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Thailand

Thailand
  • Ko Pha Ngan island featured prominently in Alex Garland’s 1996 novel The Beach and is also mentioned in the song Magick by the new rave band Klaxons’ (but probably[original research?] more as a reference to the 1996 novel The Beach than the island itself).The infamous Full Moon Party, which often involves electronic music, occurs on Ko Pha Ngan every full moon of the month.
  • Ko Tao island is well known for scuba diving and snorkeling. Also offers some hiking, rock climbing and bouldering. The most popular place for tourists is Sairee on the West coast, which has a white sandy beach of 1.7 km interrupted only by a few huge boulders and a scattering of medium budget resorts and restaurants. Chalok Baan Khao, to the south of the island is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative for those wishing to escape the crowds. A multitude of beautiful granite boulders, which nestle both in the forests and on the beaches of Ko Tao, attract a growing number of climbers who visit each year to enjoy the adventurous aspect of their sport.
  • Ko Chang too is one of Thailand’s most beautiful islands with some white sandy beaches, some half deserted. Some of the beaches are rocky in parts though so it doesn’t have ideal swimming beaches like Phuket. The island is also home to a wide range of wildlife, including a good selection of birds, snakes, deer and a number of elephants. The island and its vicinity are great places for snorkeling, diving and jungle hiking.
  • Chiang Mai has a large and famous night bazaar for arts, handicrafts, and imported products of all descriptions, and a number of large, well-appointed modern shopping centres. The night bazaar alone sprawls along several city blocks along footpaths, inside buildings and temple grounds, and in open squares. A handicraft and food market opens every Sunday afternoon till late on Rachadamnoen Road, the main street in the historical centre, which is closed to motorised traffic.
  • Visitors seeking bargains can also find a thriving second hand “Thieves” market with lots of interesting stalls under shady trees across the river to the east of the city beginning at the intersection of Kaeo Nawarat and Ratanakosin Roads.
  • Thai massage: The back streets and main thoroughfares of Chiang Mai have an abundance and variety of massage parlours which offer anything from quick, simple, face and foot massages, to month-long courses in the art of Thai massage.
  • The Golden Triangle is in Chiang Rai Province, in the far north of Thailand. The English name comes from the meeting of Laos, Myanmar and Thailand here, but to the locals it’s Sop Ruak, since this is where the Mekong meets the Ruak River. The landscape is hilly, divided by the Ruak River that flows into the Mekong (Mae Khong) River. These rivers form a natural boundary between the three countries Laos (to the east of the Mekong), Myanmar (to the north of the Ruak), and Thailand (to the west of the Mae Khong). Most people seem to come here on guided bus tours. For independent travelers, blue songthaews run through the Golden Triangle from Mae Sai (45 min, 40 baht) to Chiang Saen (15 min, 20 baht) and back again every 20 minutes or so until around 15:00. If you miss the last songthaew, you will be at the mercy of the tuk-tuk and motorcycle taxi drivers that will charge around 70 baht for the 10km trip from the Golden Triangle to Chiang Saen.
  • Thai cuisine blends five fundamental tastes: sweet, spicy, sour, bitter and salty. Some common ingredients used in Thai cuisine include garlic, chillies, lime juice, lemon grass, and fish sauce. The staple food in Thailand is rice, particularly jasmine variety rice (also known as Hom Mali rice) which is included in almost every meal. Thailand is the world’s largest exporter of rice, and Thais domestically consume over 100 kg of milled rice per person per year.
  • The traditional Thai greeting, the wai, is generally offered first by the younger of the two people meeting, with their hands pressed together, fingertips pointing upwards as the head is bowed to touch their face to the hands, usually coinciding with the spoken word “Sawasdee khrap” for male speakers, and “Sawasdee ka” for females. The elder then is to respond afterwards in the same way.
  • The Ayutthaya historical park covers the ruins of the old city of Ayutthaya, Thailand, which was founded by King Ramathibodi I in 1350 and was the capital of the country until its destruction by the Burmese army in 1767. In 1969 the Fine Arts Department began with renovations of the ruins, which became more serious after it was declared a historical park in 1976. The park was declared a UNESCO World heritage site in 1991. According to “Tourism Asia,” [1] thirty-three monarchs including King Rama IV governed from Ayutthaya.
  • Try to talk to a buddhist monk. Most refrain from communicating with the world. However, if you’re lucky, you’ll learn a lot about Thailand lifestyle and philosophy.

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