Mon: The earliest civilizations of Asia

The Mon people and their village.
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Close to the RESOTEL resort is a Mon village, having lived there for many years, the inhabitants have become a part of the resort just as much as the owners. Many of the villagers work in the hotel and both need each other. But who are these Mon villagers, where do they come from, and how did they end up here? Today we will be helping you get a little bit of a better understanding of this minority group.

The Mon are an ethnic group originating from Myanmar (also known as Burma) and mostly living in the Mon state in Myanmar, other regions in Myanmar, and at border locations of Myanmar and Thailand. They were also one of the earliest to live in Southeast Asia and often seen as the ones that spread Theravada Buddhism throughout south-east Asia. The Mon are also seen as having played a major source of influence on the culture of Burma.

History of the Mon

It is believed that the Mon were among the first of the people of Indochina. They founded some of the earlier civilizations in that time as well as spreading the Theravada Buddhism through the surrounding countries as said before. But around the year 1000 things started to go downhill for the Mon. There was constant pressure on the group with invasions coming from multiple directions. The Tai migrated from the north while the Khmer launched invasions from the east. This led to many Mon being killed, transported as captives, or having the safest option of having to adjust into new cultures.

This has gone on for the past 1000 years, with the Mon being suppressed by one kingdom till another. Often regaining more power after which another kingdom came along to take everything away again. While the Mon minority was slowly finding their place in Thailand, Burma had a lot going on in the country which led to many rebellions and just as many brutal stops to these rebellions. After the Burmese independence the Mon wanted self-governance and self-determination which they were refused after which they revolted and got crushed

Present-day situation of the Mon
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As of now, the Mon people still do not have their own country and instead live in small groups spread out across mainly Thailand and Myanmar, with smaller groups in countries such as America, Australia, and Canada. The Mon minority in Myanmar still struggling with political issues and repression, the Thailand-based minority group definitely have their struggles as well but many have found their way of fitting in and live their live with their village

To give you more information about the Mon villagers close to the resort, they all live together in a village close-by where the older ones work in the village or at the resorts while the children go to school and study at a Thai school and afterwards study at a Burmese school in their village to learn more of the alphabet and their culture. The number of people speaking the Mon language is lower than 2 million as of now and therefore many of the Mon people are putting a lot of emphasis on teaching their children the culture and the language.

The Culture of the Mon
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The Mon have their own language as well as their own alphabet, which is similar to the Burma alphabet. Another aspect of the culture of the Mon people is their spiritual dances, clothes, and music. The traditional Mon dance can be seen at our resort and is best described as a culturally educational dance combining the different aspects of the Mon culture.

Another interesting aspect of Mon is the use of Thanakha, a natural face powder which serves as sun protection and moisturizer. It has been used for over 2000 years in Myanmar history and is used by both male and female, although mostly by male.

We are glad to have been able to tell you something about the Mon people as they are an important part of our resort and we would not be able to service you without them.

 

 


The Beauty of the River Kwai & its history

History tourism is something almost everyone experienced, some in a holiday with a complete purpose of visiting heritage sights and learn about their history. While for others it might be a day excursion in-between other activities. But what is it exactly, when would you define it as History Tourism and what makes people so interested in it?

Our hotel, River Kwai RESOTEL, member of the SERENATA Hotels & Resort Group is located in the province of Kanchanaburi in Thailand. The resort is surrounded by historical sites such as the Hellfire Pass and the Bridge over the River Kwai. This combined with the beauty of the surroundings makes it a perfect heritage, culture and nature destination.

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However, Thailand is not the only country with many historical sights which attracts tourism. Think of the pyramids in Egypt, the Inca Citadel Machu Picchu in Peru and the memorials of the Second World War in Berlin. All these are in different moments in history on different locations and are still important places and activities that are known in the present day.

History is fascinating for many of us at it shows something about our ancestors as well as how we as a society got to where we are now. Many of the history destinations are also well known because of books and movies such as the movie ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’. This movie is one of the reasons the area became better known to the western part of the world. All in all historic areas are most definitely worth the visit as you learn much more about the world and get to understand many movies, series and books in which there were talks about these situations. Furthermore, most of these sites are candy for your eyes, with often beautiful and impressive sights and structures.

Broaden your horizon, look for the most interesting historic sites and start exploring, whether it is for a day or a 2 week long historic holiday. So, in the case you are looking for the next historic destination, let us suggest Kanchanaburi to you. The province is located in the west of Thailand and offers so much different choices. Whether it is for a day trip or a few days. The resort RESOTEL is located up the river close to the Hellfire Pass. The Hellfire Pass was an important part of the Thai-Burma Railways construction during the Second World War.

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For the true history lovers we have a special offer now as well, Pay your respects to the ones that passed away during the construction of the horrific Thai-Burma railway at the 25th of April on the ANZAC Day 2017

Arrive the 24th and stay at the RESOTEL Resort for a night followed by the Dawn Service in the Konyu Cutting (Also known as the Hellfire Pass) and commemorate the many Prisoners of War. Enjoy your stay in our hideaway River Kwai RESOTEL Resort. A cottage accommodation resort for comfort and adventure.

For more information about the tour program, click the following link:
https://www.riverkwairesotel.net/anzac


ANZAC day 2015 – Remembering the brave of WWII at the Hellfire pass in Kanchanaburi

The 25th of April was a day full of emotions and grief for many Australians and New Zealanders. It was the day were all the victims of wars and conflicts, Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC), were commemorated. Whereas the second world war took amongst others place in Thailand, Kanchanaburi received many visitors, coming together to commemorate the terrible events. For years is the slogan: ‘Lest we forget’.

 

What happened?

The Japanese were setting the rules in the WOII. They captured many Asian labors, first on voluntary bases though when nobody volunteered anymore the Japanese army started to arrest them. Besides the 200.000 Asians, more than 60.000 allied prisoners of war were put to work, mostly originating from Australia, New Zealand, America, France and The Netherlands. In miserable conditions they managed to construct the so-called Death-Railway while facing huge obstacles such as the bridge over the River Kwai but also the Hellfire pass, a mountain pass which they needed to cross.

 

Special guests in Kanchanaburi

Speaking was the Australian Senator Michaelia Cash, she took a moment to remember the terrible events taking place at Kanchanaburi. The Prisoners of war were remembered, who suffered during their work to construct a railway through Thailand into Myanmar amongst poor circumstances. One of the former prisoners of war and one of the fortunate who survived the war, is Neil Macpherson. The 92 years old man from Mindurah attended the ceremony in a wheelchair. He mentioned that war is a terrible thing that you will never forget, survivors of war will most likely take their experiences into their graves.

 

The Dawn Service – Hellfire Pass

Early in the morning, at 05.30 to be precise, the dawn service started at the Hellfire Pass, also: Konyu Cutting. The pass was located next to the Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum in the Kanchanaburi province. Most visitors wore sturdy shoes as the pass requires quite some stairs (therefore difficult to access for disabled people). Walking into the site would take approximately 20 min. After the ceremony of approximately 40 min. a traditional breakfast was served at the parking lot of the museum.

 

Memorial Wreath Laying Service – Kanchanaburi War Cemetery

The second session of the special day, the 25th of April, took place at the huge War Cemetery of Kanchanaburi. It was a warm day, many people used an umbrella to protect themselves for the sunshine. The ceremony started one hour later than in previous years at 11.00 AM. Due to the increasing amount of visitors, this time would be more convenient and it would give visitors more time to reach the destination. The ceremony took approximately 45 min. with New Zealand hosting this year’s event and providing visitors, especially elderly, with the required facilities for a comfortable ceremony.

 

Do you want to come next year?

Did you miss this year’s ANZAC day but do you want to attend the ceremony next year? No problem you are more than welcome. For transport possibilities and accommodations have a look at www.serenatahotels.com – owner of five special resorts along the river Kwai near the Hellfire Pass.

 

Many signs of remembrance are to be found along the Hellfire pass
Many signs of remembrance are to be found along the Hellfire pass

 

Pictures of joy, unfortunately was the reality different
Pictures of joy, unfortunately was the reality different

 

HellFire Pass Thailand
The name: ‘Hellfire Pass’ refers to the torches used by the men when they needed to work at night.

 


Best War Museums of Kanchanaburi | Museum of natural history

[Nederlands|Dutch]

The WOII was a horrifying happing all over the world. While Germany was concurring Europe, Japan invaded many Asian countries. Many prisoners of war were forced to work for the Japanese army to construct a railway connecting Thailand with Myanmar (Burma) to supply the Japanese army forces in Myanmar.

The railway meant death to many people and is therefore also called: the Death railway. Labor forces were volunteers or POWs (prisoners of war) from Japan and surrounding countries such as Laos, Cambodia, Thailand and more. Lastly also many western POWs suffered of the Japanese regime amongst others originated from Australia, England, America and Holland.

Still, you can see many remnants of the terrible happenings during WOII. There are lots of museums situated in the area, the three best museums are mentioned right here.

1. Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum
Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum

1. Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum
It is the closest museum to the Hellfire Pass and provides its visitors with lots of information about the terrifying events of the WOII. The museum was established with help of the Australian government. The modern museum provides its visitors with an audio tour implying personal stories of the men who survived the war. To finish the tour you can walk down to the Hellfire Pass (also known as Konyu Cutting) where you will see the remnants of the incredible work that the POWs completed.

2. JEATH War Museum | Bridge Over River Kwai
Bridge Over River Kwai

2. JEATH War Museum
The museum is situated inside the Wat Chai Chumphon temple close to the famous River Kwai Bridge, once built by the POWs. The museum, founded in 1977, will give its visitors a better insight on how the railway was built. JEATH represents the majority of the nationalities working on the railway, namely Japan, England, Australia (and America), Thailand and Holland. The museum consists of two sections, one part explains the constructions of the railway, secondly the living conditions of the POWs are visually displayed by means of reconstructed bamboo huts including old possessions of the prisoners like weapons, materials, maps. Lastly there are many pictures to see and stories to read.

3. Thai-Burma Railway Centre Museum
Thai-Burma Railway Centre Museum | War Cemetery

3. Thai-Burma Railway Centre Museum
It’s an interactive museum just on the opposite of the Allied War Cemetry in Kanchanaburi City. An informative museum about the railway and very personal. Rod Beattie started with the museum with mostly private financial support. He did lots of research and collected small personal possessions from former prisoners such as wallets and diaries. A part of the museum’s income is dedicated to stimulate further developments of the database of Allied POWs who died in the Asia-Pacific region and research into the geography of the railway.

As you might have read between the lines, there are many more traces of the happenings of the second World War. Located in Kanchanaburi are many cemeteries, the Hellfire Pass, River Kwai Bridge and old parts of the railway including trails which are still being used.


World’s smallest mammal

[Dutch]

The Kuhn Kitty bat is also called Bumblebee bat or Kitty’s hog-nosed bat because of its typical appearance. It is world smallest bat, weighs less than two grams and is just 3 centimeters long. This recently discovered animal is so-far only found in the caves of Kanchanaburi in West Thailand and in the Southeastern area of Myanmar.

Recently discovered
In 1973 the Thai biologist Mr. Kitty Thonglongya discovered this special species of bat in the caves of Thailand. He was working together with his British colleague John Hill when Thonglongya suddenly died. Hill decided to name the newly discovered animal after his friend by calling it the ‘Kuhn Kitty bat’ (which means sir Kitty in Thai). Soon though, people started to invent different names for the tiny guy like ‘Kitty’s hog-nosed bat’ because its nose looks like a pig-nose. Another frequently used name is the ‘Bumblebee bat’ because it is such a small animal.

Lazy guys
The completely harmless Bumblebee bats are rarely to be seen. The bats live far from the entrance of the cave. From what we know about their behavior we can say that they are pretty lazy as they come out just twice a day, half an hour in the evening and 20 minutes at dawn. Their food supply consists mostly of flies and spiders. Remarkable is the way how their catch their preys, often they are still flying when they eat their meal.

Endangered species
The population of the bats is very small and the slow reproduction of the species can form a problem in the future. Females of the Bumblebee bats are giving birth just once a year during the summer in April. For a long time their recently born youngster will stay attached to the belly of its mom. It takes quite some time before the wings of the super tiny bat are well-enough developed to fly. The slow reproduction of the spices can become a threat for the future as places were (and still are) disturbed by scientists, tourists, monks and new developments like the deforestation and a new pipeline being built from Thailand to Myanmar. However it is hard to tell to which extend these developments will affect the population of the species. Many caves – inhabited by the Bumblebee bat – are hard to access; therefore it is difficult to estimate their total population.

Living area
Not like other bat species, these bats are only seen in very small groups of sometimes just 10 bats. Larger groups are consisting of 100 to max. 500 Bumblebee bats. The bats are to be found in limestone caves mostly located close to the river, as it provides the tiny bats with many insects. They are also living in the forests but it is very difficult to spot them there. So-far the tiny bat is spotted in Kanchanaburi, the West of Thailand and since 2001 the bat is also discovered in a Southeast region of Myanmar. In Thailand’s Bumblebee bats are living in the caves along the river Kwai and in the Sai Yok National Park. If you want to see this little guy you may be lucky at the Lawa Cave near the river Kwai. Close by accommodations are the River Kwai Resotel (a stylish bungalow resort) or the Float House (luxurious floating on the river Kwai). For more information and other resorts – close to the Sai Yok National Park and Lawa Cave – check out the website: www.serenatahotels.com. Last but not least, do not forget to bring a torch to observe these special creatures!

Lawa Cave Kanchanaburi
World’s smallest and friendly bats in the Lawa Cave
Kitti Hog-nosed Bats Kanchanaburi
Looks scary? The Bumblebee bat is completely harmless

All about THAI FRUITS

Thailand Dragon Fruits
Thailand Dragon Fruits

Tasty, Juicy and Pulpy Fruits in Thailand.

There are plenty of Thai fruits in Thailand. One of the best taste and variety is found here. People from around the world are attracted towards this taste of juicy, pulpy Thai Fruits. Here, we explore some of important facts on fruits in Thailand:-

ORANGE | Thai name: SOM

Oranges in Thailand
Oranges in Thailand

Thai oranges are among the juiciest of oranges with a yellowish-green peel and bright orange flesh; the segments are generally eaten fresh or squeezed for juice. The overall season for Thai oranges is September through November, although they can be enjoyed year-around.

APPLE | Thai name: A-PUN

Apple in Thailand
Apple in Thailand

Apples are not readily associated with the tropics, yet the fruit is widely popular. Several tropical Asian countries have planted apples in cooler hilly areas and it is possible nevertheless to find a tasty crisp apple in Asia. The Thai name for apples is adopted from the English word but pronounced “a-pun”.

ROSE APPLE | Thai name: CHOM-PU

Rose Apple in Thailand
Rose Apple in Thailand

Rose apples generally have only a faint flavor with a hint of sweetness and are prized mainly for their crisp juiciness. Pleasant to bit into raw, they also go well in all types of salads. In Thailand, the rose apple is commonly used in preserves.

BANANA | Thai name: KLUAY

Banana in Thailand
Banana in Thailand

In Thailand, bananas come in a range of sizes, shapes, skin colors and flavors. The banana is native to the region and can be found growing wild on hillsides and in secondary forests. Thai’s utilize not only the fruit, but eat the banana flower with “Phad Thai”, and use banana leaves as an all-purpose wrapping for steamed or baked food and as a disposable plate.

DRAGON FRUIT | Thai name: GAO MUNG GORN

Thailand Dragon Fruits
Thailand Dragon Fruits

Dragon fruit is a beautiful fruit grown in Southeast Asia, Mexico, Central and South America, and Israel. The plant is actually a type of cactus, and the fruit comes in 3 colors: 2 have pink skin, but with different colored flesh (one white, the other red), while another type is yellow with white flesh.
Dragon fruit is a low calories and offers numerous nutrients, including Vitamin C, phosphorus, calcium, plus fiber and antioxidants. Dragon fruit tastes wonderful, sweet and crunchy, with a flavor that’s like a cross between kiwi and pear.

JUJUBE | Thai name: PUT-SHAR

Thailand Jujube - Sweet and Sour Thai Fruit
Thailand Jujube – Sweet and Sour Thai Fruit

Jujube is varying from round to elongate and from cherry-size to plum-size depending on cultivar. It has a thin, edible skin surrounding whitish flesh of sweet, agreeable flavor. The fruit can be eaten after it becomes wrinkled, but most people prefer them during the interval between the yellow-green stage and the full red stage. Tests in Russia indicate a very high vitamin C.

LANSIUM DOMESTICUM PELLEG | Thai name: LANGSAT / LONGKONG

LANSIUM DOMESTICUM-PELLEG THAI FRUIT
LANSIUM DOMESTICUM-PELLEG THAI FRUIT

The fruit is grown in southern Thailand particularly in areas of high humidity i.e. Narathiwat, Nakornsrithamarat, Surat-Thani, Chumporn. It appears in clusters as small round balls with soft pale yellow skin inside the flesh is smoky white with a sweet taste. It is rich in calcium, phosphorus, potassium, iron and vitamin B1 B2 and C. Season of Longkong in Thailand April – November.


Best touristic attractions in Kanchanaburi

Kanchanaburi is one of the best places to have a break. This is near Bangkok, the capital, and it proposes many interesting touristic attractions while offering pleasant landscapes.
The Bridge over the River Kwai is one of the most famous attractions in Kanchanaburi. Built by prisoners of war, it is part of the Death Railway. It has been destroyed during WWII and rebuilt afterwards, but the curved spans are still the original ones.

Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum is also a must do. This is the name given to a part of the Death Railway built by prisoners. Basically, this is a long portion of rock dug by POWs. The name comes from the idea of a similarity between the scene of prisoners working with torches at night and hell.

The JEATH War Museum is about the construction of the Death Railway as well. It presents objects that belonged to prisoners such as tools, maps and weapons. Each letter of JEATH is representing a nationality involved: Japan, England, Australia & America, Thailand and Holland.

view-kanchanaburi
View Kanchanaburi – The best place of Thailand & Tourist Destination.

Then, quite a lot of attractions could be interesting and pleasant in surroundings such as Mangkorn Thong, Ban Kao, Prasat Muang Singh Historical Park, Tham Keng Lawa, Three Pagodas Pass, Erawan Waterfalls and so much more.


Resotel – The Best of Kanchanaburi Hotels

RIVER KWAI RESOTEL, River Kwai, Kanchanaburi.

Resotel
Resotel – The Best of Kanchanaburi Hotels & Resort.

The River Kwai Resotel – Kanchanaburi Hotels & Resort (ริเวอร์ แคว รีโซเทล) offers you a perfect blend of serenity, comfort and adventure. It is located in the marvelous backdrop of stunning greenery and the history- charged river Kwai and offers every imaginable kind of comfort and at the same time is the perfect home base to discover the Kanchanaburi area with all its hidden treasures. The area became famous through Pierre Boulle’s novel “The Bridge on the River Kwai” and the corresponding movie by David Lean, which tell the tragic yet fascinating story around the construction of two bridges crossing the river. One of which can still be visited today.

The resort provides 93 individual chalets; its luxurious equipped rooms convey the lively and stunning atmosphere of the jungle with its fragrance, colors and feel whilst ensuring all modern conveniences. The cozy chalets with thatch-covered roofs are furnished with beautiful wooden furniture, comfortable beds, are equipped with a individually adjustable air-conditioning and provide a luxurious en suite bathroom and terrace for your utmost comfort.

Take a swim in the beautiful turquoise pool, relax with one of the soothing herbal treatments or relax on the sun deck on the comfortable daybeds with a stunning view on the river. For those more adventurous guests we offer fascinating excursions alongside the river.

You too can experience “a slice of paradise” as the River Kwai Resotel was fondly called by one of the guests. The resort guarantees an exceptional experience in the heart of the jungle along the River Kwai.

River Kwai RESOTEL
55 Moo 5 Tambol Wangkrajae, Amphur Saiyoke,
Kanchanaburi 71150, Thailand
Tel: +66 (2) 642 5497 (Office)
Call resort: +66(0)81 734 5238
Email: info@riverkwairesotel.net
Website : http://www.RiverKwaiRESOTEL.net


River Kwai Resotel

Kanchanaburi Hotels
Resotel – Kanchanaburi Hotels on the River Kwai in middle of nature and its beauty

River Kwai Resotel (ริเวอร์ แคว รีโซเทล), a marvelous natural resort in Kanchanaburi, Invites you to a passionate nature that surround by beautiful greenery mountains, pleasant historical river – Kwai noi and imposing rocky cliffs. For you to impressive experience nature closely with rooms designed in a Tropical Chalet is nestled amidst the lush green jungle that can be appreciated elegant scenery of nature surrounding the resort. We offer a privacy and comfort with the fully equipped rooms such as air conditioning, TV, refrigerator, wardrobe and en-suite bathrooms with hot shower and bathtub.

Fulfill your holiday with delicious taste authentic of Thai and international cuisine at the restaurant, overlooking the scenery of lush hilly plantation and the historical Kwai noi river. Delighted your romantic night dinner with live songs by professional singer. Enjoyment with free-form pool surrounded by the warmth of nature, Thai traditional massage. And activities to make your holiday relaxed than ever with a little adventure such as canoeing on the river kwai, mountain bike or river kwai kayak. Moreover, if you want to keep the chill out atmosphere, bamboo rafting to the sides of the river is the best choice to enjoy. Or walking and visiting Mon tribal village and Lawa cave are event not to be missed. Let’s make your holiday experience filled with natural beauty that surrounds you.

River Kwai RESOTEL, ที่พักกาญจนบุรี
55 Moo 5 Tambol Wangkrajae, Amphur Saiyoke,
Kanchanaburi 71150, Thailand
Tel: +66 (2) 642 5497 (Office)
Call resort: +66(0)81 734 5238
Email: info@riverkwairesotel.net
Website : http://www.RiverKwaiRESOTEL.net