The Maeklong Railway

 

 

The Maeklong line is an isolated section of Thai State Railway running for about 30km between Wong Wian Yai station in south west Bangkok and Maha Chai station in the satellite city of Samut Sakhon.

Currently operating on a single track with passing loops the line has no operational signalling system, trains being controlled by telephone and radio.

As part of a major update of the national railway system the Thai government is about to upgrade the line to full double track commuter operation, it will also be linked to the rest of the national system by a new bridge over the Mae Nam Chao Phraya river in Bangkok. A further bridge at the Maha Chai end will replace the current passenger ferry and link to the line travelling east from Samut Sakhon.

The pictures on this page are of the line as it is today (January 2005) before is is updated and sanitised. As with all of my pages, click on an image for a larger version.


 

The Bangkok end of the Maeklong line is at Wong Wian Yai, although well marked on the city maps the station is not immediately obvious as this picture shows. The line just seems to finish without even a buffer.

 

See, there is a station in there :)

 

Now you've located the station join the queue and purchase a ticket, when we travelled the line a single to Maha Chai was a whole 10 Baht about US$0.20 (yes, that is twenty CENTS).

 

The train stops at various stations along the way.

 

As the train approaches Maha Chai it trundles through the market.

 

The station at Maha Chai also houses the out of service trains. The platforms under the covered area are filled with stalls selling everything you could imagine.

 

Once outside the station, Samut Sakhon is a bustling city. Like much of Thailand, every day appears to be market day.

 

Whether need offerings for your temple ...  

 

... or a set of steps for your home, this place has everything.

 

 

 

Samut Sakhon is a bustling fishing port...

... meaning that a vast array of fresh seafood is always available, at very competitive prices.