the world. The River Kwai Jungle Rafts is selected as one of the best for floating hotels in the world by The Telegraph UK in 2011. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
River Kwai Jungle Rafts Hotel Kanchanaburi
River Kwai Jungle Rafts Kanchanaburi
River Kwai Jungle Rafts Thailand/Kanchanaburi Province - Sai Yok

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