Introducing the stunning land of smiles…
Thailand is a country unlike any other. It’s a place of extremes, a place of beauty and a place where anything is possible. Here, you will find thriving metropolises interspersed with ancient gold-laden temples; high-end boutiques and technology stores just moments away from cheap-as-chips markets. Thailand is equal parts colourful, energetic, luxurious and picturesque. Whether you’re into hot food, elephants, rich culture and history, perfect beaches, lush jungles, shops, bars, pampering or water sports, there’s the perfect Thailand experience waiting just for you! Soak up the culture, embrace the night life, spend hours in the sun on the beach or set off on an adventure. A Thailand adventure is yours to enjoy however you want. Travel here to indulge, unwind and be flawed by natural beauty. In Thailand, you’ll always feel welcomed—from a hospitable smile, to service beyond compare. Thailand is ready for you, so what are you waiting for?
- Capital: Bangkok
- International Airport: Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK) & Phuket International Airport (HKT)
- Language: Thai
- Currency: Thai Baht
- Government: Constitutional monarchy; parliamentary democracy
- Current Monarch: King Maha Vajiralongkorn
- Religion: Buddhist (majority)
Location and Geography
Thailand is located in Southeast Asia. It shares borders with Myanmar and Laos in the north, Laos and Cambodia in the east, Malaysia and the Gulf of Thailand in the south and Myanmar and the stunning Andaman Sea to the west. The total land covered comes to an impressive 513,000sq. kilometres, making Thailand the 12th largest country in Asia (50th in the world!). Because of it’s size, the geography of Thailand significantly varies depending on where you go. The country is divided into 6 regions to best represent this—the North, Northeast, Central, South, East and West.
Northern Thailand is dominated by highlands. With impressive mountain ranges, rivers, nature trails, waterfalls and botanical scenes, this area is popular with hiking tourists in the cool season. The Northeast features similar highland areas, but also boasts stunning plateau areas. The Mekong River runs through this area and Thai Jasmine Rice is grown here before it’s exported all over the world! West Thailand, though in parts bordered by the Andaman Sea, is mostly landlocked and therefore dominated by mountainous woodlands. Tourist travel here to explore lush national parks, visit the World War II Museum and Art Gallery, the Kanchanaburi War Cemetery and the fascinating Underwater City.
Central Thailand is where you’ll find the capital, Bangkok. Famed for its tall skyscrapers, megamalls, historic temples, the Royal Palace and colourful night markets, there’s something for everyone here! The South and East will appeal to beach lovers. Boasting the islands of Phuket, Koh Samui, Koh Phi Phi and more in the South and the half ocean-half mountain dominated regions of Pattaya and Trat in the East, these stunning areas are equal parts picturesque, peaceful and vibrantly “Thai”. Travel here to be pampered, to feast, to party and unwind. If you’re confused by Thailand’s layout, you can view our map here!
What to do in Thailand
There are so many different things to do in Thailand, it’s hard to know where to start! Our recommendation is to first think of what you’re interested in. If that’s food, Thailand is for you! From fine dining rooftop restaurants in the capital, to fresh spicy favourites and cooking classes at your 5-star resort; unique market produce or tantalising street food pretty much wherever you go, there’s a dish and a dining table to suit you in Thailand! Enjoy cocktails at swim-up bars, a glass of wine as you gaze out from the bar at the city lights and everything in between. Our number one tip with food in Thailand though is to remember it’s spicy! Never underestimate the power of a Thai chilli! (mild and International favourites do exist though, so don’t let that put you off!).
If history and culture is more your scene, get ready for the holiday of a life-time. Thai culture is deeply ingrained into everyday life and, no matter where you go, you won’t be far from a temple (Wat), palace, museum, dance performance or festival to celebrate all things Thai. There are more than 30,000 Buddhist temples in Thailand. Not only do these incredibly ornate structures play an important religious role, they also act as educational centres—telling tales of Thailand’s artistic and cultural heritage through their architecture. Popular temples include Wat Phra Kaeo (the Temple of the Emerald Buddha), Wat Arun (the Temple of Dawn), Wat Benchamabophit (the Marble Temple) and Wat Pho (the Temple of the Reclining Buddha). These are all in Bangkok, but there are also countless other incredible temples in Phuket, Chang Mai, Chang Rai and beyond!
Another “must” for Thailand is a visit to the royal palaces. Thai people are extremely devoted to their King and the monarchy. Visit The Grand Palace in Bangkok, Bang Pa-In Summer Palace Ayutthaya, Bhubing Winter Palace in Chiang Mai and many more throughout the country! Once you’ve marvelled at the wealth and majesty, there’s shopping, water sports, hiking, adrenaline sports and nature spotting to do! Check out our top Thai experiences here and, to work out when to visit, click here to read about the weather in Thailand.