For some, Thailand evokes a tropical beach paradise, while others admire its opulent royal palaces, ancient ruins and ornate Buddhist temples, and still others love the bustling cities! Thailand has become one of the most popular destinations in Asia because it has something to offer everybody: spa breaks (particularly offering the traditional Thai massage), floating markets and modern shopping malls, elephant treks, diving, festivals, and more! Its bustling capital, Bangkok, is a hotchpotch mix of ultramodern cityscape rises and quiet canal and riverside communities, temples and pagodas, and commercial hubs like Chinatown, snaking alleys full to bursting with shophouses, markets and diners.
KEY FACTS BEFORE YOU GO:
- Capital: Bangkok
- Currency: Thai baht
- Time Difference: Thailand follows Indochina Time throughout the year, which is 6 hours AHEAD of BST and 7 hours AHEAD of GMT.
- Flight time: 11.5 hours direct to Bangkok - other popular Thai destinations require a connecting flight.
- Official language: Thai
- Entry requirements: Your passport must have a minimum of 6 months' validity remaining from date of entry. Thai authorities are known to be strict about refusing entry if passports are damaged or have pages missing. Visas are not required if entering by land or air and staying for up to 30 days (a 'visa exemption'). You can only enter Thailand through a land border using the 30-day visa exemption twice per calendar year; if you need to cross land borders more frequently, you will need to get the appropriate visa in advance of travelling - contact the Royal Thai Embassy or or Thai Immigration Authority if you have any queries about visas or entry requirements. These rules only apply if arriving in Thailand by land, not by air.
- Vaccinations and Health: You should always ensure that you travel with adequate travel health insurance. For up-to-date information, please check this website (as recommended by the Foreign Office): https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/country/221/thailand#Vaccine_recommendations. If vaccinations are required, it is generally advisable to arrange an appointment with a health professional four to six weeks before departure.
General information on travel vaccinations can be found on the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/travel-vaccinations/
To find out more, and for the most up-to-date advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/thailand
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