Thailand not only enjoys a great diversity of fauna and flora, but it accommodates a wide ethnic diversity as well. Thanks to its abundant resources and fertile land, it has attracted peoples of many lands, who have settled and thrived here.
The origins of the Thais is a much debated topic among academics. Three decades ago it could be said with presumed certainty that the Thais originated in northwestern Szechuan in China about 4,500 years ago and later migrated south to their present homeland. However, this theory has been altered by the discovery of remarkable prehistoric artifacts in the village of Ban Chiang in the Nong Han District of Udon Thani Province in the Northeast of Thailand. These include evidence of bronze metallurgy dating back 3,500 years, as well as other indications of a culture far more sophisticated than previously believed by archaeologists. It now appears that Thais might have originated here in Thailand and later scattered to various parts of Asia, including some parts of China."Siam" is the name by which the country was known to the world until 1939 and again between 1945 and 1949. On May 11, 1949, an official proclamation declared that the country would henceforth be known as "Thailand." The word "Thai" means "Free," and therefore "Thailand" means "Land of the Free."Source: Thailand into the 2000's
Situated in the heart of the Southeast Asian mainland and covering an area of 513,115 sq. km., from North 5 o30" to 21o and from East 97 o30" to 105o 30", Thailand borders the Lao People's Democratic Republic, Cambodia and the Gulf of Thailand to the east, Myanmar and the Indian Ocean to the west, and Malaysia to the south. Thailand has maximum dimensions of about 2,500 kilometers north to south and 1,250 kilometers east to west, with a coastline of approximately 1,840 kilometers on the Gulf of Thailand and 865 kilometers along the Indian Ocean.
Land Usearable land: 27.54%
permanent crops: 6.93%
other: 65.53% (2005)
The North is a mountainous region comprising natural forests, ridges and deep, narrow, alluvial valleys. The major city in the region is Chiang Mai.Central Thailand , the basin of the Chao Phraya River, is a lush, fertile valley. It is the richest and most extensive rice-producing area in the country and has often been called the "Rice Bowl of Asia." Bangkok, the capital of Thailand, is located in this region.
The Northeast region is arid, characterized by rolling surfaces and undulating hills. Harsh climatic conditions often result in this region being subjected to floods and droughts.
The Southern region ranges from hilly to mountainous, with thick virgin forests and rich deposits of minerals and ores. The region is the center for production of rubber and cultivation of other tropical crops.