You will no doubt have heard Thailand called the land of smiles and it is; by and large true, I say this with tongue in cheek because the Thais are a genuinely friendly people but you have to bear in mind their circumstances.
Whilst they are a hard working race they get no help from their government. If they have not got, or cannot find work, then they do not eat.
It follows therefore that if they get their hands on a foreign traveller with money they are gonna smile and make sure they do everything possible to keep them happy, while at the same time hoping to receive some of their money.
Should you be going to travel in Thailand please enjoy all it has to offer and believe me that is an awful amount but temper it with consideration for the local population.
So many people get the wrong idea about Thailand.
They seem to think it is only girlie bars and all that mucky stuff,when really Thailand is like any other country when you get down and simple with the natives.
I have been fortunate enough to spend a lot of time in Northern Thailand over the last fifteen years. I try to spend at least the English winter months there and this falls in nicely with the cool season in Thailand.
After all these years it still amuses me to see all the locals going about their daily lives wearing thick coats hats and scarves. Having said that some evenings I too feel a little bit chilly.
Where I live in Northern Thailand the region is landlocked so if, you only want beaches then you need to head south to the Islands which, in their own right are beautiful but need to be visited for their own merits.
Anyone with a preference for the cultural aspects of Thailand must visit Northern Thailand. The temples are an essential element of any trip to the North.
The food is different in the North and has to be tasted to be believed. My favourites are Geng Kieo Wan (not the correct spelling but, the nearest phonetic sound.) which translates to Soup (Geng) Green (kieo) Wan (thin). We call it Thai Green Curry. Moo Pat Prik is my next favorite. Moo (pork) Pat (fried) Prik (pepper) or Fried Pork with Green Peppers.
Visitors to the North will be able to experience craft making of specific items as diverse as Real Silver jewellery to Packaging Products made from Raa Paper, Exquisite!
Just take a look at this image where you will see Rich at work in his shop in the famous Chiang Mai Night Bazaar (Market). Make no mistake this is an actual hand drawn portrait drawn from just a photograph. Such skill is a pleasure to behold. More examples can be seen on our Thai Crafts Page by clicking on this link or the navigation tab above.