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Thailand a secret no more
It is not called the Caribbean of Asia
for nothing. Yet, until recently, Thailand's
unparalleled marine playground has been
quite difficult to access, enjoyed by but
a handful of cruising yachts and an even
smaller group of charter holidaymakers.
But no more. A surge in the development
of marina facilities and in the number of
yachts available for charter mean that Thailand
is set to burst upon the international scene
as the world's newest yachting playground.
Thailand - Unimaginable coastline, &beaches
Over 1,000 miles of coastline bordering
the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand,
literally thousands of islands, countless
beaches with pristine white sand, crystal
waters and superb coral reefs, hidden creeks
and headlands meeting the sea, mystical
sea mountains. All these combine with a
tropical climate to create the world's most
stunning cruising waters. Welcome to Thailand...
The Thailand that independent cruising yachtsmen
tell tales about on their travels... The
Thailand that many have never left.
Thailand - Safe tropical climate
Although in the tropics, Thailand has no
typhoons. It is not in a hazardous weather
zone. Even the seasonal monsoons are gentle.
Temperatures range from 25' - 35'C for most
of the year, and the sea rarely varies from
a balmy 28'C. This means comfortable, exotic
cruising all year round.
Thailand - Stunning culture
Who has not heard of the friendliness of
Thailand's people, the magnificent cuisine
and the stunning culture? They are all fact.
And all are harnessed to ensure visitors
to this magical Kingdom have an unforgettable
experience. Whichever part of the kingdom
you visit, the experience of Thailand adds
a wonderful extra dimension to a boating
Coastal Thailand lies between 5'C and 13'C
north of the equator, which places it firmly
in the monsoonal weather patterns of the
northern hemisphere. This means that the
prevailing winds from November to April
are northeasterly and from May to October
are southwesterly. Typhoons are not a risk
in Thailand waters and temperatures range
from maximum 35'C to minimum 25'C.
The Andaman Sea coast in the West experiences
regular, fair to strong, breezes between
May and October, when the best sailing is
in the sheltered waters of Phang-nga Bay.
Rain showers are frequent but not persistent
and are interspersed with excellent sunny
clear days. During this season, the Gulf
experiences the same prevailing winds, but
tends to be dryer in the lee of the southern
Between November and April, the winds can
be quite strong in the early mornings tailing
off in the afternoons. Later in the season,
the winds become lighter. Thailand is unique
as a sailing holiday destination. There
is no off-season. Indeed, the May-October
'Green Season' offers near-perfect conditions
for keen sailors with reliable winds averaging
12 – but rarely exceeding 25 – knots, bright
sunshine interspersed with showers, and
generally cooler temperatures.
Thailand - A regional base
Thailand has deservedly become Asia's premier
cruising and boating destination. Residents
of South East Asia already take advantage
of this magical marine world, as do cruising
yachts on their way between the two hemispheres.
If you base your own boat in Thailand, you
may find you never need finish exploring
within the Kingdom's borders, but should
you want to look further, there is no better
base from which to explore the whole region.
And Thailand welcomes you each time you
Thailand - Explore the region from Thailand
Thailand's coast borders three other countries
– Myanmar, Cambodia and Malaysia – each
with coastal assets of its own. North of
the Andaman Sea coast is the border with
Myanmar and its magnificent Mergui Archipelago.
An unspoiled region with many uninhabited
islands, only a few dive and adventure holiday
operators have been given access to date,
but the region is earmarked for sustainable
development. The gateway to this little-explored
area is Phuket and Ranong.
Southwards, at the entrance to the Malacca
Straits, is the Malaysian west coast with
a number of islands offering marina facilities.
Phuket and Satun are well placed to provide
easy access to these cruising grounds, the
last stop in Thailand waters being Ko Tarutao.
On the Gulf coast of Malaysia, marinas are
planned in each major sea port as stepping
stones to or from Ko Samui.
Cambodia is the least developed coastline
in the region and, along with neighbouring
Vietnam, is set to become the next significant
area of interest. The Cambodian border is
just a few miles from Ko Chang.
To the east of Phuket lie the Andaman Islands,
in Indian waters. These sleepy islands,
steeped in tradition, are just 350 miles
off Thailand's west coast and have only
recently begun to welcome visiting yachts.
If you are looking for new frontiers, Thailand
provides the perfect hub from which to explore
the budding cruising grounds of the region.
Thailand - A thousand places to see
The world-famous ‘Pearl of the Andaman'
– Phuket – to the mysterious limestone karsts,
mangrove swamps, creeks, islets and perfect
beaches of Phang-nga Bay, Krabi, Ko Phi
Phi and Ko Lanta. The almost unknown and
unspoiled islands off Thailand's west coast,
heading towards the Myanmar border, to the
extraordinary Similan Islands northwest
of Phuket and south to the Malaysian border.
From the favourite holiday islands Ko Samui
and Ko Pha-ngan in the Western Gulf of Thailand
across to the mountainous and heavily forested
Ko Chang and Kut Archipelagos in the Eastern
The sheer number of destinations awaiting
you within Thailand's borders is outdone
only by the unbelievable variety. From world-class
marina to tiny fishing village, from big
city Pattaya to deserted beaches and uninhabited
islands, this is the marine wonderland of
Thailand. This is Asia's boating playground.
This is the ‘Caribbean' of the East.
Thailand - Full Country Name: Thailand
(Prathet Thailand, meaning "land of
Thailand - Capital: Bangkok (Krung Thep,
meaning "city of angels")
Thailand - Geography:
The kingdom of Thailand lies in the heart
of Southeast Asia, making it a natural gateway
to Indochina, Myanmar and Southern China.
Its shape and geography divide into four
natural regions : the mountains and forests
of the North; the vast rice fields of the
Central Plains; the semi-arid farm lands
of the Northeast plateau; and the tropical
islands and long coastline of the peninsula
The country comprises 76 provinces that
are further divided into districts, sub-districts
and villages. Bangkok is the capital city
and centre of political, commercial, industrial
and cultural activities. It is also the
seat of Thailand's revered Royal Family,
with His Majesty the King recognised as
Head of State, Head of the Armed Forces,
Upholder of the Buddhist religion and Upholder
of all religions.
Thailand is a constitutional monarchy with
His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, or
King Rama IX, the ninth king of the Chakri
Dynasty, the present king. The King has
reigned for more than half a century, making
him the longest reigning Thailand monarch.
Thailand embraces a rich diversity of cultures
and traditions. With its proud history,
tropical climate and renowned hospitality,
the Kingdom is a never-ending source of
fascination and pleasure for international
Thailand - Topography:
Thailand is divided into 4 natural regions:
The mountainous North, with its profusion
of multi-coloured orchids, fascinating native
handicrafts and winter temperatures are
sufficiently cool to permit cultivation
of temperate fruits such as strawberries
The high Northeast Plateau, which still
jealously guards its many archaeological
and anthropological mysteries;
The Central Plain, one of the world's
most fertile rice and fruit-growing areas
with colourful traditional culture and way
of life as well as the sandy beaches of
the East Coast and vibrant cosmopolitan
The peninsular South where the unspoiled
beaches and idyllic islands complement economically
vital tin mining, rubber cultivation and
Thailand - Population:
Thailands are well-known for their friendliness
and hospitality. A large majority of over
62 million citizens of Thailand are ethic
Thailand, along with strong communities
whose ethnic origins lie in China, India
and elsewhere. About 7 million people reside
in the capital city of Bangkok.
Thailand - People:
Thailand (80%), Chinese (10%), Malay (3%),
and the rest are minorities (Mons, Khmers,
hill tribes) Ethnic Thailands form the majority,
though the area has historically been a
migratory crossroads, and has thus produced
a degree of ethnic diversity. Integration
is such, however, that culturally and socially
there is enormous unity.
Thailand - Language:
Spoken and written Thailand is largely
incomprehensible to the casual visitor.
However, English is widely understood, particularly
in Bangkok where it is almost the major
commercial language. English and some European
Languages are spoken in most hotels, shops
and restaurants in major tourist destinations,
and Thailand-English road and street signs
are found nationwide.
Thailand - Government:
Thailand has had a constitutional monarchy
since 1932. Parliament is composed of 2
houses, The House of Representatives and
the Senate. Both representatives and senators
are elected by the people. A prime minister
elected from among the representatives leads
the government. The country is divided into
76 provinces. The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration
comes under an elected governor. Appointed
provincial governors administer the other
75 provinces (Changwat), which are divided
into districts (Amphoe), sub-districts (Tambon)
and villages (Mu Ban).
Thailand - Head of State:
H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX
of the Chakri Dynasty)
Thailand - Climate:
Thailand enjoys a tropical climate with
three distinct seasons-hot and dry from
February to May (average temperature 34
degrees Celsius and 75% humidity); rainy
with plenty of sunshine from June to October
(average day temperature 29 degrees Celsius
and 87% humidity); and cool from November
to January (temperatures range from 32 degrees
Celsius to below 20 degrees Celsius with
a drop in humidity).
Much lower temperatures are experienced
in the North and Northeast during nighttime.
The South has a tropical rainforest climate
with temperatures averaging 28 degrees Celsius
almost all year round.
Thailand - Electricity:
The electric current is 220 volt AC (50
cycles) throughout the country. Many different
types of plugs and sockets are in use. Travellers
with electric shavers, hair dryers, tape
recorders and other appliances should carry
a plug adapter kit. The better hotels will
make available 110-volt transformers.
Thailand - Tap water:
Tap water is clean but drinking from it
directly should be avoided. Bottled water
Thailand - Clothing :
Light, cool clothes are sensible and a
jacket is needed for formal meetings and
dining in top restaurants. Shorts (except
knee length walking shorts), sleeveless
shirts, tank tops and other beach-style
attire are considered inappropriate dress
when not actually at the beach or in a resort
Thailand - Weights & Measures :
The metric system is used throughout Thailand.
Numerals on vehicle speed ohmmeters, highway
markers and speed limits all indicate kilometres.
Thailand - Business hours :
Most commercial concerns in Bangkok operate
on a five-day week, usually from 8 am to
5 pm. Many stores open seven days a week
from 10 am to 10 pm. Government offices
are generally open between 8.30 am and 4.30
pm with a noon to 1 pm lunch break, Monday
to Friday except on public holidays. Banks
are open Mondays to Fridays from 9.30 am
to 3.30 pm except on public holidays.
Thailand - Postal Services :
Thailand's mail service is reliable and
efficient. Major hotels provide basic postal
services on their premises. Provincial post
offices are usually open from 8.00 a.m.
to 4.30 p.m.
International Roaming Mobile Phone : A
Subscriber Identity Module Card (SIM Card)
is now available for Thailand and foreign
customers who are travelling around for
work. The SIM Card must be used in conjunction
with a Digital GSM mobile phone within the
900-MHz range or a Digital PCN mobile phone
within the 1800-MHz range.
Thailand - Fax and E-Mail :
All of Thailand's leading hotels offer
facsimile (fax) and e-mail services. Numerous
private businesses offer such facilities,
most often in conjunction with translation
Thailand - Internet Services :
Thailand has been expanding its information
service for residents and tourists alike
through the Internet system. Services are
now available at Thailand's leading hotels
and at the many " Cyber-Cafes "
that are cropping up in all major tourist