Thailand

While in Thailand there is wide variery of places to visit. AYUTHAYA The sacred city, the sacked city, Ayuthaya is complexly intertwined with Thai nationalism and religion. Ayuthaya was the former royal capital. The city was named after Ayodhya (Sanskrit for ‘unassailable’ or ‘undefeatable’), the home of Rama in the Indian epic Ramayana. Its full Thai […]

While in Thailand there is wide variery of places to visit.

AYUTHAYA The sacred city, the sacked city, Ayuthaya is complexly intertwined with Thai nationalism and religion. Ayuthaya was the former royal capital. The city was named after Ayodhya (Sanskrit for ‘unassailable’ or ‘undefeatable’), the home of Rama in the Indian epic Ramayana. Its full Thai name is Phra Nakhon Si Ayuthaya (Sacred City of Ayuthaya). A day trip gives a superb introduction to the architectural heritage of the ancient capital Ayutthaya. A thriving trade and political capital of Siam for over 400 years, Ayutthaya is filled with palaces, temples and religious monuments of great historical and cultural significance – even in their ruined state. It is fair to say that no study of Thai architecture or art is complete without a trip to this once glorious capital, which gave birth to the unique U-Thong style.

BANGKOK Bangkok is the capital city of Thailand. Bangkok is one of the world’s top tourist destination cities. With so much of life conducted on the street, there are few cities in the world that reward exploration as handsomely as Bangkok. Cap off an extended boat trip with a visit to a hid- den market. A stroll off Banglamphu’s beaten track can end in conversation with a monk. Get lost in the tiny lanes of Chinatown and come face to face with a live Chinese opera performance. After dark, let the BTS (Sky- train) escort you to Th Sukhumvit, where the local nightlife scene reveals a sophisticated and dynamic city. Among Bangkok’s well-known sights are the Grand Palace and major Buddhist temples, including Wat Phra Kaew, Wat Pho, and Wat Arun, to name a few. The Giant Swing andErawan Shrine demonstrate Hinduism’s deep-rooted influence in Thai culture. Vimanmek Mansion in Dusit Palace is famous as the world’s largest teak building, while the Jim Thompson House provides an example of traditional Thai architecture. Other major museums include the Bangkok National Museum and the Royal Barges National Museum. Cruises and boat trips on the Chao Phraya and Thonburi’s canals offer views of some of the city’s traditional architecture and ways of life on the waterfront.

CHIANG MAI Chiang Mai is the largest and most culturally significant city in northern Thailand. Chiang Mai hosts many Thai festivals, including: Loi Krathong (known locally as Yi Peng): Held on the full moon of the 12th month in the traditional Thai lunar calendar, being the full moon of the 2nd month of the old Lanna calendar. In the western calendar this usually falls in November. Every year thousands of people assemble floating banana-leaf containers decorated with flowers and candles onto the waterways of the city to worship the Goddess of Water. Lanna-stylesky lanterns, which are hot-air balloons made of paper, are launched into the air. The sky lanterns are believed to help rid the locals of troubles and are also taken to decorate houses and streets. Songkran : Held in mid-April to celebrate the traditional Thai new year. Chiang Mai has become one of the most popular locations to visit for this festival. A variety of religious and fun-related activities (notably the good-natured city-wide water-fight) take place each year, along with parades and a Miss Songkran beauty competition. Chiang Mai Flower Festival : A three-day festival held during the first weekend in February each year, this event occurs when Chiang Mai’s temperate and tropical flowers are in full bloom. Tam Bun Khan Dok, the Inthakin (City Pillar) Festival, starts on the day of the waning moon of the six lunar month and lasts 6-8 days

PATTAYA Pattaya’s a stay up late kind of town, but wake up earlier than most and there are activities galore to redress your daytime/nighttime balance. Hit the dive shops to explore the city’s offshore reefs and wrecks, or get some fresh air on world-class golf courses. And if you’re here with the family, the kids will find plenty to do to make it a real holiday.

PHUKET Phuket is Thailand’s largest and most popular island, Phuket is as colourful as it is cosmopolitan and one of the world’s most famous dream destinations. Phuket boasts some lush inland vistas, including a few remote swathes of rainforest on Ko Yao, but the island really comes into its own along its western shoreline, where hunter-green foliage meets the turquoise waters of the Andaman Sea. The mile upon sandy mile of coastline boasts tons of water sports, delectable restaurants and decadent resorts

KANCHANABURI Kanchanaburi is a town in the west of Thailand and the capital of Kanchanaburi province. With field, forest and stream, Kanchanaburi has become a catch basin for new arrivals overwhelmed by Bangkok (a mere 130km east) and a closer alternative than Chiang Mai for Thailand’s soft version of ‘trekking’ (elephant rides, short hikes and bamboo rafting). The town sits in a fertile valley where sugar-cane fields bow in the breeze, measuring out an easy pace. Kanchanaburi is famous for their temple caves, an underground communion of animistic spirit worship and traditional Buddhism.