About Thailand

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about-thailand_1Thailand is a country in Southeast Asia with coasts on the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. Its shape and geography divide into four natural regions: the mountains and forests of the north; the vast rice fields of the Central Plains; the semi-arid farm lands of the northeast plateau; and the tropical islands and long coastline of the peninsula south. The country is bordered by Burma to the northwest, Laos to the northeast, Cambodia to the southeast and Malaysia to the south. Thailand is the most popular tourist destination in Southeast Asia. You can find almost everything here: thick jungle as green as it can be, crystal azure sea that feel like a warm bath and food that can curl your nose hairs while tap dancing across your taste buds.

The country comprises 76 provinces that can be divided into five geographic and cultural regions: Central, North, East, Northeast and South. Bangkok, aka "Krung Thep" is the capital city and centre of political, commercial, industrial and cultural activities. There are 2 special governed districts: the capital Bangkok and Pattaya, of which Bangkok is at provincial level. Each province is divided into districts and the districts are further divided into sub-districts. Some parts of the provinces bordering Bangkok are also referred to as Greater Bangkok. These provinces are Samut Prakan, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Samut Sakhon and Nakhon Pathom.

Population: Thailand is considered to be the world's 20th largest country in terms of population with approximately 63 million people. Thais are well-known for their friendliness and hospitality. Large majority citizens of Thailand are ethic Thai, along with strong communities whose ethnic origins lie in China, India and elsewhere. About 7 million people reside in the capital city of Bangkok.

People: Thailand's people are mostly Thais so it consists 80% of Thais, 10% of Chinese, and 3% of Malay and the rest are minorities (Mons, Khmers, hill tribes) Ethnic Thais form the majority, though the area has historically been a migratory crossroads, and has thus produced a degree of ethnic diversity.

Language: The country's official spoken and written language is Thai. Spoken and written Thai is largely incomprehensible to the casual visitor. Thai is a tonal and analytic language. (Think about the difference in your voice when saying "yes." versus "yes?" - that's tonal). The combination of tonality, a complex orthography and a distinctive phonology can make Thai difficult to learn for those who do not already speak a related language. In Thailand, English is a mandatory school subject. Therefore English is widely understood, particularly in Bangkok where it is almost the major commercial language. English and some European Languages are spoken in most hotels, shops and restaurants in major tourist destinations. Public signs are also generally bilingual, written in both Thai and English.


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