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Thailand: the land of smiles

Due to the economic growth of the past several years Thailand is now one of the more developed countries in South East Asia. This does not mean that the strong cultural values of the country have been influenced. Wherever you are in Thailand, you will feel a cultural atmosphere that still feels the same. This means that despite the economic progress culture has always been preserved. Thailand is a unique location, especially BANGKOK, the gateway for travelers to South East Asia. In Bangkok you will experience a mix of cultures and people from all the surrounding continents, a true metropolis!

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As a holiday destination, Thailand offers a successful combination of rich (cultural) history, a large variety of sights and highlights, good infrastructure, excellent and numerous beaches, fantastic hotels, delicious cuisine, great natural landscape, good value for money. All this is complemented by perhaps the most important and most attracting element; the Thai hospitality, famous for its honest and sincere service. Because of this, Thailand has become a holiday destination travelers want to travel back to. Welcome back instead of a first welcome is not unfamiliar for service staff in hotels! 

Facts & Figures:

  • Population: 65 million
  • Capital: Bangkok (8,000,000 registered inhabitants)
  • Language: Thai
  • Currency: Thai Baht (almost all ATMs)
  • Religion: Buddhist
  • Area: 513,000 square kilometers (the size of France)
  • Climate: Tropical

How and when
The largest amount of travelers to South East Asia first fly to Bangkok. From Bangkok you can easy travel to Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Myanmar. In Thailand you can get a visa on arrival for a stay of 30 days. If you want to stay longer, you have to apply for a visa at the Thai embassy in your country. The best time to come to Thailand is from October till March. The temperature is then warm with a nice cool breeze. The raining season is from June till September. In this period you can expect heavy rainfalls, but they do not last long. Around New Year it can even be cold in northern of Thailand, so do not forget a sweater if you are traveling in this period to northern Thailand. April and May are the hottest month of the year in Thailand.

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Culture and traditions
The last few years, Thailand experienced a large economic growth and tourism is one of the main reason for this. Nevertheless it did not affect the Thai culture. On the contrary; wherever you come in Thailand, you will experience the same atmosphere as years before. Approximately 95% of the Thai population is Buddhist. Around 4% from the population is Muslim and this group is mostly representative in southern Thailand to the border with Muslim country Malaysia. Respect for others and acceptance ability is central to the Thai culture.

Bangkok and central Thailand
Bangkok offers everything you can expect of a Asia metropolis; thousands of restaurants, culture highlights, many shopping areas and a huge amount of hotels. Western travelers sometimes will have a culture shock while arriving in Bangkok, because of the crowds and hectic combined with a pressing warmth. If you surrender yourself to the bustle, Bangkok is a place to fall in love with.

Not far from Bangkok, there are many destinations which you can easy travel to with VisitThailand.travel. On two hours driving from Bangkok, you can visit Kanchanaburi. A place that is well-known because of the historic sightseeing of World War II, such as the Bridge over the River Kwai. Also 2 hours from Bangkok, you can find Hua Hin and Cha-am. Here you will find nice beaches combined with luxurious resorts. A very cozy island nearby central Thailand is Koh Samet. This is a small tropical island of 4 hours drive from Bangkok.

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Northern Thailand
Northern Thailand is also one of traveler’s favorite destinations. Here you will experience ancient Thailand with the northern Thai capital Chiang Mai as central area. The golden triangle, where you can be in Myanmar, Laos and Thailand in one step, is one of the highlights of northern Thailand. Together with the small villages in these areas, you will experience the Thai culture. VisitThailand.travel offers a carefully selections of (short) programs in northern Thailand.

Beaches
Probably the most famous well-known areas in Thailand are in the south, with the blessed white beaches. Palm trees, clear blue water for excellent diving experience and small restaurants at the beach. These are all small elements that will make your stay unforgettable. Most popular islands are Phuket Krabi, Koh Phi Phi, Koh Lanta, Koh Samui and Koh Samet. Here you will find wonderful beaches with nice beaches, nightlife, a wide variety of restaurants and shops. Less crowded beach destinations are Koh Phangang en Koh Chang. These islands have less hotels and facilities for tourists, but instead you will have more quiet beaches en less tourists.

 
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