Thailand - a tropical nature, warm sea, stunning landscapes and amazing monuments of Buddhist architecture. The country is extremely exotic, which will decorate your stay. Mysterious Siam, the country of a thousand temples and smiles, a popular holiday destination of millions of tourists from all over the world. Thailand will surprise and seduce you by majestic mountains, clean rivers, impenetrable jungle, exotic animals and plants, the amazing Thai cuisine, highly revered by local customs and the special atmosphere of fun, carefree, universal love of peace and joy ...
Thailand is located in Southeast Asia, in the west of the Indochina Peninsula and the north of the Malay Peninsula. Thailand borders with Cambodia and Laos to the east and north-east, Myanmar in the north and west, and Malaysia to the south. In the north and west of the country extend Mountains (highest point - Inhtanon mountain, 2576 m.), In the east - a vast sandstone Korat Plateau, the central area of the country is extensive Menamskaya lowlands and the southern part of the country - the low plains to the mountains and the island remnant ridges. The country has (including islands) 517 thousand square kilometers.
The capital Bangkok.
Thailand - the leader in attendance among the countries of Southeast Asia. Thousands of Buddhist temples and monasteries, magnificent palaces and pagodas in Bangkok, the beautiful beaches of Pattaya, Patong, Phuket and Koh Samui, a lively nightlife with a wide variety of shows and entertainment, the notorious sex tourism of all kinds, the famous Thai massage and martial arts, riding on elephants , excellent conditions for diving, unique floating bazaars and hundreds of exotic uninhabited islands of the Andaman Sea, the famous Thai dishes and colorful Buddhist festivals - all this attracts the attention of millions of tourists.
Bangkok, which means "city of wild plums", founded by King Rama I in the XVIII century, is famous for its amazing architectural monuments and culture. Hundreds of Buddhist temples and the peaked roof of the palace, thousands of machines and thousands of ships on dissecting the city canals ("Klong"), constant stench of exhaust fumes and street braziers, and small cozy English-style park - all are woven together. Thai Krung Thep city is called ("City of Angels"), but the official name of the capital is much longer and completely unpronounceable for "farang" ("white foreigner"), as they call the tourists locals. The historic city center is on the Rattanakosin Island ("Higher Jewel"), which is formed by the Chao Phraya River and its ducts, and surrounding areas. The main attraction here - the Grand Palace (1783) - the residence of the Thai monarchy, with a magnificent park and buildings in traditional Thai style (the area of the palace - 218.4 thousand. Sq. M., The length of the walls - more than 2 km.). In the royal palace complex also includes a lot of old buildings, which form parts of the Dusit Maha Prasat, and Mahamontien - Library and Mausoleum that houses the cremated remains of members of the royal family, palaces Chakri (1868-1910 year.) From the throne room, the personal residence of the monarch - Chakrabardibiman , Dusit, Boromabiman with famous frescoes Mahishra-Prasad and Reception Hall Amarinda and Paisan Hall (Phra Paisan Tinang Takshina), where the coronation of the Thai kings. There is also a favorite residence of King Rama V and the largest building in the world built entirely of golden teak - Vimanmek (1900, now used as a museum). Next to the Royal Palace installed giant ceremonial swing Lak Muang - two huge pillars with carved teak bar. North of the royal residence located Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew, 1782) coupled to the gates of the royal residence. It houses one of the shrines of Buddhism - the famous statue of a seated Buddha on the golden altar, dug entirely from one large piece of jadeite (the first mention of this statue belongs already to 1464!).
The city has more than 400 marvelous temples, the most famous of which are the Temple of the Golden Buddha (Wat Trimitr), where there is a statue of Buddha made of pure gold weighing 5.5 tons, the largest temple complex of Wat Po with a giant statue of the reclining Buddha - the oldest and largest temple in Bangkok Wat Bench Mabofit (Marble Temple, XIX-XX centuries.) Wat Arun (Dawn or Rising Sun, is a former fortress Thonburi) with 79-meter tower, Wat Suthat, Wat Thon Buris et al.
According to the oldest city in the New Street you can go down to the waterfront, where boat or "sampan" you can go to walk through the many hours of "Klong" (channels) through the city. Bangkok used to be called the "Venice of the East", as the 140 can admire to this day continue to maintain the rhythm of the city. It's a completely different world - the world of poverty and luxury, commerce and fishing, floating markets and the mysterious nightlife. To the north of downtown - Silom, Siam area is Skue being the commercial center of the capital. Here are the most large supermarkets and small shops of the city, a shopping arcade and a shop, and the prices are very low. On the largest avenue of Bangkok - Sukhumvit, which is the center of international tourism, are hundreds of cafes, bars, hotels, restaurants and nightclubs, as well as some of the best shopping centers of the city. At every major hotel has its own nightclub. A wide variety of entertainment venues focused on Patrong and New Petchaburi-Rhoads, on which there are hundreds of salons, bars and restaurants. No less known for its nightlife and restaurants street Rachada.
In the town are several museums, a planetarium, an art gallery and cultural center. The most popular with visitors to National Theater, National Museum with a wonderful collection of Thai art and Buddhaysavan chapel (1795), Thammasat University at Sanam Luang, and the Museum of Science - one of the best science and technology museums in the region. In the house of the architect (and spy!) Jim Thompson Silks now houses the Museum and a permanent exhibition of antiquities collected by Thompson in Southeast Asia. A city parks, like embedded skilful hand in silence forever bubbling appearance of the city, will stay amidst tropical greenery tired from the bustle of the traveler. Next to the Sunday market in the northern part of Bangkok is a charming park Chatuchak, and amusement park Magic-Land attracts carousels, bathroom horror and other entertainment. The largest park of the capital - Lumpini, located right in the downtown area. New name Rama IX Park was opened by the King, and the famous Safari Park-world - this is a huge (170 acres) of land on the outskirts of the capital, is famous for its nurseries wildlife, excellent Dolphinarium Marina Park and a huge water park Siam Park.
In Samut Prakan (30 km. Southeast of Bangkok) is the world's largest crocodile farm with more than 40 thousand. Freshwater and saltwater crocodiles, as well as with its own zoo and the Museum of the dinosaurs. 30 km south of Bangkok, is a vast floating market in Bang Nam Pueng. On weekends from 8.00 am to 14.00 you can buy a lot of different products, including seafood, fruits, flowers, spices and local handicrafts. In this case, the main attraction of the market are the traffickers themselves, deftly plying between rows on their boats. At 33 km. Bangkok is a park of Muang Boran ("Ancient City"), which reproduced the entire territory of the Kingdom of the most famous historical monuments.
At 86 km. north of Bangkok lies the ancient capital of Siam and modern Historical Park - Ayutthaya (1350-1767 year), famous for its ancient temple ruins of Wat Phra Chao Phanan Choeng (XIV c.), Chao Mongkol, Wat Phra Si Sanphet (XIV c.) , Wat Phra Meru, Wat Chai Vattanaram, as well as the ruins of the palace of Bang Pa In - the summer residence of the first kings of the Chakri dynasty. City listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. To the west of Bangkok, near the town of Nakhon Pathom is the world's largest Buddha statue - in the sunlight 127-meter high Phra Pathom Chedi, and near the town of Kanchanaburi (130 km. Bangkok) - the infamous bridge over the River Kwai and the "Road death ", built of war during world War II. Nearby is the famous cultural center "Rose Garden" - one of the best ethnographic expositions country. Next - the zoo and elephant reserve Samphran.
Northern Thailand - yet underdeveloped touristy area, but that it is also the birthplace of Thai civilization, and scenic areas of forests, waterfalls, colorful national holidays, dozens of ancient cities and temples. Chiang Mai (700 km. North of Bangkok) - the second largest and most important city in the country. Nestled in a valley between the mountains, reaching a height of 2600 m., "Old town" Chiang Mai (founded in 1296) is surrounded by thick walls and a moat. In and around the city of about 300 temples and historical sites, which gives it a special charm. Examples such as Doi Suter Shrine, Wat Phra Singh, Wat Chiang Man (1296, the oldest monastery in the region), Phra Satang Man with its miniature Buddha images, which about 2 thousand. Years, Wat Chedi Luang, and one shrines of Buddhism - standing on top of a mountain, 16 km. to the north-west of Chiang Mai's great temple Wat Phra Doi Suthep (XIII-XIV centuries.), and the summer residence of the Royal Family - Palace Phuping, brought the city international fame.
Nearby is the town of Mae Hong Son with a mysterious temple Wat Kham Chhong with antique murals - one of the oldest buildings in the country. Also interesting Wat Phrathat Don Kongmu, keeping the sacred relics of the Buddha Wat Kitti Wong and Wat Chong Klang. Mae Hong Son in the markets you can find interesting folk souvenirs from Laos, Burma or work unique northern tribes of Thailand. The district Mae Hong Son, Chiang Mai and lying between Chiang Rai, is unique for its natural parks, beautiful waterfalls and hundreds of caves, and the surrounding mountains are rich in hot springs and healing mud. In Forest Park Namtok Pa Sia-the eponymous six-step waterfall in the park Tham Pla - a unique "Fish Cave", where in cave streams are billions of colorful fish, and a small grotto - a huge variety of sizes for coloring and snails. National Park Nam Tok Mae Surin is famous for the hundred-meter waterfall Mae Surin, as well as cave We Offer a fantastic "garden" of stalactites and stalagmites. On the road from Mae Hong Son to Chiang Mai is a unique "Farm orchids" and the famous "Elephant Village" where are bred and trained these majestic animals for various chores, and for the amusement of tourists incredible stunts.
5 km. to the south lie the ruins of Wiang Chiang Kum Kam - the earliest historical settlement in the area (near the X-XI centuries.). Sukhothai Historical Park is located at 447 km. north of Bangkok, and covers 70 square meters. km. area along the left bank of the river Yom, protecting more than 100 dilapidated buildings of this ancient capital of the country (XIII-XV centuries.), including the famous temple Wat Si Chum with a statue of a seated Buddha, the distance between the knee which is 11 m. Chiang Mai and the surrounding areas are inhabited many tribes and nations ("hill tribes", about 550 thousand. persons), the original culture which has not experienced the influence of civilization until the twentieth century. One of the most mysterious tribes of the region - Karen ("pa dong", "pghano"), the ideal of feminine beauty of one of the tribal groups, which are a woman with a long neck and big ears, so the neck of girls at an early age wear a heated copper tube and spin her around the neck. With age, the rings are added, respectively, and increases the length of the neck, giving women an exotic look. Interesting and northernmost village of the tribe, "fox", where he lives hospitable and sociable people, creating a very beautiful and colorful national costumes, decorated with lots of silverware. Many tribes cultivated opium smoking, officially sanctioned by the authorities as part of a cultural tradition (this permission does not apply to tourists visiting the tribes).
To the north-east of Chiang Mai and 785 km. Bangkok is Chiang Rai, the former capital of Lanna Thai ("kingdom of a million rice fields"). And today, the city and its surroundings are known for unusually beautiful nature, as well as numerous Buddhist temples. At Wat Phra Kaew previously stored Emerald Buddha, which is now in Bangkok, Muang Ngam Hill is considered the burial place of the legendary King Mangrove Great, is also interesting for its architecture temple Wat Phra Singh and many other places of worship. To the north-east of Chiang Rai, on the banks of the Mekong River, is another ancient capital - Chiangsaen, famous temples of Wat Phra Thap Chom Kitti, Phra That Doi Tung Wat Chedi Pa Sak, and Chedi Luang, as well as its rich museum. Just beyond the boundary of the city begins the famous "Golden Triangle" (Sop Ruak) - mountainous forest area at the toe of borders with Burma and Laos, the cradle of Thai civilization, where many centuries ago came the first independent Thai state. Now this area is notorious as the "capital of opium," but the true charm of the edge is in the beautiful mountain scenery with waterfalls, elephant herds in villages and dense forests in many Thai and Burmese temples.
Of particular interest to tourists are the famous Thai martial arts - a well-known Thai boxing or Muau-Tai ("Battleship"), Chaya ("Victory"), the school sha-foot-fan ("five clan fighting cats") and crab-krabong ("stick-pole"), in which the contest attracted thousands of visitors to the country. Also widely known passion Thais gambling sports involving animals - the famous cockfight, competition fighting fish, and even exotic elephant fights. Foreigners to such competitions are not very willing to admit, but in the case of "success" spectacle is worth it to spend a couple of hours on it - so spectacular and original such traditional entertainment.
The two main types - tropical climate in the north and a tropical monsoon in the southern and south-eastern regions. In the central part there are three seasons - hot (March to May), rainy (June to October, when the country falls on the south-east monsoon and drops most of the annual precipitation) and cool (November to February). In Bangkok in April, the temperature reaches 29 C, December 25 C. The amount of precipitation is 1000-2000 mm. per year (in the mountains up to 5000 mm.), which fall mainly in the form of strong tropical storms. But common to all countries of the rainy season is not - depending on the direction of the prevailing wind, even the two neighboring regions can obtain an order to distinguish between the amount of precipitation.
Ahead of Moscow for 4 hours in the winter and in the summer 3. Time zone - 7 of Greenwich. Daylight saving time in the country is not.
Official language - Thai (Siamese). In the cities, widespread English, Chinese and Japanese.
Thai language consists mainly of monosyllabic words. And as combinations of one syllable is sufficiently small, then used numerous tonal variation. Also complex and writing (three letters "to" three "t", two "x" and so on). In this regard, the majority in the European geographical names transcription have many options pronunciation and quite difficult to understand
Currency - Baht (THB), equal to 100 satang. In circulation coins of denomination yellow alloy of 25 and 50 satang, nickel coins in denominations of 1, 2, 5 baht plastic "bill" 50 baht and bimetallic coins worth 10 baht. Banknotes are issued in denominations of 10 baht (brown), 20 baht (green), 50 baht (blue), 100 baht (red), 500 baht (purple) and 1000 baht (gray). Satang in circulation has almost never occur.
Citizens of the Russian Federation for a trip to Thailand require a visa, which can be obtained as at the border of the state (at the airport and at land crossings), and in the visa section of the Embassy of the Kingdom of Thailand in Moscow.
To obtain a visa at the consular section of the embassy to submit the following documents:
• a passport, which is valid for at least six months after the end of the trip;
• 2 color photographs measuring 3 x 4 cm;
• a completed application form signed by the applicant;
• a photocopy of the completed pages of internal passport;
• consular fee.
• a certificate of employment on company letterhead indicating the position and salary of the applicant;
• for students - certificate from the school;
• for pensioners - a copy of the pension certificate;
• for the unemployed - a statement from a family member or a sponsor of financing the trip, a certificate from his place of work and a photocopy of the first page of the passport of the applicant;
• for minors - a copy of the birth certificate.
• For children registered in a parent's passport, a separate form is not filled in, their data fit the profile of parents, and the photos are pasted next to a photograph on the parent form. If a child is traveling accompanied by a parent or a third party, to be accompanied with a copy of a notarized consent to the child's departure from the remaining parent (s).
Appointment at the Consular Section of the Embassy of Thailand is not. Personal presence when submitting documents is not required. Reception of documents carried out on weekdays from 09.00 to 13.00. Term of the visa is 5 days. For persons residing in the territory of the Chechen Republic, the term of the visa is 14 days.
The fee for registration of a single entry visa is $ 25, double - $ 50. The fee is payable when submitting documents. Fees are payable at the same size as with adults and with children, even if they are written in a parent's passport.
Validity of a single entry visa is 3 months from the date of issue, period of stay in the country - 2 months. Validity double visa is 3 months from the date of issue, are allowed two entry with the length of stay for two months.
To obtain a visa directly at the border crossing must submit the following documents:
• a valid passport with a validity of at least six months after the end of the trip;
• Two photos 4 x 6 cm (can be photographed directly upon arrival at any international airport in Thailand, the cost - $ 10);
• a completed application form and a card of arrival (departure);
• a completed declaration;
• paid the application fee.
• additional workers visa service may be required to show a voucher, return ticket or proof of financial viability of the tourist for the entire period of stay in the country (travelers' checks, credit card, cash).
• Children under 14 years must be sure to have your passport. Children entered in the passport of parents, visa application form is not filled in (in the parent's passport is required to be affixed photograph of the child, who has reached the age of six).
Visa at the border usually takes between 1.5 and 4 hours. On arrival at Bangkok airport visa fee is 1,000 baht (about 26 dollars, to be paid in baht). Money needs to be changed in advance in the exchange office airport. At the airport Utapao fee is paid in dollars ($ 26-30, the fee may vary depending on the rate of the national currency). Visa fees are charged the same amount as with adults and with children, even if they are written in a parent's passport. Validity of the visa issued on the border, is 14 days.
There are a large number of peculiar dogmas and traditions, so you should be extremely cautious in their actions, and even better - to closely monitor the behavior of the Thais and repeat their actions in the case of doubt about the validity of their actions.
The traditional greeting in Thailand - "wai" - composed of "a boat" palm applied to the head or chest. This is not just a gesture of greeting, and more status with effect from certain etiquette. Order of the commission "wai" is very strict and subordinated to the whole code - hand position and duration of the gesture is determined by the social position of the acclaimed - the greater the person, the higher the climb the palm and the longer the "wai". You can not "return the wai" children and service personnel, so it is better not to adopt the tour this custom blindly without first examining in detail all the details of its application. In everyday life, Thais quite cost friendly nod and a universal "Hello," to shake hands with each other is not accepted. Do not touch the head of Thai (in Vol. H., And small children) - will strike a terrible insult. Seated man, especially if he crossed his legs, in any case should not pay a foot in the direction of people, statues of Buddha and King.
Thais are extremely tolerant of other people's customs and manifestations calm - to raise his voice and even more so - to shout, is considered a sign of bad taste. To the Thai police can contact with any questions. Often colloquially used a 6-hour periods of time of day, ie. E. Hears about "5 hours of the day" and "5 pm local time" (17.00 and 23.00 in the European sense).
Royal House enjoys great respect of the people of the country, Thais certainly arise in the execution of the royal anthem (sung at 8.00 and 18.00 on all TV and radio channels), and in cinemas before each session is shown a portrait of King. Foreigners are also advised to get up and respectfully to stay right on the street in the execution of the royal anthem.
All the statues of Buddha, in whatever form or condition they may be, are considered sacred. Therefore, do not climb on them in order to be photographed (Punishment is usually pretty tough - until the destruction of the film, which depicted such sacrilege), or in any other form of disrespect them.
Women do not have the right to appeal to the monks in turn Buddhist monks allowed to touch a woman or take anything out of her hands. Therefore, a woman who wishes to make an offering to the monk, must first pass it to the man, and he, in turn, give it to the monk. Possible and just put an offering on the edge of saffron cloak or shawl, which on the other hand is holding a monk. In the mosque men should wear hats and women are allowed to go inside only in trousers or a long skirt, a blouse with long sleeves, buttoned up to the top and a scarf covering her head. Before the entrance to the mosque is also necessary to take off our shoes. During the service, stay in the mosque is forbidden to outsiders.
Its beaches most hotels do not. On the beaches of upscale hotels are hung flags indicating the state of the sea - green indicates a calm water surface conditions and bathing without limitation, yellow - a sea storm and rescuers are closely watching the bathers. If the red flag, then swimming is prohibited, and the lifeguards even have the right to prevent the water. For the sun loungers on the beach are charged 20-30 baht. Sunbathing and swimming without a bathing suit smoking - are charged a large fine. Also, many hotels have restrictions on night swimming.
Strongly recommended to accept free trips, excursions, offer food or drinks from strangers (often offer taxi drivers and tuk-tuks). Should always be clearly ascertain whether you have understood the driver. From the hotel, you should always take a card on which was written in Thai hotel address and access to the hotel - it is necessary to explain the road to the taxi driver (sometimes come across drivers who can not even read). A particular problem in recent years have become a rather "loose" morals on some popular resorts of the country. Virtually around the clock dance halls with the indispensable use of soft drugs, braziers with questionable content right at the edge of the beach, the ubiquitous pseudo-prostitutes and beggars, as well as the dubious "massage parlors" filled the resort towns of the west coast. Therefore, the choice of the hotel should carefully consult for orders in this particular place.
Traditional cuisine Thailand
Thai cuisine is largely influenced by two factors - climate and culture, although an important role to play and the history of this country, immigration, invasion. Greatly influenced by China, Burma and Cambodia. Favorable climate allows you to collect here two and even three crops a year, and all kinds of herbs growing all year round. Perhaps it is the local abundance can explain this phenomenon, as in the absence of Thai concept of "hunger." And the fact that the religion of the majority of Thais - Buddhism, dietary restrictions are virtually none. Thais use in her kitchen all kinds of meat, in a lot of fish, and lots of vegetables and fruits. Thai people highly value their traditions and culture. They are proud of their national dishes and love to entertain guests. Streets and canals lined with Thai cities in patches and carts, bicycles and boats, selling a variety of snacks. In Thailand are very fond of parties and celebrations during their noisy and winding festivals certainly serves carefully prepared traditional dishes as a sign of respect for their customs and traditions. Guests are served without interruption trays of appetizers, dishes with exotic fruits and Thai beer or local whiskey. On the table is served all the dishes at once, so that the hostess could enjoy dinner with the guests. In Thai cuisine with pride, beautiful and bright style dishes. Vegetables for garnish cut very carefully, different shapes. The intricate designs and artistic performance - an integral part of Thai cuisine.
Daily meals are very dependent on the weather, the time of year, from harvest and from the vagaries of the rainy season. Thai people relates to food seriously, selects only the freshest ingredients with a delicate flavor and texture. Staple is rice and garnish it, and the main course, and it is served for dessert. Food for a simple Thai khao means, ie Fig. All the rest - vegetables, fish, meat - Thais call "cap khao", which translates as: "what is eaten with rice." Coconut occupies almost the same central place. Thai cuisine varies in different regions, depending on the available products. If desired, the chef can substitute certain ingredients or spices according to taste, keeping only the basic order of preparation. For example, in many recipes pork is replaced by chicken or shrimp.
But there are products that are sure to have all Thai homes. This coconut, lime, rice, chili, garlic, lemon grass (lemon grass), root ginger and coriander. All Thai dishes balance is kept, all extreme tastes well balanced in every dish in every meal.
Political system Thailand
Kingdom of Thailand (Pratet Tai) - a constitutional monarchy, the head of state - the king. The highest legislative body - a bicameral National Assembly (Senate and House of Representatives). Executive power is exercised by the Cabinet of Ministers headed by the Prime Minister.
The Kingdom of Thailand (about 62 million. Persons. Basis of the population are Thai people (more than 15 ethnic groups: Khon-Thai (Siamese), Lao, Thai, Korat, and others.), As well as Malays, Chinese, Khmer, Tibeto-Burman peoples groups tribes Mao, Yao et al.) - a constitutional monarchy, the head of state - the king.
Import and export of imported foreign currency is not limited (declaration of more than $ 10,000). The export of local currency in the amount of not more than 50 thousand. Baht or 500 thousand., If a tourist or Thai is sent to the neighboring (adjoining) with Thailand country. Large sums are taken only by special permission.
Allowed to import duty-free items for personal use, a photo, video or film camera (with the camera you can bring up to 5 films with a video camera - to 3 videotapes) cigarettes - 200 pcs. (or 250 grams. tobacco) to 1 liter. wine or spirits. The import of drugs, weapons (without the permission of the police) and pornography. Persons provozyaschie drugs, sentenced to death!
Banned the export of gold bullion, Buddha images (except for medallions), raw precious stones, ivory and any products made of leather and bone protected animals, as well as stamps and antiques (requires permission from the Department of Fine Arts "Fine Arts Department").
Customs control is mandatory for all, including for diplomats. When departing from the country will be charged an airport tax - 500 Baht per person (often already included in the ticket price).
Medical aid Thailand
High risk of hepatitis A, malaria and Japanese encephalitis. Advised to take out international medical insurance policies, as well as to vaccinate against hepatitis A and B.
In Thailand, a dense network of sufficiently good hospitals, in all the cities you can find qualified doctors, including dentists. Treatment is paid, but, except for some privileged hospitals, the prices are very low. Doctors say in English, and the level of service is high enough. In Thailand, there are no recipes and medicines are freely sold in pharmacies.
Working hours Thailand
Large banks are open only on weekdays from 8.30 to 12.00. Smaller banks and licensed exchange offices are open on weekdays from 8.30-09.30 to 15.00-15.30. In the resort areas of operation of banks often longer.
Most shops are open from 10.00 to 20.00, and individual shops and small shops - from 8.30 to 6.30. In the resort areas of operation of the majority of outlets are not limited by strict timeframes.
Bangkok ties with the province of an extensive network of motorways. Buses of the State Transport Company go on schedule, tickets cheap and divided into 3 classes. Buses first class orange ("rot daeng"), standard (windows for better ventilation unglazed), stop on demand and therefore move slowly. Blue buses are air-conditioned second class ("ac") only stop in major population centers. VIP-class buses have a smaller number of seats and great comfort (glass and air conditioning required).
Buses - the basis of the country's urban transport. On the lines of work like machines, air-conditioned (travel more expensive), and those where there is no air conditioning. Apart from the usual, there are express routes. From 23.00 to 5.00 on some lines run night buses (without air conditioning). Tickets can be purchased from the driver or ticket collector in the cabin.
Road and driving rules.
In Thailand, the left-hand traffic, the situation on the roads rather tense - frequent accidents, the local traffic rules by drivers is not adhered to, and the condition of the roads is poor (except for the resort areas). On city streets need to exercise extreme caution!
In Bangkok, traffic is almost always serious jams.
Public transport in Bangkok - a very complicated and strange mixture of modern and traditional vehicles. It consists of buses, minibuses, conventional metro Skytrain Station (Skytrain) and various types of taxis - ordinary, motorcycle and scooter - tuk-tuks, and water.
The main traffic load are buses, which in turn are divided into ordinary, speed, and air-conditioned and without. Thus one and the same route can walk buses of different types with different price fare. Normal bus costs 4 to 5 baht, an express 5.5 baht. Air conditioned buses are 8 to 20 baht, depending on the route and duration of the trip. Tickets can be purchased from the conductor. Minibuses are from 3 to 3.5 baht.
Subway lines in Bangkok three (two above ground and one underground Skytrain). The fare on the Skytrain - from 10 to 40 baht. There are tickets for 10, 15 and 30 trips - 250, 300 and 540 baht, respectively. Day pass costs 100 baht, three days - 280 price of travel in the underground metro ranges from 12 to 31 baht depending on the distance of travel (in the summer of 2005 the price will increase to 14-36 baht).
In other cities of Thailand transport is less developed, there you can find pedicabs and other exotics. The main means of transportation almost everywhere - bus.
Metro - Metro lines in Bangkok three (two above ground and one underground Skytrain). The fare on the Skytrain - from 10 to 40 baht. There are tickets for 10, 15 and 30 trips - 250, 300 and 540 baht, respectively. Day pass costs 100 baht, three days - 280 price of travel in the underground metro ranges from 12 to 31 baht depending on the distance of travel (in the summer of 2005 the price will increase to 14-36 baht).
Cars, taxis meet two kinds: "TAXI" - without the counter and "TAXI-METER" - with payment over the counter (fare - from 35 to 200 baht depending on the distance). In the "TAXI" to bargain, and the price is usually agreed in advance. It is recommended to give preference to cars with air conditioning, as gassed streets is sufficiently large that, in the local heat strongly felt during long trips. In Chiang Mai and Pattaya function taxi often perform "songtheo" - pick-up or a small truck with benches for passengers. The trip, regardless of distance, usually worth 10 baht per person.
There are also local and exotic species taxi: Scooters ("tuk-tuks"), moto taxi (the passenger is offered simply to sit on the motorcycle behind the driver and wear a helmet. Having a way to deal with the Bangkok traffic jams), and water taxis along the Chao Phraya in Bangkok. Prices tuk tuks and motorbikes, roughly analogous to the car, the price should be agreed in advance.
Potable water Thailand
It is not recommended to drink water from the tap. You should always buy bottled (it is often given for free in hotels).
220 V, 50 Hz.
In the capital of Thailand imposed a ban on smoking in public places - hospitals, schools, offices, public transport, shopping centers and restaurants, as well as in parks and stadiums. Violators can be fined up to 2 thousand baht (about $ 45). Muslims are also planning to announce "the ban on smoking" around 60 Islamic temples in Ayutthaya district.
Tipping is accepted only in tourist areas, they are given to the porters (5-10 baht), taxi drivers (rounded up to the counter at 5-10 baht) and guides, as well as employees of hotels (maid - 10-20 baht per day). In restaurants, services ("service charge") included in the bill as a separate line. In those places where this is not done, a tip on average 10%.
Shorts (for both men and women) are only permitted on the beach and in the hotel. At the entrance to any home, and especially in the temple, you must take off your shoes (with the territory (not inside, namely the territory), some churches can be reached only in the shoe, which is closed heel). When you visit public places and, especially, temples, long pants or skirts should be sufficient to cover the ankles.
Helpful information Thailand
Police department for tourists: (062) 221-06, 221-10, and 16-99; Ambulance: (062) 281-15-44, 281-11-99.