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Books on Thailand

Thailand 5 nights in Thailand from 589

A search for information about Thailand on the web yields hundreds of results, many of them of questionable quality. The information below has been carefully selected and includes summaries so that you can concentrate on just the information you want.
 
How Thailand began
Sukhothai, meaning the "Dawn of Happiness" was the first free Thai city founded in 1238. The story of this "Golden Age" of early Thai history up until the 15th century, when Sukhothai was incorporated into the Ayutthaya kingdom as a province, is clearly presented on this excellent page from Mahidol University at:
http://www.mahidol.ac.th/Thailand/history/sukhotha.html.
 
Visa and Customs Regulations
Visitors to Thailand must possess valid passports or acceptable travel documents and appropriate visas before entering the country. Visitors from certain countries are permitted to stay for up to 15 day without visas, provided they possess tickets confirming departure within 15 days, while visitors from several other countries are allowed to apply for tourist visas at all ports of entry. Transit visas are granted for up to 30 days and tourist visas for up to 60 days. 1, diplomatic and official visas are valid for up to 90 days.
Customs. Narcotics and pornographic materials are strictly prohibited. Permits must be obtained for firearms and certain species of animals and plants. The export of Buddha images, images of deities and antiques is strictly forbidden without first obtaining approval from the Fine Arts Department. Any amount of foreign Currency may be brought in for personal use.
See the Passports and Visas page at:
http://www.mahidol.ac.th/Thailand/glance-thai/thailand.html#Visit_Info.
 
Languages of Thailand
How many languages are spoken in Thailand? Surprisingly, the answer is 75, and all are living languages. Over 3 million speak Pattani Malay, and just 5 (at the last count!) spoke Mang. You can find full details and lots of interesting information about all the languages at:
http://www.ethnologue.com/show_country.asp?name=Thailand
 
The sights and sounds of Bangkok
Andy Carvin's marvellous travelogue, photogallery and RealAudio archive of his November 1997 trip to Southeast Asia icludes this lovely page about Bangkok, complete with many photographs and sounds of the city including Weaving through traffic in a Tuk-Tuk, Worshippers chanting at Wat Suthat and Gamblers shouting their bets at Ratchadamnoen Stadium. Worth looking at:
http://www.edwebproject.org/seasia/bangkok.dayone.html
 
Cha-am and Hua Hin
Located on the sunrise side of the Gulf of Thailand, Cha-am and Hua Hin are quiet relaxed coastal towns, perfect for family vacations. These resorts lack the bustle of an international playground and instead offer a quiet escape. Part of the excellent Thailand Travel Guide site, the pages on Cha-am and Hua Hin are full of useful information adn contain enough description and photos to tempt you into sampling the place. For the nature lover it is "a place of wonder where the stunning landscape is a breathtaking blend of forested hills, deep valleys, waterfalls, caves, beaches, mangrove swamps and coves" and if temples are your thing then "This old town has a number of superb temples dating from the late Ayutthaya period, as well as several other important sights such as Khao Luang Cave and Phra Nakhon Khiri, the 19th century hilltop palace of King Mongkut".
Don't forget to take a look at the rest of this interesting site as well, at: http://www.thailandtravelguide.com/huainfo.html
 
Thailand Photo Album
If it's photos you are looking for, you won't do better than the excellent "Thailand Photo Album" site. It's a bit confusing when you arive at the opening page, but just select a place from the drop down menu at the top (under the title) and you're away. And the site has more than just pictures. There are a whole lot of free "ebooks" to download as well.
You can find all this at: http://www.thailandphotoalbum.com/
 
Thai Language and Culture
For those seriously interested in Thai language and culture, the excellent learning resources from Northern Illinois University are a must. The site is beautifully presented and contains an enormous amount of interesting and scholarly information. A lot of the text is in Thai but there is also much in English. A word of warning; don't assume that when you see something on this site that looks like Thai language, you should ignore it. There are many places where English text is displayed in an artistic font, and looks at first sight like Thai!
You can find the Northern Illinois Universituy site at: http://www.seasite.niu.edu/thai/
 
Books on Thailand
There are many good books on Thailand and I haven't read them all. However, I do recommend Frommer's Thailand, 5th Ed which is an excellent guide well written by someone who lives in Thailand. For a wide range of other books on Thailand click here.

Where to stay - Holidays

Where to stay - Hotels
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East Asia in Focus
Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional This document was last updated 10 November 2005
2005 Graham G Hawker