Thailand Country Guide

Cities & Destinations


Thailand is the world's 50th largest country (equivalent to the size of France or California) and home to 67 million people. The northern region of Thailand is mountainous while the northeastern region consists of the Khorat Plateau. Thailand's central region is mostly flat with the Chao Phraya River passing through the region and draining into the Gulf of Thailand. The southern region comprises of the narrow Isthmus of Kra (joining with Peninsular Malaysia) and home to several major beach resorts in the country.

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Major Cities

  • Bangkok - Capital of Thailand, a bustling city and known among the Thais as Krung Thep.
  • Ayutthaya - Historical city (UNESCO World Heritage Site) and once the capital of Siam.
  • Chiang Mai - Hub of Northern Thailand and the fifth largest city in the country.
  • Chiang Rai - Gateway to the Golden Triangle and home to several ethnic minorities.
  • Kanchanaburi - Home of the "Bridge over the River Kwai" and several World War II museums.
  • Nakhon Ratchasima - The largest city and main gateway to the Isaan region.
  • Pattaya - Major tourist destination, known for its beaches and noisy nightlife.
  • Sukhothai - The first capital of Thailand and home to several magnificent ruins.
  • Surat Thani - Once home of the Srivijaya Empire and gateway to the Samui archipelago.

Bangkok at night by Alter

Other Major Destinations

  • Ko Chang - Formerly a quiet island but now undergoing major tourism development.
  • Ko Lipe - Small scenic island situated in the middle of Tarutao National Park.
  • Ko Pha Ngan - An island in the Gulf of Thailand, halfway between Koh Samui and Ko Tao.
  • Ko Samet - Nearest island beach resort and escape from bustling Bangkok.
  • Koh Samui - Beach resort and entertainment hippie mecca currently going upmarket.
  • Khao Sok National Park - One of the most beautiful wildlife reserves in Thailand.
  • Khao Yai National Park - National park in the Isaan region with spectacular waterfalls.
  • Krabi Province - Includes the beach resorts of Ao Nang, Rai Leh, Ko Phi Phi and Ko Lanta.
  • Phuket - Touristy and over-developed beach resort but still has some beautiful beaches

Beach in Phuket by Dawn in Phuket

Country Guide
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