Month: December 2023

Renting a car in Thailand (Ao Nang, Krabi)

Renting a car in Thailand (Ao Nang, Krabi)

With our group of 5 slow traveling, there are instances where we rent a car to visit places on our terms rather than booking a tour agency. It is just easier with our kids being little and sometimes unpredictable. While we were staying in Ao READ MORE

Renting a Scooter in Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand

Renting a Scooter in Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand

If You are a slow traveler like we are and stay in an area for an extensive period of time, you know how important it is to get around and have a mean of transport for everyday business (to go to the store, market, pharmacy, READ MORE

Fascinating facts about Thailand

Fascinating facts about Thailand

As we are enjoying our time in Thailand since it is our first time here (and it is beautiful to say the least), as part of our worldschooling journey is to learn the most about the country we are in. We gathered some of the most fascinating facts about Thailand. Here we go.

  1. Island Nation – there are 1430 islands in Thailand (we explored some of them but would love to see even more as you definitely get addicted to the beautiful picture perfect landscapes and views of the islands- imagine – majestic rocks, white sand beaches, crystal clear waters, ots of marine life and lots of reefs).
  2. Population – Thailand has more than 71.6 million people living in this beautiful country, about one tenth of it lives in Bangkok.
  3. Elephant is the national animal of Thailand.
  4. The Kingdom of Thailand has a whopping number of National Parks – 147 to be exact.Kaeng Krachan is the biggest one.
  5. Thailand is the only Southeast Asia country to have never been colonized by a European Country.

6. Pad Thai is the national food of Thailand. It is a stir fried rice noodle dish prepared with a choice of protein as well as peanuts.

7. There are around 40000 temples in Thailand.

8. National flower of Thailand is ORCHID. There are more than 1500 orchid species that grow in Thailand which makes it the largest orchid exporter in the world.

9. Thailand has the lèse-majesté law, meaning that if you commit disrespectful acts toward the King or the Royal Family , you can be imprisoned for Treason.

10. Bangkok is named to be the world’s hottest city.

11. There were around 11.5 million tourists in Thailand in 2022. The number grows every year as ore and more people discover it to be an amazing travel destination. It also makes it to be the most visited country in Southeast Asia.

12. The world’s largest snake- a reticulated python is found in Thailand (33 feet long was the biggest one ever found). The world’s largest poisonous snake – King Cobra can also be found in Thailand.

13. Thailand used to be known as Siam. Ever indecisive, Siam’s name changed to Thailand in the year 1939, before coming to be known as Siam once more between 1946 and 1948. Finally, in 1948, the name was reverted back to Thailand again, officially as the Kingdom of Thailand, which it has been known as ever since. in addition to that – Thailand holds the record for having the longest official country name in the world. Its full name is “Prathet Thai,” which translates to “The Kingdom of Thailand.”

14. Siamese cats originated in Siam. There used to be 23 types of Siamese cats, now there are only 6 left. Giving a pair of Siamese cats to a bride on her wedding day is believed to be a a sign of good luck.

15. World’s famous energy drink “red Bull” has its roots in Thailand. It is based on Krating Daeng – a drink made popular in Thailand since 1976. Red Bull was modified to suit western tastes.

16. The longtail boat, also known as “Ruea Hang Yao” in Thai, is a type of watercraft that originated in Thailand in the early 20th century. The engine block and propeller shaft can be spun around 360 degrees to enable steering, making the boats incredibly maneuverable, with the bracket mount also allowing up and down movement.

17. Thais live in the future! Ha ha. Not really, but it would seem so as for the westerners it is 2023 and in Thailand it is 2566. It is because they use a Thai Lunar Calendar.

18. Annual monkey buffet is held near the Pra Prang Sam Yot Temple in Lopburi province. Locals feed the monkeys literally tons of foods to thank them for bringing in the tourists to see them and help the village with the economy.

19. Thai National Anthem is played daily mostly everywhere (schools, churches, mosques, parks, markets etc).

20. Bangkok in native Thai language is the longest city name in the world: Krung Thep Maha Nakorn Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Ayutthaya Mahidol Pop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchawiwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit. Locals just shorten it to Krung Thep (City of Angels).

21. In Thai culture, each day of the week is associated with a particular colour. Although the old tradition of wearing the colour of the day is not as widespread as it once was, the old custom can still be seen in some situations. Most Thai people will know the day of the week they were born and their ‘lucky’ colour:

Monday: yellow
Tuesday: pink
Wednesday: green
Thursday: orange
Friday: blue
Saturday: purple
Sunday: red

22. Throughout Thailand, you’ll find spirit houses, small ornate structures believed to house protective spirits. These are commonly placed near homes and businesses, showcasing the country’s deep-rooted spiritual beliefs and traditions.

23. Songkran marks the Thai New Year, celebrated with the famous water festival in April. People engage in lively water fights in the streets, symbolizing the washing away of the past and welcoming the new year. Chinese Lunar New Year is also celebrated by many Thais.

24. Thailand is home to vibrant floating markets where locals sell their goods from boats. Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is one of the most famous, offering a colorful and bustling experience.

25. National sport of Thailand is of course Muay Thai (Thai Boxing). They even have a day to celebrate it – March 17 is a National Muay Thai Day.

26. The world’s smallest mammal is found in the caves of the Kanchaburi province- bumble bee bats are the size of a bumble bee!

27. Rafflesia are the largest flowers in the world and can grow up to 90cm in diameter, weighing 7 kg! And yep – you can find it in Thailand.

28. Thailand is home to various indigenous or native tribes, often referred to as hill tribes due to their traditional dwelling in the mountainous regions. The six major hill tribes in Thailand are:

  1. Karen (Kariang or Yang): The Karen tribe is one of the largest hill tribes in Thailand. They are further divided into subgroups, including the Karen Proper, Red Karen (Karenni), and the Long Neck Karen (Padaung).
  2. Hmong (Meo): The Hmong people are known for their vibrant culture and distinctive clothing. They have a strong presence in the mountainous areas of northern Thailand.
  3. Akha: The Akha tribe, with their unique customs and elaborate headdresses, is primarily found in the northern regions of Thailand. Their communities often feature traditional wooden houses and terraced fields.
  4. Lahu: The Lahu people are recognized for their skilled craftsmanship and use of intricate silverwork in their traditional attire. They are found in various regions of northern Thailand.
  5. Mien (Yao): The Mien, also known as Yao, have a rich cultural heritage. They are recognized for their colorful costumes and are predominantly found in the northern hills of Thailand.
  6. ** Lisu:** The Lisu tribe has a distinct language and is known for its colorful clothing adorned with intricate embroidery. They reside in the mountainous regions of northern Thailand.

These hill tribes have contributed significantly to Thailand’s cultural diversity, each maintaining its unique traditions, languages, and ways of life. It’s important to approach visits to these communities with cultural sensitivity and respect for their heritage.

29. Thailand is home to the world’s largest solid gold Buddha statue. The Golden Buddha, or Phra Phuttha Maha Suwana Patimakon, weighs approximately 5.5 tons and is located in Bangkok’s Wat Traimit.

Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok houses the revered Emerald Buddha, a statue carved from a single block of jade. The Buddha is considered the guardian of Thailand, and its outfits are changed by the Thai King three times a year.

30. Buddhism is an integral part of Thai culture. Thais believe that when a man turns 20, he should be ordained and enter a monastery for a period of time to study dharma, the teachings of the Lord Buddha.

That is it for the facts, although there are many many more things that I could add here as this country has been so educational, different from anywhere we have ever been before. It captured our hearts. Forever grateful to have come here to Thailand!

Local markets in Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand

Local markets in Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand

While worldschooling with our kids, we really like to immerse ourselves in the local environment of the country that we are visiting. Finding and shopping at a local market is one of the ways to experience local culture, local foods, interact with local people, learn READ MORE