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Thailand

Background

Thailand

A unified Thai kingdom was established in the mid-14th century. Known as Siam until 1939, Thailand is the only Southeast Asian country never to have been taken over by a European power. A bloodless revolution in 1932 led to a constitutional monarchy. In alliance with Japan during World War II, Thailand became a US treaty ally following the conflict. A military coup in September 2006 ousted then Prime Minister THAKSIN Chinnawat. The interim government held elections in December 2007 that saw the former pro-THAKSIN People's Power Party (PPP) emerge at the head of a coalition government. The anti-THAKSIN People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) in May 2008 began street demonstrations against the new government, eventually occupying the prime minister's office in August and Bangkok's two international airports in November. The PAD ended their protests in early December 2008 following a court ruling that dissolved the ruling PPP and two other coalition parties for election violations. The Democrat Party then formed a new coalition government and ABHISIT Wetchachiwa became prime minister. In October 2008 THAKSIN went into voluntary exile to avoid imprisonment for a corruption conviction, and has since agitated his followers from abroad. THAKSIN supporters re-organized into the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD) and rioted in April 2009, shutting down an ASEAN meeting in Phuket, and in early 2010 protested a court verdict confiscating most of THAKSIN's wealth. Between March and May 2010, the UDD staged large protests and occupied several blocks of downtown Bangkok. A government operation to disperse the protesters after nine weeks led to clashes that resulted in 89 deaths and an estimated $1.5 billion in arson-related property losses. These protests exposed major cleavages in the Thai body politic which continue to hamper the current government. Since January 2004, thousands have been killed as separatists in Thailand's southern ethnic Malay-Muslim provinces increased the violence associated with their cause.

About

Thailand (ประเทศไทย), officially the Kingdom of Thailand (ราชอาณาจักรไทย) is a country in Southeast Asia with coasts on the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. It borders Myanmar (Burma) to the north-west, Laos to the north-east, Cambodia to the south-east and Malaysia to the south.

With great food, a tropical climate, fascinating culture and great beaches, Thailand is a magnet for travellers the world over.

Read more about Thailand in our Thailand travel guide »

Featured journals from

Thailand

Roaming Without a Home

by hobovoodoo

My Life on My Back, The World at My Feet...

Jan 2014 - Aug 2014  »  China (People's Republic) | Nepal | India | Thailand

Southeast Asia winter 2011

by psmadsen

Brief photo updates from my winter 2011 journey in Australia and Southeast Asia.

Sep 2011 - Dec 2011  »  Australia | Vietnam | Cambodia | Thailand

Cambodia and Thailand Oct-Nov 2015

by RADAR

Phnom Penh, Kap, Koh Rong,

Oct 2015  »  Cambodia | Thailand |

Jamie & Karens Great Adventure

by ladykb

Living the Dream

Feb 2014  »  Thailand

Featured hotels in

Thailand

ThailandBundarika Villa & Suites Phuket 

168 Moo 6 Layan Beach Soi 4
Thalang 83110
Thailand

Price (US$): $187 - $374 / night

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Location. Bundarika Villa & Suites Phuket is located on the beach in Thalang, close to Layan Beach, Bang Tao Beach, and Nai Thon Beach. Laguna Phuket Golf Club is also a point of interest near this luxury resort. Resort Features. Bundarika Villa & Suites Phuket features a restaurant and a bar/lounge. Room service is available during limited hours. Recreational amenities include a sauna, a fitness facility, and a steam room. The property's full service health spa has body treatments,… more »

ThailandIndigo Pearl 

Nai Yang Beach and National Park
Thalang 83110
Thailand

Price (US$): $534 - $1503 / night

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Location. Indigo Pearl is located on the beach in Thalang, close to Splash Jungle Water Park, Blue Canyon Country Club, and Nai Thon Beach. Mai Khao Beach is also a point of interest near this luxury resort. Resort Features. Dining options at Indigo Pearl include 6 restaurants. A swim up bar, a poolside bar, and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational amenities include a children's pool, outdoor tennis courts, a health club, and a children's… more »

ThailandSix Senses Yao Noi Beyond Phuket 

Moo 5 Tambol Koh Yao Noi
Amphur Koh Yao
Ko Yao Noi 82160
Thailand

Price (US$): $653 - $2211 / night

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Location. Six Senses Yao Noi Beyond Phuket is located on the beach in Ko Yao Noi, close to Manok Pier. Regional points of interest also include Tubkaek Beach and Loh Paret Beach. Property Features. Dining options at Six Senses Yao Noi Beyond Phuket include 3 restaurants. A beach bar, a poolside bar, and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available during limited hours. Recreational amenities include an outdoor pool, a health club, a sauna, a steam room, and complimentary… more »

ThailandAndara Resort Villas 

15 Moo 6, Layi Naka Road
Kathu 83150
Thailand

Price (US$): $911 - $4213 / night

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Location. Andara Resort Villas is located near the beach in Kathu's Kamala neighborhood and close to Kamala Beach, Laem Singh Beach, and Surin Beach. Nearby points of interest also include Phuket Fantasea Cultural Theme Park and Kalim Beach. Hotel Features. Andara Resort Villas's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A poolside bar is open for drinks. Room service is available during limited hours. Recreational amenities include an outdoor pool, an outdoor tennis court, a health… more »

ThailandFour Seasons Hotel Bangkok 

155 Rajadamri Road
Patumwan District
Bangkok 10330
Thailand

Price (US$): $260 - $1195 / night

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Location. Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok is a business friendly hotel located in Bangkok's Ratchaprasong neighborhood, close to Police General Hospital, Embassy of the United States, and Embassy of the United Kingdom. Additional points of interest include Siam Paragon Mall and MBK Center. Hotel Features. In addition to 6 restaurants, Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok offers a snack bar/deli and a coffee shop/cafĂ©. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours… more »

Browse more hotels in Thailand »

Thailand

Full name
Kingdom of Thailand
Capital
Bangkok
Location

Southeastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand, southeast of Burma

Geographic coordinates

15 00 N, 100 00 E

Area comparative

slightly more than twice the size of Wyoming

Border countries

Burma 1,800 km, Cambodia 803 km, Laos 1,754 km, Malaysia 506 km

Coastline

3,219 km

Climate

tropical; rainy, warm, cloudy southwest monsoon (mid-May to September); dry, cool northeast monsoon (November to mid-March); southern isthmus always hot and humid

Terrain

central plain; Khorat Plateau in the east; mountains elsewhere

Lowest point

Gulf of Thailand 0 m

Highest point

Doi Inthanon 2,576 m

Natural resources

tin, rubber, natural gas, tungsten, tantalum, timber, lead, fish, gypsum, lignite, fluorite, arable land

Population

67,089,500

Ethnic groups

Thai 75%, Chinese 14%, other 11%

Religions

Buddhist 94.6%, Muslim 4.6%, Christian 0.7%, other 0.1% (2000 census)

Languages

Thai, English (secondary language of the elite), ethnic and regional dialects

Government type

constitutional monarchy

Independence

1238 (traditional founding date; never colonized)

National holiday

Birthday of King PHUMIPHON (BHUMIBOL), 5 December (1927)

Chief of state

King PHUMIPHON Adunyadet, also spelled BHUMIBOL Adulyadej (since 9 June 1946)

Head of government

Prime Minister ABHISIT Wetchachiwa, also spelled ABHISIT Vejjajiva (since 17 December 2008); Deputy Prime Minister SANAN Kachornprasat, also spelled SANAN Kachornparsart (since 7 February 2008); Deputy Prime Minister SUTHEP Thueaksuban, also spelled SUTHEP Thaugsuban (since 22 December 2008); Deputy Prime Minister TRAIRONG Suwannakhiri (since 18 January 2010)

Internet country code

.th

Internet users

17.483 million (2009)

Airports

105 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Bangkok, Laem Chabang, Map Ta Phut, Prachuap Port, Si Racha

Other countries in the region