Bang Sue Railway Cemetery 3

Bang Sue Railway Cemetery

Bang Sue Railway Cemetery is located deep within a vast tract of land on the northwest side of Bangkok owned by the State Railway of Thailand. This land is home to Phahonyothin freight yard, the largest in Thailand, as well as numerous maintenance depots, engine shops, and other railway facilities. It is also the future site of Bang Sue Grand Station, set to be the largest railway station in Southeast Asia when construction is completed in the coming years. For decades the train cemetery hidden within these grounds has been known to urban explorers, so I decided to swing by and take a look while visiting in 2019.

Bang Sue Railway Cemetery 1
Many of Thailand’s derelict Herschel DH 1200 diesel-hydraulic locomotives are stored here.
Bang Sue Railway Cemetery 2
Herschel DH 1200 locomotives are readily identifiable by a number from 3001 to 3027.
Inside a Derelict Train in Bang Sue
Inside one of many locomotives abandoned at the Bang Sue Railway Cemetery.

From the many posts I’ve browsed online it sounds as if accessing the site wasn’t so difficult in previous years. The security guards are occasionally amenable to responsible photographers perusing the railyard, or so I’ve heard. I wasn’t entirely sure how to get in so I just drove around on a rented scooter, navigating by instinct. Eventually I reached a muddy construction site beneath towering concrete columns, an elevated railway of the future. Here I continued on foot, wandered through a rundown warehouse, and found myself on the edge of railyard populated by an assortment of rusty engines, passenger carriages, and derelict tankers.

Engine Room of a Derelict Train in Bang Sue
Presumably a diesel-hydraulic engine.
Through the Window in Bang Sue
Peering through a broken window at a diesel engine that might be the oldest on the lot: RSR 601, built by Frichs in Aarhus, Denmark, in 1931.
Bang Sue Railway Cemetery 3
Two different locomotives stacked one after the other.
Bang Sue Railway Cemetery 4
An unusual sight in the railyard: phuang malai, a Thai floral garland.
Bang Sue Railway Cemetery 5
The train cemetery is immediately adjacent to active railway lines. That’s a General Electric GE UM12C whizzing by.
From the Souterrn End of Bang Sue Railway Cemetery
Tankers and passenger cars.

Although I am no train expert I did a little legwork to identify a few of the locomotives visible in these pictures. Several were made in America by the Davenport Locomotive Works prior to their dissolution in 1956; many of the others are from a series of more than two dozen Herschel DH 1200 diesel-hydraulic locomotives commissioned in the early 1960s1.

Yellow Engine at Bang Sue Railway Cemetery
Davenport 1000 HP, an American locomotive dating back to the 1950s.
Another Yellow Engine in Bang Sue
An older Davenport locomotive; this one is from the 500 HP series.
Train 580
The same Davenport 1000 HP as before, but in black-and-white this time.
Rusty Train in Bang Sue
Maintenance Depot at Bang Sue Railway Cemetery
Maintenance bays at the north end of the railway cemetery are now mostly used for organizing and processing scrap metal.

Escaping from the Bang Sue Railway Cemetery proved to be another new adventure: my scooter got stuck in the deep mud of the construction site on the way out. Not knowing what else to do, I used all my strength to try and pull it from the muck, to no avail. Suddenly I saw a pair of hands reach into view—a construction worker had noticed my struggles and came over to help! Soon we wrested the scooter from the mire and I was off, no questions asked about my presence on this worksite, just a parting smile and a friendly wave.

Bang Sue Grand Station Construction Site 1
The railway cemetery was surrounded by a muddy construction site.
Bang Sue Grand Station Construction Site 2
Bang Sue Grand Station Construction Site 3

Naturally this site has already been well-documented in English and Thai. Dax Ward published the most widely known story about this railyard, and you can find more photos from some backpackers here. You may also have some luck searching for the name of this place in Thai (สุสานรถไฟบางซื่อ). But if you wish to visit be forewarned: construction on the new station may be so far advanced that access to the site won’t be possible!

  1. Information about these engines is scant, but this page provided some clues. 


  1. That unidentifiable engine is Frichs 601 made in Aarhus, Denmark in 1936. What a shame of its state considering it’s a diesel that’s older than many steam locomotives around

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