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The Mae Klong express

Mae Klong Train Market..................(2678.jpg)

When you first look at this picture, it just looks like a busy market in Thailand. Look closely and you'll see that people are walking and sitting on train tracks. Old, unused train tracks – fair enough… Except that they aren't. The Mae Klong Market sits on one of the most unusual functioning tracks in the world.

Mae Klong Train Market..................(2679.jpg)

The Mahachai Shortline train starts out at Wong Wian Yai then runs through the countryside until it comes to a stop at the Ta Chin river. Since there's no bridge, passengers have to get out and take a ferry to the other side, where they can jump on another train.

Market train............................(2828.jpg)

Then, when it reaches Samut Songkhram (more commonly known as Mae Klong), to get to the station, it runs through this busy street market, where vendors have to yank their stalls out of the way before the train passes through. And this doesn't just happen once every blue moon – vendors go through this several times a day. It's a great tourist attraction, but you can't help thinking they must lose a lot of produce that way… RM

Image (middle): Martin Reed

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