Electrical outlets are rated at 220 volts, 50 cycles. Plug sockets typically take flat, two pronged or round two pin plugs.
Spoken and written Thai remain largely incomprehensible to the casual visitor. However, English is widely understood in hotels, shops and restaurants in many destinations.
Population and People
The population of Thailand stands at around 67 millions, the majority being ethnically Thai, with the rest being of Chinese, Indian, Malay, Mon, Khmer, Burmese, Lao and British origin which are also represented to varying degrees. Other geographic distinctions of the population include a Muslim majority in the south near the Malaysian border, and hill tribe ethnic groups, such as the Hmong and Karen, who live in the northern mountains.
Food and water
Contrary to popular myth, all Thai food is not fiery hot, although some dishes can be very spicy for those that do like their food hot! Thai food is wonderfully fragrant and tasty and has a wonderful assortment of flavours: fragrant curries, stir-fried dishes, vegetables, salads and soups and a variety of choices of meats, vegetables and succulent seafood.
As in any country there are wonderful regional specialties.
A Thai meal is traditionally rounded off with some fresh fruit which can be anything from young pineapple, freshly picked banana to the perhaps more exotic tastes of mango, durian and pomelo.
It is advised that you drink only bottled (or boiled if it is tea or coffee) water during your stay in Thailand.
While Thailand’s seasons are generally divided into the hot season (March through to May), rainy season but with plenty of sunshine, (June to October), and cool season (November through to February), in reality it’s relatively hot most of the year.
Even in Rainy season, there may be some cloud and an occasional downpour (usually short lived) but still a good chance for plenty of sunshine!
Thailand offers many and varied shopping experiences, from street markets and stalls to the more Westernised type shopping malls. There is a wonderful array of art and craft products, with each region having its own specialties.
Many shops will also arrange packing or packing and shipping, with documentation at reasonable prices if required.
Thailand, the only Southeast Asian nation never to have been colonised by European rulers, a unified Thai kingdom has existed since the mid-14th century. Thailand was formerly known as Siam until 1939 when it officially became the Kingdom of Thailand. It has a constitutional monarchy.
Thailand is the 50th largest country in the world, covering some 510,890 sq km of land and 2,230 sq km of water. Located just 15 degrees north of the equator and has a tropical climate.
Thailand’s largest mountain summit, Doi Inthanon, is 2,565 meters (8,415 ft) tall, approximately x miles East of Doi Nok Strawberry Resort, as the crow flies.
Formally known by outsiders as Siam, Thailand shares its borders with Myanmar (formerly known as Burma) to the west and north, Laos to the northeast, Cambodia to the east, and Malaysia to the south.
On May 11, 1949, an official proclamation changed the name of the country to "Prathet Thai" or "Thailand". The word "Thai" means "free", and "Thailand" means "Land of the free."
Thailand can, generally speaking, be divided into four areas: the mountainous north, the fertile central plains, the semi-arid plateau of the northeast, and the peninsula south. The capital is Bangkok.
Time in Thailand is 7 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT +7)
Bank note denominations include 1,000 (gray), 500 (purple), 100 (red), 50 (blue), 20 (green), and 10 (brown) Baht notes.
10-Baht coins are brass discs encircled by a silver coloured frame. 5-Baht coins are a silver colour with copper rims. There are three silver coloured 1-Baht coins. There are also two types of 50 and 25 satang coins.
Most newspapers will list daily exchange rates between Thai Baht and major world currencies. You can also check the exchange rates online or at any bank.
ATM machines are found in all cities and towns. Many of them will accept major credit/debit cards. The maximum amount that you can withdraw from an ATM at any one time may vary, but it is usually 20000 Thai Baht.
More than 90% of the population profess their faith in Theravada Buddhism. 5% are Muslims, most of whom inhabit the southern region. The rest of the population is Christian, Hindu, Sikh and so on. Hill Tribes practice animism but many tribes: Karens and Lahu for instance, have been converted to Christianity.