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Thailand: jungles, ancient temples and beaches

Thailand is a constitutional monarchy of Southeast Asia, with as capital the city of Bangkok. This Asian country occupies part of the Indochinese peninsula and the northern section of the Malaysian peninsula. It borders Burma to the west and north-west, Laos to the north-east and east, Cambodia to the south-east, Malaysia to the south, to the south-west it is washed by the Andaman Sea while to the east by the Gulf of Siam.

THE GEOGRAPHY OF THAILAND

The country has a very diverse territory, in the northwest dominate the mountains, which sometimes exceed 2,000 meters in height. As happens in the surroundings of the city of Chiang Mai, where the highest mountain in Thailand, the Doi Inthanon, rises (2,565 meters).

The north-eastern region is partially occupied by the Khorat plateau, a series of undulations between 100 and 200 meters high. In this area much of the border with Laos is marked by the Mekong river, the largest river in the Indochinese peninsula.

The center of the country is characterized by the vast valley where the Chao Phraya River flows, the most important river in Thailand. This river forms a large plain, intensely cultivated and highly populated. In this region, near the sea, there is also the capital Bangkok.

The part of Thai territory that occupies the Malaysian peninsula is made up of narrow coastal plains and isolated hills. The coast washed by the Gulf of Siam is often low and bordered by lagoons and islands (Ko Samui (228 km²), Phangan (168 km²), etc.). While that of the Andaman Sea is rocky, lively and full of islands (Phuket (543 km²), Phi Phi Islands, Ko Lanta Yai, etc.).

THE ECONOMY OF THAILAND

The Thai economy is a rapidly developing economy, agriculture has as its strength the cultivation of rice practiced in the vast plain of the Chao Phraya river, of which Thailand is one of the world’s largest producers. Other cultivated products include corn, cassava, peanuts, tobacco, sorghum, beans, sweet potatoes, fruit (bananas, pineapples, citrus fruits, mangoes), cotton, sugar cane.

Thailand is the world’s largest rubber producer, which is grown in the region of the Malay Peninsula. Forest resources are rich in precious essences, including teak, ebony, sandalwood and yang. Of great importance are fishing (herring, anchovies, mackerel) and livestock (cattle, buffalo, pigs and poultry). The subsoil is rich in tin (among the first world producers), tungsten, iron, lead, precious stones (sapphires), oil and natural gas. The industries are concentrated almost exclusively in the area of the capital Bangkok. The most developed sectors are the textile, food, chemical, petrochemical and metalworking sectors. An economic sector of great importance is the tourism sector. Of great appeal are the islands along the Thai coast. The best known are those of Ko Samui and Phuket.

The climate of Thailand.

The site of the Government of Thailand.

  • Area: 513,115 km². (Arable 40%, Pastures 1%, Forests and Woodlands 26%, Uncultivated and Unproductive 33%)
  • Population: 62,828,000 (2006) (Thai 75%, Chinese 14%, Malay 2%)
  • State Capital: Bangkok.
  • Languages: Official language is Thai.
  • Religion: Buddhist 95%, Muslim 4,6%, Christian 0,75%.
  • Currency: Baht (THB)
  • Time: UTC +7 hours.

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