Thailand or officially the Kingdom of Thailand is a state in Southeast Asia. On the east, it borders Laos and Cambodia, on the west it borders Myanmar and on the south Malaysia. The capital city of the Kingdom is Bangkok.
There are two climatic zones in Thailand: tropical (on the north) and monsoon tropical (on the south and southeast). The average temperature in December is +22°C and in July the temperature can be as high as +30°C. The best time for visiting Thailand depends on the region. The best time for traveling to Phuket, Pattaya or mountain areas is from October to April. Go to Samui from March to June or in August and September. The tourist season in Bangkok lasts from April to August.
The main religion in Thailand is Buddhism. The official language is Thai.
Those who like the spend time on the beach should choose the wonderful beaches of Pattaya, Rayong, Sheraton Krabi Beach, Samui and Phuket, Lanta, Phi Phi and Hua Hin. The Phuket island is also famous for its amazing nature. Visit the Phuket Pearl Farm and the Bangkok Snake Farm, Phuket Butterfly Garden and Insect World, Khao Lak-Lam Ru National Park, Thai village, amusement park Mu Ko Ang Thong National Marine Park and the islands Koh Chang, Phi Phi, and Phuket. In Kanchanaburi, the travelers will see reserves and natural parks.
Phang Nga Province is known among the fans of rafting. The best place for snorkeling and diving is the Similan Islands. The Turtle Island Koh Tao has everything for the fascinating diving.
The shopping tours are arranged to Bangkok, Pattaya, Ayuthaya, and Sukhothai.
Flight is the most comfortable and convenient way to get to Thailand.
The Russian tourists can take direct flights from Moscow to Thailand offered by Aeroflot and Thai Airways. Transaero offers flights from Moscow to Phuket.
Air Astana, IUA and Uzbekistan Airways offer flights from Almaty, Kiev, and Tashkent.
The European tourists can also take direct flights or transit flights with a stop in Beijing, Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Doha.
There is a regular train between Bangkok and Butterworth (Malaysia).
The tourists from CIS and EU countries do not need a visa to travel to Thailand. This rule is applicable in case a tourist stays in the country for 30 days and less.
When entering the country the tourists should have a Migration Card and a valid international passport.
The citizens of Ukraine and Kazakhstan can obtain a visa on arrival which will be valid for 15 days. The citizens of other countries must obtain a visa beforehand.
If imported and exported money exceeds 20.000 US dollars or 50.000 THB, the money must be declared.
The travelers can bring in Thailand:
- alcohol and tobacco;
- personal belongings (the total cost must not exceed 80.000 THB).
It is prohibited to import goods made of shells, fur or skin of rare animals, fighting breeds of dogs.
Import of drugs is severe punished (death penalty or life imprisonment).
The tourists are not allowed to export:
- goods made of shells, fur or skin of rare animals;
- unprocessed corals;
- items with historical or cultural value;
- Buddha figurines exceeding 13 cm.
Thai cuisine is based on the contrast of flavors. The majority of traditional dishes contain three main ingredients such as rice, chili sauce and coconut water.
We recommend you trying Khao Phat (rice with crabs), Prieo vaan (sour and sweet rice), Phat Prik Bay Kra Phao (rice casserole with spices), Nam Man Hoy (rice with oyster sauce), Khao Phat Khee Mao (savory rice with seafood and basil) or Khao Nam-prik Long Ruea (savory rice with shrimps). Being in Thailand, you cannot miss the chance to try a rice soup Khao Tom.
The following dishes gained great popularity: Naam (noodles boiled in meat broth), Mi Krop (fried noodles with sweet and sour sauce), Phai Tai (fried noodles with shrimp sauce), Khamon Ying and Yam Woon Sen.
No meal in Thailand goes without a soup. Try Ton Yam Kung (sour shrimp soup) and Tom Kha Kai (chicken and coconut soup).
The best Thai dishes are Som Tam (hot salad with paw paw and crab), Laap (hot fish salad) and Pla Tu (mackerel with lemongrass and herbs).
Meat dishes are not prepared very often in Thailand. But still you can try the dish Gai Yang (roast chicken or duck), Larb (sour meat salad), duck Moo Daeng and Khao Man Kai (chicken stew with coconut water).
If you crave for something sweet, treat yourself to exotic Thai fruits (longan, lychee, tamarind, and durian), rice puddings and ice-cream. Thai dessert Foi Thong and coconut jelly Khanom Luuk Chup are very popular among the tourists.
The locals like such drinks as Naam Yen (cold water with lemongrass) and Naam Kgan (refreshing juice). People in Thailand often add some salt to fruit juices. As for alcoholic drinks, we recommend beer Bia, brandy Lao and whiskey Mekong.
The national currency in Thailand is Baht (THB). In circulation are the bank notes from 10 to 1.000 bahts, plastic bank notes and coins.
We recommend exchanging currency at banks, airports and authorized exchange offices. Try to avoid exchanging currency in hotels because of high rates. The exchange rate in Thailand varies depending on the nominal value, the higher the value, the higher the rate.
On the resorts, it is very convenient to pay with traveler’s checks. International credit cards are accepted almost everywhere. Be aware of the ATM transaction fees.
In Thailand, there is the Tax-Free system. To refund VAT, the tourists need:
- to make a purchase in one store or mall during a day of the total cost 5.000 bahts;
- to obtain the receipt on the name of one person.
The receipts must be given to the Customs officers at the airport. VAT is refunded in cash.
Details of interest
A long-awaited holiday is coming and soon you will go to exotic Thailand. Where to go, what to see and what souvenirs to buy? Triplook is here to help you!
Customs and traditions of Thailand
The local people are known for their generosity and hospitality. The Thais deeply respect the social hierarchy and they are very well aware of the importance of their culture. Never touch the head of a Thai without his or her permission and never point to something with your foot.
Sightseeing in Thailand
Start you travel with the capital city Bangkok. There you will see a magnificent Grand Palace, huge Ceremonial swing Lak Muang and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. Religious people should visit the Temple of Dawn, Wat Benchamabophit and the large temple complex Wat Pho Temple of Reclining Buddha with a giant statue of lying Buddha. The historical and cultural monuments are kept in the Bangkok national Museum, National Science Museum, National Theater, and the Bangkok Silk Museum. In the suburbs of Bangkok, anyone has a chance to see the lost capital city Siam, the ancient ruins of Ayutthaya in the Ayutthaya Historical park. In Nakhon Path, there is the largest Buddha statue (127 meters). Have a walk in the Bangkok Rose Garden, Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo and Park Muang Boran.
The historical cities Ayutthaya and Sukhothai are the UNESCO sites.
Go to Pattaya for calm and fuss-free rest. Visit the crocodile farm, Nong Nooch Tropical Garden and take a picture of the tigers in Sriracha Tiger Zoo.
The fans of ecological tourism will be delighted by the trip to the coral island Koh Lan and excursion to the Khmer temples and Wat Yan Temple. In the famous Pattaya Elephant Village, everyone can try traditional Thai cuisine and ride the elephants in the jungles.
The archaeological monument Ban Chiang in the Udon Thani Province is inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
A trip to Phuket will be an unforgettable experience. Pearl and snake farms, butterfly and monkey gardens, Aquarium & Marine Biological Research Centre, Khao Lak Natural Park. In the Thai village, a traditional show is performed in the Orchard Garden. The tourists will be impressed by the amusement park Fanta Sea and James Bond Island.
Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai Forest Complex is a UNESCO site.
Samui Island attracts all those who love to spend their time on the beach. There is Chaweng Beach, Lamai Beach, and Maenam Beach. The tourists can go to see the Hin Ta and Hin Yai Rocks, go to the Waterfall Namtok, visit the oceanarium, crocodile farm and a Tiger Castle. On the island, there are several religious sites such as the Buddhist temple Wat Khunaram Koh Samui with the Mummified monk Koh Samui, the Laughing Buddha Statue and the Laem Sor Pagoda. If you like active sports, head to the Koh Tao island, Phangan Island and visit the National Park Moo Kho Ang Thong.
Souvenirs in Thailand
- Legendary green Thai porcelain, silver Niello, and beautiful pottery are sold in Chiang Mai.
- Silk clothes are sold in Surin and Korat.
- Souvenir elephants, masks and Thai souvenir plates can be bought on Samui.
- Crocodile leather goods (brief-cases, shoes), medications with snakes venom can be found in any city.
- Buy spices, sweets with durian and tamarind, alcoholic beverages with scorpions and cobras, and coconut oil in Pattaya.
- In Bangkok, the tourists will find teakwood souvenirs and furniture, and jewelry.