Incorporates a host of superlatives: the largest reclining Buddha, largest collection of Buddha images in Thailand and the country’s earliest center for public education, a must see!.
Almost too big for its shelter, the genuinely and impressive Reclining Buddha, around 46m long and 15m high, shows the passing of the Buddha into nirvana (ie the Buddha’s death). This figure is modeled out of plaster around a brick core and is finished in exquisite gold leaf. Mother-of-pearl inlay ornaments the feet, displaying 108 different auspicious lák·sà·nà (characteristics of a Buddha).
Wat Pho is also the national headquarters for the teaching and preservation of the traditional Thai medicine, which includes the world known Thai massage, a mandate legislated in the past by Rama III when this tradition was in danger of extinction
In the North of Thailand, the Thailand’s “Rose of the North” is a cultural and natural wonderland with a very diverse ethnic, multiple attractions and warming hospitality. Chiang Mai literally means “new city” and has kept the name despite celebrating its 700th anniversary in 1996.
Chiang Mai has its own and distinctive culture, arts, festivals and traditions, exhilarating mixture of local people, as well as foreigners and expatriate communities from all around the world. It has been voted one of the top destinations to live in Asia and is a contemporary and cosmopolitan city, while not having lost its traditional and old charm.
There are so many different things to discover in Chiang Mai. Intriguing diversity among ethnic tribes, multiples elephant camps, several cooking and Thai massage schools, several outdoor activities, a diversity of handicrafts workshops, numerous cultural performances, and breathtaking scenery make Chiang Mai one of Asia’s most attractive and gorgeous tourist destinations.
PaI is a small town located in northern Thailand’s Mae Hong Son Province, close to the Myanmar border, around 50 miles/80 km north of Chiang Mai .
Currently Pai primarily thrives on tourism. Very well known among backpackers for its relaxed and cool atmosphere, the town offers numerous cheap guesthouses, souvenir shops and excellent restaurants. In the proximity you can find spas and elephant camps. Further outside of town, there are a few waterfalls and a several natural hot springs varying in its temperature from around 80 to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you spend enough time in northern Thailand you will eventually hear rumors that Pai is the Ko Samui of northern Thailand. Although this is definitely not accurate, in recent years the town has began to resemble a Thai island getaway but, of course, without the beaches
However, Pai is just as popular among Thais as foreigners and thousands of Thais from Bangkok crowd the town.
SURIN ISLANDS AND RICHELIEU ROCK
Similan Islands is a small group of different and stunning islands in the Andaman Sea off the coast of, and part of, Phang Nga Province.
Similan is one of the best and most famous diving sites in Thailand, and is noted as one of the top ten dive destinations in the world according to the National Geographic Society.
“Similan” is derived from the Malay sembilan, and means “nine” as nine are the islands constituting the National Park.
These amazing uninhabited islands are easily accessible from Phuket for a day trip. The Similan Islands have something for everybody at every age: Marvelous world class dive sites for scuba divers, shallow tropical coral reefs for snorkelers, gorgeous white sand beaches for children to play in and deserted and unspoiled beaches for romantic couples.
Normally the conditions for diving are ideal year-round – with 20 to 30 meter visibility standard. However avoid monsoons season between May and October as is pretty dangerous.
The five exquisite islands that make up the Surin Islands Marine National Park sit around 60km offshore, only 5km from the Thailand–Myanmar marine border. This National Park is considered as one of the best diving destination in Thailand. The clearest of water makes for countless marine life, with an underwater visibility up to 35 meters.
Also, Richelieu Rock (considered by many to be one of Thailand´s most iconic dive places) lies within the borders of the Surin National Park. These areas offer, undoubtedly, the most spectacular and impressive scuba diving in Thailand as this is where the large pelagic, Barracuda, Manta Rays and Whale Sharks, are often sighted together with an amazing purple coral.
Among the “must-see” attractions in all Thailand are, undoubtedly, the palaces, temple ruins and historical sites of Ayutthaya. This former capital of Thailand is located around 90 kilometers north of Bangkok.
A thriving trade and political capital of Siam for more than 400 year is filled with gigantic bronze statues and religious monuments of great historical and cultural importance, even in its actual ruined state. It is fair to say that no study of Thai architecture or art is comprehensive without a trip to this once glorious and magnificent capital, which gave birth in the past to the unique U-Thong style.
It is estimated that Ayutthaya by the year 1700 CE had a population of around perhaps 1,000,000 people, making it at that time as one of the world’s largest cities.
The city has been recognized internationally as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Travel in Thailand is easy and very convenient; the Thailand transportation infrastructure is quite modern and well organized, and exploring the country is a straightforward experience. Whether your travel option is air, rail, bus, road, or water, most types of Thailand transportation are use to catering to visitors and have frequent departures. Therefore it’s easy to move around the country or explore sights around any particular destinations.
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