Thailand is a wondrous kingdom, featuring glittering Buddhist temples, exotic wildlife and spectacular islands marked by turquoise oceans and white sands, diverse wildlife, and great culture and food.
Along with a fascinating history and modern capital city, Thailand radiates a unique charm which lures tourists, holidaymakers, honeymooners and adventure enthusiasts from all over the world.
Often heralded as the “Land of Smiles”, the people of Thailand welcome tourists wholeheartedly and are happy to share what their country has to offer.
Thailand is a Mecca for shopaholics from across the world. From local shopping markets to high-end malls, shoppers are spoilt for choice, particularly for items such as silk, fine handicrafts, pearls, silver and gold.
Thailand's booming tourist economy, driven largely by Hollywood (the country has been the setting for The Man with the Golden Gun, The Bridge over River Kwai and Alex Garland's The Beach), has resulted in the opening of a number of expensive and luxurious international hotels.
However, those looking for the rustic splendour of the beaches and islands will find plenty of cheap and comfortable accommodation.
The size and geographical diversity of Thailand provide for a variety of activities - snorkelling, diving and a host of watersports are very popular around the Islands, while inland enthusiasts can trek into the mountains or cycle across the flat river areas of the northeast.
Snuggled between Laos, Burma, Cambodia and Malaysia, Thailand is a country with extraordinary contrasts and an idyllic escape for those who yearn to get away from the daily rut.