|Locale||Bangkok, Samut Sakhon Province and Samut Songkhram Province|
|Dates of operation||1904–Present|
|Track gauge||1,000 mm (3 ft 3+3⁄8 in) (Metre gauge)|
|Electrification||600 V DC overhead line (between 1926 and 1955)|
|Length||66.9 kilometres (41.6 mi)|
The Maeklong Railway (also known as the Mae Klong Railway) is a 1,000 mm (3 ft 3+3⁄8 in) (metre gauge) railway that runs for nearly 67 kilometres (42 mi) between Wongwian Yai, Bangkok, and Samut Songkhram in central Thailand. The line consists of two sections: the eastern Mahachai Line, which runs between Samut Sakhon and Wongwian Yai with 18 stations, and the Ban Laem Line, which runs between Samut Sakhon and Samut Songkhram with 15 stations. The two stretches are separated by the Tha Chin River at Samut Sakhon. The only connection between the stations on the opposite sides of the river is by boat.
The Mae Klong Railway was built in two separate stages. The Tachin Railway Ltd, founded in 1901 with a concession from the crown of Thailand to construct a line to Samut Sakhon from Bangkok, built the 33 kilometer Mahachai Line; it opened in 1904 with eight stations. A year later, The Maeklong Railway Company opened the 34 kilometer Ban Laem Line, using three steam locomotives. The lines merged in 1907 to form the Maeklong Railway Ltd. It was originally opened as a goods line, transporting produce from the fishing ports of Samut Sakhon and Samut Songkram to the Bangkok markets. The Government of Thailand purchased the now-merged company in 1926 and electrified the eastern section, turning it into an interurban tramway. The Thai military later gained control of the railway in 1942, during World War II, and the line was brought under the control of the State Railway of Thailand in 1952 and fully merged into it by 1955. During this period of merger, the electrification was removed from the eastern section, with steam-hauled and later diesel-hauled trains replacing the old tramcars. In 1961 the line's original terminus at Khlong San was closed and replaced with a bus stop, to ease traffic congestion in Bangkok, with Wongwian Yai becoming the new terminus.
The Maeklong Railway's first trains were hauled by three 0-4-2T wood-burning tank engines, purchased from Krauss Locomotive Works in 1903 and 1906. Consists of electric tramcars worked passenger services on the eastern section of the line from about 1927 up until the line's de-electrification in 1955, initially being replaced with conventional trains hauled by two Henschel 4-6-2 steam engines. A pair of Henschel 440hp 2-6-2 diesel locomotives were introduced not long after in 1957, but these were not regarded as a success; the railway did not retire steam traction until 1971, when the older but more reliable Sulzer diesels, among the first used by the SRT, were cascaded down to the Maeklong Railway with the arrival of more modern locomotives on the main network. Since at least 1975, the Maeklong Railway has been operated by relatively modern diesel multiple unit trains.
The railway became famous for its route through the Maeklong Railway Market, nicknamed (Thai: ตลาดร่มหุบ; RTGS: Talat Rom Hup), meaning the "umbrella pulldown market". It is one of the largest fresh seafood markets in Thailand, and is centred on the Maeklong Railway's track. Whenever a train approaches, the awnings and shop fronts are moved back from the rails, to be replaced once the train has passed.
Seventeen trains run daily in each direction between Samut Sakhon and Wongwian Yai. Four trains run daily between Samut Sakhon and Samut Songkhram. The railway is one of the slowest in Thailand, and the average speed for the whole line is only 30 km/hr. There are no signals on the line.
|English Name||Thai Name||Code||Distance
|Pak Khlong San||ปากคลองสาน||-1.90||Closed since 1961||Bangkok|
|Khlong Ton Sai||คลองต้นไทร||5004||3.35||Halt||ไซ.|
|Bang Bon||บางบอน||5009||9.76 กม.||Halt||าา.|
|Phrom Daen||พรมแดน||5014||17.29||Halt||พแ.||Bangkok Samut Sakhon|
|Thung Si Thong||ทุ่งสีทอง||5034||18.76||Halt||ที.||Samut Sakhon|
|Bang Nam Chuet||บางน้ำจืด||5015||19.97||Halt||นจ.|
|Maha Chai||มหาชัย||5018||31.22 กม.||1||ชั.|
|Tha Chin River|
|Ban Laem||บ้านแหลม||5019||0.18||3||แห.||Samut Sakhon|
|Ban Chi Phakhao||บ้านชีผ้าขาว||5021||3.89||Halt||ผา.|
|Khlong Nok Lek||คลองนกเล็ก||5035||5.95||Halt||ลเ.|
|Bang Si Kot||บางสีคต||5022||6.90||Halt||บี.|
|Ban Na Khwang||บ้านนาขวาง||5027||17.94||Halt||บ้.|
|Ban Na Khok||บ้านนาโคก||5028||19.97||Halt||าโ.|
|Lad Yai||ลาดใหญ่||5030||27.66||Halt||ลญ.||Samut Songkhram|
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- Cunningham, Susan. "The Market Where a Train Runs Through". Southeast Asia Traveler. Retrieved 12 Mar 2013.
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- "SRT: The Maeklong line and Maeklong railway market". Thai Mass Transport Systems. Archived from the original on 28 November 2012. Retrieved 12 Mar 2013.
- Rail transport in Thailand
- State Railway of Thailand
- Molli railway, another narrow-gauge railway notable for street-running