Boxing Stadiums in Bangkok

Boxing Stadiums in Bangkok
List of Boxing Stadiums; Ratchadamnoen Stadium, Ratchadamnoen Nok Road, open every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 6.30 p.m.-10.30 p.m., and Sunday at 5 p.m.-8 p.m. and 8.30 p.m.-12.00 p.m. Tel: 0 2281 4205, 0 2281 0879, 0 2280 1684-6. Lumphini Stadium, Rama IV Road, every Tuesday and Friday at 6.30 p.m. and Saturday at 5 p.m. and 8.30 p.m. Tel: 0 2251 4303, 0 2252 8765. Bangkok Boxing Stadium, Thiam Ruam Mit Road, Huai Khwang, Bangkok. Tel: 0 2618 5314 - 6 Website: www.muaythai.co.th , www.bangkokboxingstadium.com

Thai Boxing

Thai Boxing
Muay Thai or Thai boxing is both a sport and means of self defence. Contestants are allowed to use almost any part of their body: feet, elbows, legs, knees, and shoulders, are all weapons. The playing of traditional music during bouts makes for even greater excitement. For those who is interested in experience in watching Thai Boxing, there are Boxing stadiums in Bangkok and main tourist cities as the list displayed below. More links on Thai Boxing;www.muaythai.co.th provides information on Thai boxing martial arts in Thailandwww.onesongchai.com provides information on Boxing by Promoter Songchai Ratanasubanwww.muaylok.com provides information on Boxing news in Thailandwww.muayying.com provides information on ladies boxing and thai boxing martial art in Thailandwww.onesongchaigym.com provides information on Gym and Thai boxing institute in Thailandwww.bangkokboxingstadium.com provides information on Fighting Stadium in Bangkok

Thailand Standard Hotels Directory 2008

Thailand Standard Hotels Directory 2008
Know for a complete range of facilities and amenities, as well as exceptional hospitality, the Thai hotel business has risen to have a role of major significance in our country's tourism industry. This has been further accentuated by initiating the necessary strategies that would create a positive image of Thailand to travellers and business people all around the world.
With this in mind and in wishing to have the hotel and resort industry recognized at the international level, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), in conjunction with the Foundation for Standard and /human Resource Development in the Hospitality Industry (Hotel Standard), the Thai Hotels Association (THA), the Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA), and relevant educations, has implemented the Project to Establish the Thailand Hotels Standard.
This is aimed at developing the hospitality and tourism industry, as well as human resources within the hotel business to meet the internationally set standards. This initiative is also being further promoted in the Hotel Directory 2007-2008 that has been published for the benefit of key stakeholders and the general traveling public.
Therefore, on behalf of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to hotels, resorts, and the relevant public and private agencies for not only participating in the aforesaid project, but also for their continuous endeavors that in tum further promotes Thailand’s tourism industry to the global arena.For more information

“O Bangkok Magic name, blessed name”

“O Bangkok Magic name, blessed name”
Published by Signal Books: www.signalbooks.co.uk North American edition by Oxford University Press: www.amazon.com Available in Thailand from Asia Books. Excerpt from Bangkok. A Cultural and Literary History by Maryvelma Smith O’Neil Available in Thailand from Asia Books.
“But where does one begin with Bangkok,” English writer F. K. Exell mused in 1963. “It was a complete mixture of spurious West and inscrutable East. It was dirty. It was clean. It was beautiful. It was ugly. It was ancient. It was modern. It had scented temple flowers and the stench of rotting fish.”
For more than a century after Bangkok was founded in 1782 most westerners approached it expecting to find the ‘Venice of the East’, as the former Thai capital at Ayudhya had been called, and would only later discover its unique aspects. Ayudhya had been a prosperous city – like Bangkok, built on canals – and one of the greatest maritime ports of Southeast Asia until the Burmese vanquished it in 1767. The Chakri monarchs aimed to replicate the spiritual and physical glory of Ayudhya in the new capital. And succeeded, to judge from many nineteenth-century-travelers who responded with rapt delight at first view of the astonishing spectacle that appeared just after their steamers rounded the wide bend of the Chao Phraya River. A British traveler reaching Bangkok in 1865 thought he saw a mirage: the city “seemed to have arisen from the waters” right before his eyes. He would have seen the houseboats or huts built on stilts that stretched along the river banks as far as the eye could see. Picture them shaded by tall, slender palm trees. Flame-of-the-forest flowers accent a cerulean sky. Pendulous yellow blossoms - floral chandeliers -overhang impenetrable mangrove swamps.
The king owned all the land – because he is god-like, proclaimed a royal decree. His earthly abode was a fortified palace complex adjacent to the Chao Phraya, the river of kings, coursing through Bangkok before spilling into the Gulf of Siam thirty-five miles downstream. Over the centuries, the river became a bustling international emporium with great ships - first junks, then steamers - dwarfing the native dwellings. As the city laid claim to the vast, low-lying deltaic plain of the Chao Phraya valley, traditional amphibious habitats were gradually abandoned. Over the next century the water-world of Old Bangkok was paved over; the last holdouts of the unique floating city were evicted by government order in the early 1950s.
One of the most destructive factors in the changing nature of the “city in a garden” was undoubtedly the laying down of roads, replacing the watery lattice of canals that had been one of the great wonders of Southeast Asia. Rama IV Road, built in 1857, was the first truly public thoroughfare. New Road (Charoen Krung), the earliest macadam street for wheeled vehicles in the burgeoning commercial area next to the port, dates from 1862. The first major boulevard, which swathes through the old city, was cut in the late nineteenth century following King Chulalongkorn’s first visit to Paris.
During the second half of the twentieth century a sprawling, land-based, industrial metropolis began to mushroom on the alluvial plain. The rapid, unplanned and unimpeded expansion in the 1960s was largely due to American development money. Strategic roads led northeast to US military bases on the Thai border. These highways also encouraged an influx of poor peasants who gravitated to the capital, many ending up in sprawling slums.
Although so much has changed in Bangkok over the last century, visitors today experience feelings similar to those recorded in 1863. A sense of bafflement follows the generally conflicting impressions of the place; but few were bored then, and few now. An English visitor remarked that the “continuous and picturesque contrast of splendour and poverty, of fastidious etiquette and informality,” kept one on one’s toes. The same is true today.

Northeast Rockets Festivals 2008

Rockets soar to encourage rain in the Northeast, devout Buddhists climb a mountain in the North, kayaks race to qualify for the Olympics, just west of Bangkok, while country music lovers meet in the far western province of Kanchanaburi to fine tune their thoughts on the environment.These are just a few of the highlights on offer around Thailand in May. Residents of Thailand’s largest region, the Northeast or I-san, make merry in the month of May, demonstrating how the art of building homemade powerful missiles has passed down through the centuries.If they need an excuse to organise a party and indulge in their favourite pastime of stage comedy and folk musicals, then the onset of the rainy season provides it. Yasothon is home of the most famous rocket festival known as Bun Bang Fai early in the month, but for festival lovers who might have missed that opportunity to mingle and experience a distinctive I-san tradition, there is still time to catch the spectacle at Udon Thani and Khon Kaen, two well known town in upper I-san.Following the popular format seen in most town that celebrate the start of the rice planting season by firing salvos of rockets, both towns will kick off their festivals with street parades that show off the rockets and the local beauty queens.Udon Thani Rocket Festival runs from 17 to 21 May, in Baan That district, offering three days of merry making leading off with a beauty contest and parade, while rockets of various sizes, from super missiles capable of an amazing lift off to small baby versions, are ignited on 20 and 21 May. In a similar fashion, the Khon Kaen Rocket Festival runs from 24 to 25 May, in Ka Nual district, with fun-filled hours of celebration and a rocket parade to show off the designs and technical prowess that can send these bamboo or plastic pipe rockets to heights of 1 kilometre or more. The actual rocket launches take place on the second day.

Trace the Clue of Architecture on both banks of the Chao Phraya River

Trace the Clue of Architecture on both banks of the Chao Phraya River
Chao Phraya River is a significant river of Thailand. It has its origin from the north by the tributaries namely Ping, Wang, Yom and Nan flowing together and meeting at Pak Nam Pho District, Nakhonsawan Province and transforming into a big river running southwards through the following province: Uthaithani, Chainat, Singburi, Angthong, Ayudhaya, Pathumthani, Bangkok before exiting to the sea via Paknam or mouth of the river at Samutprakarn. Paknam area used to be the location of Chao Phraya District before. Therefore, the name of this river has derived from the name of the district that is Chao Phraya River.
There have been many significant events in the Thai history occurring along both banks of the river where it has served as the location of already 3 capitals viz. Ayudhaya, Thonburi and Bangkok. Many events and stories had already faded and washed away with the water of this river. However, there has been a linkage to the stories in the past worthy of recall regarding the progress, belief, faith, love, distress which was transformed into story via architecture work in variety forms all along the both sides of this historic river.

GREEN FINS: Eco-friendly Diving in Thailand

GREEN FINSEco-friendly Diving in Thailand An interview with Niphon Phongsuwan, Project Leader, Green Fins Project Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Introduction to the Green Fins Programme
Green Fins Code of Conduct
How You Can Help
Sustaining the Programme
Thailand — One of the World's Top 10 Dive Destinations
Reef Stability and Health
Environmentally-Friendly Dive Operators in Thailand
Thailand welcomes over 550,0001 dive tourists each year and is home to over 80,000 certified divers of its own. Dive tourism in Thailand has increased by more than twenty-fold from 25,000 divers2 in 1985.
THE GREEN FINS PROGRAMME Coral reefs are an important resource in Southeast Asia, contributing to the economic incomes of the coastal population and the growing dive tourism industry in this region. The East Asian Seas region contains one of the greatest concentrations of coral reefs in the world. The area is so rich in biodiversity that more coral and reef fish species can be found here than anywhere else. The coral reefs of the region can be regarded as a classic example of a rich and diverse ecosystem.3
Map of global coral diversity from the World Resources Institute Please click to expand
Thailand joins The Philippines in being actively engaged with Green Fins.The main reason the participating countries were selected is recognition of the importance of the Indo-Pacific in terms of their contribution to global marine biodiversity. As this inevitably makes countries in the region popular dive sites, there is the risk that they will be adversely impacted by dive tourism if conservation measures are not introduced pro-actively.
To promote the protection and preservation of the marine environment, a new project called Green Fins is being rolled out in Thailand. An initiative of the Coordinating Body of the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA), United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), the Green Fins mission is “to protect and conserve coral reefs by establishing and implementing environmentally friendly guidelines to promote a sustainable diving tourism industry”.
With decades of sustained growth in Thailand’s economic and tourism development, the impact of human activity on coral reefs is apparent. In the past, human impact on Thailand’s coral reefs were primarily from unsustainable practices such as dynamite and poison fishing. While these factors have not disappeared altogether, the environmental impact from dive tourism is potentially of more significance now. For example, the island of Koh Tao, a diving Mecca off the coast of Chumphon Province and Thailand’s most popular diving destination for all dive beginners, accounts for approximately 30 per cent of all dive certificates issued around the world. With the large numbers of divers visiting this island and other diving hotspots, inexperienced divers, reef-walking snorkellers and underwater photographers, as well as dive boat anchors, cause direct physical damage to coral.
Images © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Image © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Human-induced climate change is also leading to changes in temperature and sea level which in turn are causing changes in reef communities, such as bleaching and disease. This makes it all the more important to reduce the impact people have on this fragile ecosystem. While climate change is inevitable, minimizing the impact from tourism-related activities can be more easily achieved.

Green Fins addresses the following environmental issues:
The lack of awareness among tourists, guides and tour boat operators of the adverse impact of improper recreational use of the marine environment
Anchor damage to reefs that have become popular year-round destinations for tour boats
LitteringThe expected outcomes of implementation of the Green Fins Programme are:
Increased awareness of good diving practices
Increased protective measures for coral reefs
Increased coral reef data and information at the selected sites
Improved coral reef health

Image © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Environmentally-friendly Dive OperatorsPlease click to view
The Phuket Marine Biological Centre (PMBC) and the Conservation Unit under the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DoMCR) have direct responsibility for coral reefs.
PMBC is coordinating Green Fins in Thailand and is facilitating the development of a network of environmentally friendly divers and dive operators. The programme was launched in Thailand on 29-30 May 2007. Seventy-seven (mostly foreign) diving companies and over 200 (mostly Thai) individuals from six provinces (Phuket, Krabi, Phang-nga, Satun, Trang and Surat Thani) are currently participating in the programme. Each has agreed to abide by the Green Fins Code of Conduct.

Image © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Project activities fall under three categories:
Awareness training
Reef protection and monitoring
Improving reef health
While diver-training courses such as PADI already emphasize how easy it is to disturb the sensitive marine environment, it is easy for divers to fall into poor habits. Green Fins awareness presentations remind participants to control their buoyancy and not touch marine life. Dive operators can reinforce these simple protocls with their guests.

Image © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Clear identification of impacts caused by tourism vis-à-vis natural causes is important for managing reefs. Green Fins participants help PMBC scientists monitor reef health by conducting surveys using Reef Watch or Reef Check protocols. Reef conditions such as depth, topography, type and coverage of coral, water visibility and species indicative of environmental conditions are recorded. For example, urchins, snapper, butterfly fish, sea cucumber are indicators of environmental health. Changes on reefs detected by Green Fins surveyors such as marine life die-offs have alerted scientists to new and emerging threats such as cold-water upwellings and crown of thorns starfish. Seventy sites are currently monitored by Green Fins.Special activities involving Green Fins participants are designed to protect and rehabilitate reefs.
Image © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Clean-ups are organized to collect and dispose of garbage accumulating on beaches and reefs. Participants may adopt reef sites. For example, as part of the Clean-up The World Weekend, Green Fins participants cleaned up the reefs at Racha Island, Phuket and the beach at Lanta Island, Krabi during September 14-16th 2007.

Image © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Raising and releasing giant clamsTheir populations are rapidly declining due to over-harvesting and water pollution.

Image © Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand
Installing mooring buoys and replacing damaged buoys to help keep boat anchors off coral beds. This activity involves the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plants Conservation (DoNP) and the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DoMCR)

Adopt Green Fins mission statement
Display adopted Green Fins agreement for dive operators
Adhere to “Green Fins’ Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines” and act as responsible role model for guests
Participate in regular underwater cleanups at dive operator selected sites
Participate in the development and implementation of a mooring buoy programme, and actively use moorings, drift or hand place anchors for boats
Prohibit the sale of corals and other marine life at the dive operation
Participate in regular coral reef monitoring, and report coral reef monitoring data to a regional coral reef database
Provide adequate garbage facilities on board facility’s vessel and deal with responsibly
Operate under a “minimum discharge” policy
Abide by all local, regional, national; and international environmental laws, regulations and customs
Provide guests with an explanation of Green Fins’ Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines” in pre-briefings (UNEP Multilingual pre-dive briefing handouts, multimedia, posters, videos, etc)
Provide training, briefings or literature for employees and guests regarding good environmental practices for snorkelling, diving, boating, marine wildlife interaction, and other marine recreation activities
Provide staff and guests with public awareness and environmental materials (books, pamphlets, fish ID books, etc.)
Provide guests with information on local marine protected areas, environmental rules and regulations
Promote strict “no touch” policy for all reef diving and snorkellingAdapted from The Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL) "Environmentally Friendly Standards for Dive Operations" Evaluation of the programme is done through assessments of the dive operators by guests, by the operators themselves, and by PMBC. Questions asked include the following;
How well did the dive operator adhere to Green Fins ‘Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines’ and act as responsible role model for guests?
Did the dive operator use mooring buoys on every dive, when available?
Did the dive operator sell or allow others to sell corals and other marine life at the shop?
How well did the dive/boat operator deal with garbage and solid waste?
Did the dive/boat operator abide by all local, regional, national and international environmental laws, regulations and customs?
Did the dive operator provide guests with an explanation of “Green Fins” ‘Friendly Diving and Snorkelling Guidelines’ in pre-dive briefings?
Did the dive operator provide other public awareness and environmental materials (books, pamphlets, fish ID books, etc.)?
Did the dive operator provide information on local marine protected areas, environmental rules and regulations?
Did the dive operator promote a strict “no touch” policy for all reef diving and snorkeling?
Please click to expand
In the second year of the programme in Thailand, Green Fins will work more closely with existing participants, and will evaluate and certificate dive operators based on the results of the assessments.
The Thai and English language website will be further developed to raise awareness and for the web site to function as a tool for on-going communication with Green Fin members.
HOW YOU CAN HELPDivers visiting Thailand can help save coral reefs by choosing to dive with companies that abide by the Green Fins Code of Conduct. In so doing they help promote environmentally-friendly businesses. Divers can learn about Reef Watch/Reef Check and volunteer to collect data. They may also participate in special activities such as reef clean-ups and the installation of mooring buoys.
SUSTAINING THE PROGAMMEIndividuals and organizations will in future be able to join a Green Fins Club. This will promote interest in the conservation of reefs. Funding support from the private sector will help fund activities and monitoring of the programme. Ultimately the success of the programme will depend on the extent to which it can be sustained.
Green Fins can eventually become a part of official Thailand Government marine conservation programmes, and so be supported through annual budgets and sustained through forward planning.
*Sources1 Tourism Authority of Thailand2 Department of Marine and Coastal Resources3 Coordinating Body of the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA)
THAILAND – ONE OF THE WORLD’S TOP-10 DIVE DESTINATIONSAlthough they are no longer a secret to the diving community, Thailand’s marine attractions remain among the best-loved in Asia. Here are some reasons why…Natural history
Undersea pinnacles host large pelagic fish, rays and whale sharks
Reefs feature a great diversity of corals, fish and other marine life, especially along the Andaman coastline
Feeding this diversity are mangrove forests, which protect coastlines, and serve as nurseries for marine fish and other animals
Sea grass beds stretching along the Andaman coastline from Ranong to Satun, as well as in the Gulf of Thailand, provide critical habitat for dugongs and marine turtles
REEF STABILITY AND HEALTHThailand reefs are more stable than reefs in some other parts of Asia. The impact of the 2004 tsunami were limited to 13 per cent of Thailand's reefs.
Dynamic Change of Coral Reefs in the Andaman Sea, ThailandFindings from a study undertaken by the Phuket Marine Biological Center in Phuket, Thailand to monitor the long-term status of coral reefs in the Andaman Sea, Thailand and the pattern of dynamic change of the reefs and causes of change.
Proportions of live/dead coral cover provide a visual indicator of reef health in the Andaman Sea.
Please click to expand
Sixty study sites were grouped into 3 regions.
North – offshore Transect sites at Surin Islands group and the Similan Islands group
Central – near shore Transect sites in Phuket (at North and South Patong) and Phi Phi Islands
South – offshoreTransect sites at the Adang-Rawi Islands groupData collected from permanently marked transects on the upper reef slopes at these 60 locations revealed the following findings.
30% were unaffected with live cover either remaining stable or steadily increasing until present
20% of reef sites showed damage from environmental factors followed by good recovery
31.7% showing damage and little or no recovery
18.3% of sites were damaged by the tsunami and are predicted to show recovery within the next 3-10 years if conditions remain favourable for reef growth.ACCESSIBILITY AND INFRASTRUCTURE
Thailand’s position at the geographic crossroads of Asia makes it both a travel hub and destination. The marine realm is very accessible with international and domestic connections to dive take-off points at Phuket, Ranong, Krabi, Trang, Satun and Koh Samui.
Diving in Thailand is possible year-round, with Andaman Sea sites accessible during November to May, and Gulf of Thailand sites available in other months.
A plethora of registered dive businesses makes organizing dive tours easy, certification possible for beginners, and specialty instruction (e.g. deep water, wreck, nitrox diving) available to advanced divers. A Google search on the words “diving courses Thailand” returns 2,060,000 links.
Story by Antony J. Lynam
RELATED LINKSGREEN FINS THAILAND http://www.greenfins-thailand.org
COBSEA Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia web site at http://www.cobsea.org/activities/coralreef_sub/activities_greenfins.html
Coastal Clean-Up Day in Thailand http://www.cobsea.org/activities/activites_coralreef_coastal%20cleanup.htmlCoordinating Body of the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA), United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP)http://www.cobsea.org/activities/coralreef_sub/activities_greenfins.html
World Resources Institute web sitehttp://www.wri.org
A map of global coral diversity is downloadable from the World Resources Institute web sitehttp://images.wri.org/map_rrsea_01_large.jpg
Contact informationGreen Fins Project Phuket Marine Biological Center (PMBC) 51 Sakdidaj Rd., Vichai, Muang, Phuket 83000, Thailand Tel: +66 (0) 76 391 128 Fax: +66 (0) 76 391 127 E-mail: info@greenfins-thailand.org
COMPANIES PARTICIPATING IN GREEN FINS THAILAND Please click to view ACKNOWLDEGEMENTS News Room sincerely thanks the Phuket Marine Biological Center (PMBC) for the enthusiastic support and kind assistance in providing information and images for this feature.

Royal Beauty At Doi Angkhang

One of the coldest places in Thailand, Doi Angkhang in Chiang Mai, is renowned as a scenic wonderland of orchards, flowers and forests. The area attracts tourists to enjoy the chilly beauty of this picture-perfect valley in the mountains 1,400 metres above sea-level. Here, the ever-present influence of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Rama IX, can be sensed at the Royal Agricultural Station Angkhang which has done so much to effect the greening of the valley, bringing agricultural affluence and a better quality of life to the ethnic people there.

Royal InterventionIt was not always such an attractive place to live. In the 1960s, Doi Angkhang was remote, isolated, with no roads and off limits to outsiders. Its occupants — refugees from Yunnan in China and Black Musers — grew opium, peaches and rice, living in poverty with no proper access to education or medical treatment.
King Bhumibol learnt about Doi Angkhang while travelling nearby in 1969. “As we had a helicopter, the King decided to fly to the top of the mountain to see for himself,” explained His Serene Highness Prince Bhisadej Rajani, Chairman and Director of the Royal Project Foundation. “There were poppies and peach trees, but the hillsides were extensively deforested through slash and burn cultivation.”
It was time for intervention. The King purchased land to set up the first research station for temperate fruit, vegetables, trees and flowers. According to Prince Bhisadej, “His Majesty asked us to find temperate fruit to grow on Angkhang, because he thought that income from the fruit would be higher than from poppies.”
It was. The Royal Project persuaded two or three families to grow some fruit. “We helped them cultivate the fruit, harvest and sell it. They earned a lot of money. Once word got around about the income coupled with the King’s influence, everyone wanted to grow fruit,” recalls Prince Bhisadej. “After that it was easy.”
Today, the Royal Agricultural Station Angkhang is the flagship for the Royal Projects, and the premier research station in Thailand for temperate fruits, testing new strains and cultivating fruit saplings for extension throughout the Royal Projects.
Other goals set by King Bhumibol are also evident. The hillsides are covered in new forests and agricultural plots that have helped eliminate poppy cultivation; four schools provide education for children; a small medical centre keeps everyone healthy; and there are now good roads to the outside world.
Flower GardensTourists love to visit Doi Angkhang to experience the cold weather (it can dip below zero in December and January), and to enjoy the scenery and burgeoning plant life. The Royal Agricultural Station Angkhang is actually a research station for temperate climate fruit. During the winter, temperate fruit trees shed their leaves and plants do not bloom. “Visitors used to complain that the trees were dying and there was nothing to see,” says Prince Bhisadej, who decided to introduce something for tourists “to see.”The result is a number of beautiful flower and plant gardens at the Royal Station that are cultivated to provide blooms throughout the year:

Garden 80 — named for Prince Bhisadej’s age (which is now 86) is decorated with short lived plants

Scented Garden — aromatic plants and herbs

Rhododendron and Azalea Garden — beautiful temperate plants

English Roses — half-bred roses from England, best seen in March-April

Temperate Flower House — a beautifully decorated greenhouse rich in plants with a coffee corner for visitors

Bonsai Garden — award-winning, long-lived bonsai plants and rock garden

Plus many demonstration plots for flowers and vegetables, as well as a small tea house where visitors can taste the oolong and green teas grown on Doi Angkhang
Military BaseA small military base right on the border with Burma next to Nor Lae village provides security for Doi Angkhang, and is also a popular scenic spot. The soldiers are friendly, welcoming visitors and providing insights into the tough life of being a Thai soldier on border patrol.
Ethnic Villages Khob Dong village is home to the Black Muser community, originally from Tibet, who have abandoned their opium-growing ways in favour of better incomes from fruit, flowers and vegetables. Visitors can see how the Musers live, and purchase gifts like grass bracelets and musical instruments from the village handicraft centre.
Nor Lae village is home to the Palong from Burma, who walked for seven days to Doi Angkhang when they first heard about the Royal Project. The tribal head met and petitioned King Bhumibol to be allowed to stay, and a place was duly set aside for them at Nor Lae.
“They used to grow tea and opium,” says Prince Bhisadej. “Now they grow tea and organic vegetables. The Palong have never grown vegetables before, so they follow everything we tell them about organic farming.”

EducationFollowing King Bhumibol’s wish to provide education, there are now four schools on Doi Angkhang teaching Muser, Palong and Yunnanese children from kindergarten to secondary level. A senior teacher at Khob Dong primary school, Kru Riem, epitomizes the educational commitment required. The first time she met King Bhumibol, he told her that he was too far away and asked her to teach the children on his behalf. Originally from Bangkok, she has been at the school for 24 years, refusing to leave since receiving the royal request.
Junior GuidesNine years ago, Kru Riem started the Junior Guide Programme, training school children to show tourists around their villages at weekends and holidays. It was a popular special activity that helped the children gain confidence to talk to adults, and to develop interpersonal skills.
When the Ministry of Education introduced curriculum changes to include one local subject for upcountry schools, Kru Riem proposed the Junior Guide Programme. It was accepted as a compulsory subject in the new curriculum. Makoo Techasophon of Angkhang Nature Resort and Royal Project staff were roped in as part-time teachers.
Today, Junior Guides are stationed at their villages every weekend, ready and eager to show tourists about life in the village. However, tourists are not allowed to take children outside the villages in their cars. There is no charge for the service, but donations can be placed in a special box to be split up every month — 60 per cent shared among the Junior Guides, 40 per cent going to the schools to fund summer camps and field trips.
Reforestation Restoring forests to denuded hills is an important goal of the Royal Project. Doi Angkhang’s reforestation programme began in 1982, in a cooperative effort between Thailand’s agricultural university, Kasetsart, and the Taiwan government, with technical support from National Taiwan University. Various temperate tree types were tried until five fast-growing species were found to respond well to the Angkhang climate — Taiwan acacia, Griffith’s ash, Camphor tree, Fragrant maple, and Paulonia.
To date, 681 rai of land is under new forest cover, with a further 118 rai extended as community forest to be looked after by the villagers, who can cut down and utilize the wood, provided they replant the trees. Visitors can discover the beauty of the forested slopes with treks along ten marked nature trails, all just over a kilometre long.
The wood processing plant is a tribute to sustainability, one of King Bhumibol’s most popular themes. Pieces of wood from trimming the trees, dead wood and branches are converted into charcoal in the factory kiln. Smoke from the kiln is cooled to collect the condensate, which is later distilled into wood vinegar that is used to protect trees and plants from insects and to reduce farm smells among other uses.
Good wood, including wood purchased from the community forest, is dried and shaved into straight pieces used to make outdoor furniture, boxes, baskets and other items that are in the process of development. Shavings from the wood processing are mixed with leaves and vegetation to make compost for the organic farms. Visitors are welcome to see the production process, or purchase wooden items from the Royal Project shop in the Flower Garden.
Buffaloes EverywhereSmiling buffaloes seem to be everywhere. Initially King Bhumibol donated two pairs of buffaloes to the Musers to help in their rice cultivation. However, they earned so much money from temperate climate produce, they stopped growing rice and buy it instead. Now the buffaloes having nothing to do but eat and multiply. The Musers refuse to sell or even eat them “because they are a gift from the King,” as one Muser farmer explained.ProduceA variety of temperate produce is currently grown on Doi Angkhang:

Fruit — strawberries, kiwi, peaches, apricots, raspberries, pears, plums and persimmons
Vegetables — butterhead, red coral lettuce, radishes, rhubarb, artichokes, kale and chayote
Herbs — chamomile, lavender, lemon thyme, oregano, parsley
Beverages — oolong and green tea, arabica coffee
Flora — roses, chrysanthemums
MarketingThe agricultural development of Doi Angkhang succeeds because the Royal Project guarantees to purchase all fruit, vegetables and flowers at good prices, provided they meet set standards of quality. Agricultural areas, especially the organic farms, are inspected by Royal Project staff prior to harvest. Then the produce is taken to the pre-cooling factory in the Royal Station, where it is checked, graded, packed, and stored in a cooler ready to transport to the Royal Project production plant in Chiang Mai.
Currently, Royal Project produce is sold under the Doi Kham brand to leading hotels in Chiang Mai and Bangkok, restaurants, and to corporate entities like Thai Airways International. The airline is a strategic partner of the Royal Project and its largest customer, using fruit and vegetables in its inflight menus, airport restaurants and outside catering. The general public can also buy through supermarkets like Tesco Lotus, Tops, Big C, Carrefour, Golden Place as well as Doi Kham shops.
However, as of December 2007, this produce will be sold under the Royal Project brand and through Royal Project shops, replacing the Doi Kham brand. A launch of the new branding will take place during the Royal Project Festival at Chiang Mai University, 13-16 December 2007.
In Father’s FootstepsMakoo Techasophon has spent over ten years on Doi Angkhang as general manager of Angkhang Nature Resort, learning much about the lives of people inhabiting the mountain and the important role King Bhumibol has played in improving those lives. To give visitors a better understanding of life on Doi Angkhang, two years ago Makoo launched his “To Follow Father’s Footsteps” programme, which he conducts himself with support from staff at the Royal Station.
Taking groups for two days and a night, the programme is basically a walking tour through villages and agricultural areas, ending at the Royal Station, and talking with people along the way about their lives and how they met King Bhumibol. “I tell my groups that the King has walked everywhere on Doi Angkhang. We are merely following in his footsteps,” explains Makoo.
The tour begins at Khob Dong school, where Kru Riem introduces her children who accept donations from the visitors and then perform some ethnic dances. It then heads to Khob Dong to meet Ja Mor, the Muser witchdoctor, who has drunk tea with King Bhumibol and is one of his most ardent supporters.
Occasionally quite strenuous, the walk continues through the development areas of strawberries and organic vegetables to Nor Lae village, and a possible meeting with the headman who originally petitioned King Bhumibol for the Palong tribe to stay on Angkhang. Following a picnic lunch of northern Thai food, the walk continues through tea plantations and forests, ending at the Royal Station. Not everything is done at once, but planned in advance depending on how much the group wants to see.
Makoo does not charge for the tour. It is his personal tribute to the work of King Bhumibol. Although aimed primarily at groups, during the December and January high season the tour is run regularly for individual visitors who really want to know more about the King Bhumibol’s work and are prepared to follow in his footsteps.
In-Flight MealsTo celebrate King Bhumibol’s 80th birthday on 5 December 2007, Thai Airways International has created special onboard menus using Royal Project produce to be served on all international flights departing from Bangkok in the 4-6 December period. Passengers in all classes will be able to enjoy such dishes as grilled prawn with apple and orange salad, marinated tabtim fish with spicy lemongrass, carrots and French beans, and Royal Project chayote gateau.
Royal Project Festival13-16 December 2007 At the Chiang Mai University Convention HallFruit, vegetables and a variety of other produce grown at Royal Project centres throughout northern Thailand will be on sale at the Royal Project Festival 2007 to be held at Chiang Mai University Convention Hall, 13-16 December. An extensive exhibition of King Bhumibol’s work in the Royal Project will also be on view.
Angkhang Gourmet TourTo promote visits by tourists to Doi Angkhang during the warm season, the Royal Project plans two gourmet tours — at the end of both February and March 2008. Each tour for up to 80 persons will be three days, two nights and feature a special gourmet meal prepared by a guest chef, a briefing on the work of the Royal Agricultural Station Angkhang and a guided tour organized by Royal Project staff.
The cost is 14,000 baht inclusive of return airfare, accommodation, and gourmet meal. Norbert Kostner, Executive Chef of The Oriental Bangkok, will create a special meal for the February tour. Interested persons should call the Royal Project’s public relations office tel: +66 (0) 53 810 765-9 ext. 104.
Web site: http://www.angkhang.com/ (Thai only)
Accommodation on Doi Angkhang
The Royal Agricultural Station Angkhang offers accommodation in hillside bungalows — 12 bungalows for two persons, six bungalows for six persons, and a large bungalow for 47. Two restaurants serve food grown within the Royal Project.
Accommodation enquiries: Tel: +66 (0) 53 450 107-9 ext. 113/114
Angkhang Nature Resort, operated by Amari Hotels & Resorts, provides three-star accommodation, with 72 rooms in bungalows affording either garden views or mountain views. Located next to Angkhang Station, the resort was voted Best Eco Resort in Asia in 2000 by Travel Asia magazine. With the cool climate, the rooms have no need of air-conditioning, instead offering electric blankets to keep guests warm.
Accommodation enquiries: Tel: +66 (0) 53 450 110E-mail: reservations@ankhang.amari.com
Getting There
Doi Angkhang is located on the Thai-Burma border, 160 kms north of Chiang Mai city in Fang District. This involves a three-hour drive with very steep roads up the mountain that cannot accommodate large tour buses.
On request, Angkhang Nature Resort offers a pick-up service by van from Amari Rincome Hotel or Chiang Mai airport, at a cost of 5,000 baht for the return journey.Alternatively, visitors can make arrangements with various travel agencies in Thailand that offer guided Doi Angkhang tours:
Local Agents: Asian Trails, Diethelm Travel, Destination Asia, Asian Horizons
Domestic Agents: NS Travel, Proud Holidays, Nice Spot Holidays, Baan Tour, Blue Sky Travel, Travel Smart

The Joyous Time in Thailand

The Joyous Time in Thailand
Story by Kullwadee Sumarlnop
It’s New Year again, the last and perhaps the most joyous time of the year. For many people, December seems to be the month you are most often preoccupied with something else but work. When the date on calendar changes to the first of December, that’s the day you start thinking about your holidays.
In this land of smiles, folks are getting ready to enjoy this year-end long holiday. Like the other two New Year occasions in Thailand – that is, Songkran, the Thai traditional New Year in mid April when people get splashed of water, and the Chinese New Year approximately in early February for Chinese descendants, -- Thai people will take this opportunity to return to their hometowns, spending the valuable time with their loved ones. It is the same tradition many westerners do during Christmas. However, in this part of the world, it is done in the oriental manner.
In a rural area, locals gather together to celebrate by feasting on food, drinking and enjoying folk plays and other fun activities. Some folks might hang out drinking homemade whisky from dusk to dawn. In the mean time, in a more traditional way, elder people will prepare themselves to wake up early to welcome the first day of the brand new year, hoping that it will make a smooth run for the whole year. So they, along with their descendants, will rise before the crack of dawn to prepare tasty foods, which will be offered to monks to mark the auspicious year. After that, they will head to temples near their houses to attend the morning service of monks preaching the sermon and giving blessing.
Back into some crowded cosmopolitans, count down celebrators are predictably going to have fun to their fullest! Certainly, in a never sleeping metropolis like Bangkok, people both Thais and foreigners will flock at landmarks of the city on New Year eve. The Tourism Authority of Thailand organizes the walking streets in front of Central World Plaza all the way through Silom Road and up to Siam Square – another event will be held the platform at Sanam Luang near the Grand Palace.
Besides the regular countdown festivities in major attraction sites like Chiang Mai, Phuket or Samui, the Sunrise Delight Festival at the Mekong River’s border provinces is no less interesting! The aforementioned event will be held in the northeastern provinces of Ubon Ratchathani, Amnajcharoen and other provinces along Mekong River. After all, watching the golden glimmer of the bronze sunlight coming up from the horizon of the ancient river might simply be the most joyous activity.

SEA of Mist : Amazing Wonders in Thailand

If traveling to discover nature is like taking a journey to fulfill your life, then to witness a natural phenomenon such as the sea of mist would not be different from a reward for the travelers, who only wish to savor its spectacular sight. Seeing the sea of mist is considered a sort of luck, as the weather is unpredictable, there is no guarantee as to what you will get.
Waiting to see the sea of mist in the morning is like waiting for the stage curtain to unveil. As the pale sunlight reveals the vast mass of vapor over the forest, the sun appears over the horizon, then comes the moment you witness the sea of mist in its full splendor.
The sea of mist is extraordinarily beautiful in winter, especially in the North. However, it is also possible to see it in some parts of the North East and Central Thailand as well.
There are many places you can go to see the sea of mist.The North
Popular spots to see the sea of mist in the North are:
Huai Nam Dang National Park, Chiang MaiThere is no need for trekking to see the sea of mist here. From December to February, you will also get to see blooming Sakura as a bonus.
Phu Chi Fa, Chiang RaiThis is the number one classic spot for sea of mist in Thailand. From the cliff, you can see the breathtaking view of the sea of mist spreading over Laos. In addition, Doi Pha, which is only 20 km. away is another well-known spot to see the sea of mist.
Mae Noei National Park, TakIt is the perfect spot from October to February. Nearby tourist attractions are Mae Usu Cave and natural hot springs.
Mokoju Peak, Mae Wong National Park, Kamphaeng Phet With some effort, you will get through a long and difficult trekking to see the picture perfect sea of mist. Peak season is from November to February.
Khao Kho, PhetchabunThe viewpoint is conveniently located in the resort among the mountains.
Doi Hua Mot, Amphoe Umphang, TakNamtok Thi Lo Cho (Falling Rain Waterfall) and rafting activities are also a must.
Phu Thap Boek, PhetchabunHere, you can put up your tents and wait for the sea of mist in the morning and the “stars on earth” at night.Other viewpoints in the North are:
Doi ,Si Nan National Park, Nan
Khun Chae National Park, Chiang Rai
Chae Son National Park, Lampang
Chiang Dao National Park, Chiang Mai
Doi Khun Than National, Lamphun
Doi Phu Kha National Park, Nan
Doi Luang National Park, Phayao
Taksin Maharat National Park, Tak
The North East
Pha Nok Aen Cliff, Phu Kradueng National Park, Loei. From October to January.See pine woods, waterfalls, and maple leaves changing colors.
Phu Reua National Park, Loei. From December to January.A natural rock garden and morning dew awaits you.
Pha Taem National Park, Ubon Ratchatani. From November to December.The place where the sun rises before anywhere else in Thailand.
Na Heao National Park, Loei. From November to December.
Hin Chang Si Viewpoint, Nam Phong National Park, Khon Kaen. From October to December.
Phu Phan National Park, Sakon Nakorn. From November to February.
Central Thailand
Kaeng Krachan National Park, Phetchaburi. All year round.
Khao Laem National Park, Kanchanaburi. From November to January.
Srinagarindra Dam, Kanchanaburi. From September to February.
Pang Sida National Park, Sa Kaeo. From October to December.
Phu Toei National Park, Suphan Buri. From September to November.
Kui Buri National Park, Prachuap Khiri Khan. From October to February.
For more information on the sea of mist at the above national parks,please visit www.dnp.go.th

Shopping in Thailand

Shopping in Thailand
Story by Cameron Cooper
All the Stuff That's Fit to Sell Among its countless other joys and wonders, Thailand is a great place to shop -- particularly in Bangkok where the variety of retail outlets and goods is staggering. Often you'll find some good quality products on sale in department stores for half as much as at home. Likewise, there are bargains in more down-to-earth places -- open market stalls.
At the corner of First and Third: From Handicrafts to Fine Watches With Thailand's rapid development over the last 25 years or so, (and endured the socio-economic growing pains that accompany such an explosion) an unusual set of circumstances have emerged. While Bangkok is modern with large factories, tall buildings and an extensive freeway system, much of the countryside looks the same as it has for the last 60 years or so. There are wooden houses, people cooking rice over clay charcoal braziers and harvesting rice by hand.
This polarized economy gives rise to diverse tastes and capabilities. Those at the top of the chain seek out luxury cars, designer clothes and watches, and fine foods, giving rise to countless shops that offer these. As well is a huge number of lower end income people who produce traditional handicrafts in their villages. The government has even launched an economic assistance program to encourage and develop these cottage industries and for the people of Thailand to get back to their cultural roots and purchase these items. This all means the range of goods on sale in Thailand is huge.
The Same All Over Thailand
The entrepreneurial spirit looms large in Thailand. As tourism has grown, vendors all over the country have taken note of what buyers like. Say the necklace you bought from a northern hill tribe village in Chiang Mai might find their way to the souvenir shops in the southern island of Phuket. This is convenient for the visitor who only visits one region of the country. It also means there has been a bit of homogenisation, and in the end, you have craftspeople all over the country copying each others' designs. Don't be surprised to find that what you are buying may not be indigenous to the region.
Bargaining spread eastward from the Middle East centuries ago, so the theory goes. It persists in Thailand in open market places, but unlike in India or the Middle East, the prices start lower and discount less. Unless they've got you pegged for a real greenhorn, most vendors will quote a price about 40% or so higher than what they are willing to settle for.
The Method:
If you see something you like, ask how much (all vendors know this much English). They will usually produce a calculator and punch in the amount they want (feel free to use the calculator to convert into your own currency if you get confused). Hit clear, punch in your counter offer and hand it back. This goes on for a bit until you either reach a mutually agreeable price or a stalemate. Feel free to walk away at any time. Sometimes this gets you a last lower price, sometimes not, but don't feel you are obgligated to buy just because you started the process. Decide what the item is worth to you and if you can get it at that price, then great. If not, say goodbye and try elsewhere. You might find later that you didn't really have anywhere in your house to put that wooden elephant anyway.
Important Note: This is not a time for hostility. Sometimes in the course of bargaining, some people get carried away and get a wee bit aggressive with the vendor, which makes them feel like the customer is accusing them of cheating them. This will not bring a lower price or make for a pleasant experience. The best way to get what you want is to smile and make a game of it you're in holiday and this is part of the fun you don't get to experience in the West. In fact, if you really want to have a good time, hand back the calculator with a lower offer than your last one, with a big smile on your face. This usually engenders a spirit of goodwill and playfulness and can go a long way to lowering the price nothing like laughter to make new friends.
Because Thailand is such a vibrant free market, and regulatory bodies can't really keep up, you do have to keep your eyes open concerning quality. Many street vendors sell 'knock-off' goods -- fake rolexes, designer clothes copies, that sort of thing.
Now, you should be aware that this practice is illegal and there have been ongoing clampdowns in several areas. Whether you choose to buy these products or not, be aware that they are (with the possible exception of T-shirts) of substandard quality. Bit pretentious really, buying a fake Rolex that in the end fools nobody. You have to square it with your own conscience (and your own taste).
If you do choose to break the law and buy knockoffs (and the quality varies enormously), examine the items very closely. Don't be in a hurry and don't be pressured. If the vendor's goods are better quality than average (as they will often claim), they will want you to make a thorough examination. And did we mention that it is illegalω
These shops are in a category by themselves. It is impossible to walk down a major street in Bangkok without passing several tailor shops, with a man out front (usually of Indian origins) trying to persuade you that you need two or three new suits.
Some of the prices seem too good to be true, and they are, in a way. For one thing, the low prices you see on the board outside are usually for a quality of material that you simply wouldn't be caught dead wearing. Also, the man measuring you is not actually a tailor, he is a broker the orders are filled by "sweat shops" nearby, so the quality is not as personalised as you may have been led to believe. So is it worth buying a suite It can be, but you have to keep your eyes open.
Here are a few tips:
Give the polyester a miss and go for higher quality material from the outset. Try the flame test on a small sample of the material; if it's 100% wool or cotton, it will burn, not melt. If it melts, it's either synthetic or a synthetic blend.
Once you have chosen your material, insist on taking a small sample with you so that when you return you can check to see they haven't substituted a cheaper fabric.
Don't go for the 24-hour turnaround. Give yourself and the tailor plenty of time. Come back for a second fitting to make fine adjustments in your suit.
Put down as small a deposit as you can bargain so there is a good incentive for the tailor to make you happy before receiving full payment.
When you do collect your clothes, examine the jacket closely - these are the hardest items to make so that they hang nicely (trousers are easy). If it doesn't make you look good, politely but firmly insist on further alterations.
Bangkok offers the widest range of shopping options in the country, from market stalls to air-conditioned mega-malls as big as the ones at home.
Many people are surprised at the sheer scope of malls in Bangkok, but in their current form they have been here for decades and are a popular place for Thais to spend their weekends -- you'll see whole families browsing around in air-con comfort. Some of them even have amusement parks or zoos to add to the shopping experience.
You can find pretty much anything you'll find at malls back home, and in many cases, the prices will be lower. Most have a main large store with other shops as part of a shopping complex. All accept major credit cards. Opening hours are usually until 9pm on weekdays and 10pm on weekends, including Sundays. There is usually a fully-fledged mall within a few minute's walk of any major hotel. In fact, you can pick just about any spot in the city of Bangkok.
One thing to note is that you are serviced a bit differently from the west. When you look at an item, a salesperson will appear out of nowhere and begin following you around. This is normal in Thailand -- just like the people hover around putting ice into your drink at Thai restaurants, they are there to assist you. Try not to be annoyed and just ignore the person until you want something.
When you do choose a purchase, you usually don't take it to a counter yourself, but hand it with the charge card or cash to the person who has been trailing you for the last half hour. You can either follow them to the counter, or stay where you are -- they always come back with the right change and your neatly bagged item.
A couple of noteworthy malls near the Siam Skytrain Stop:
Mah Boon Khrong
Also known as MBK, this massive shopping complex consists of the Tokyu department store and more than 1,000 specialised shops -- most of them owner operated -- with stuff ranging from mobile phones, electronic gadgetry, local designer clothing, endless quality knockoffs, old and new camera gear (the best place in the city to get your cameras repaired or to pick up rare equipment) and countless other consumer delights. The complex also houses movie theatres, a bowling alley, and as with most of Bangkok loads of places to eat. At the smaller stalls, be prepared to bargain.
Siam Square
This is Bangkok's pre-mall shopping haven and nearly forty years on, remains popular, especially among young and trendy Thai teens. It is outdoors, a sort of shopping village, consisting of about a dozen narrow streets (some of them pedestrianised) and lined with small shops and restaurants. Many of these are name-brand boutiques (usually with better prices than you would pay at home) and independent clothing and curio designers. This is probably the trendiest spot in town to shop if you want to pick up cutting-edge stuff from America, Europe and Japan.
It is a popular hangout for Thai teens. In any case, it is a great place for a bit of people watching. The place also has loads of ice creams parlours, fast food, Thai treats, a Hard Rock Cafe and three old-style movie theatres -- much more pleasant and grand than modern ciniplexes. A good way to satisfy your consumer desires and take in a little modern-day Thai culture.
Siam Center and Siam Discovery
Across the road from Siam Square, and in some ways an extension of it, this air-conditioned mall has scores of shops in the upper end fashion, including clothes and other trendy youth pursuits like rollerblading and other sporting shops. Alongside this are electronics shops, (genuine) watches, sunglasses, furniture, music shops, and most other things you'd expect to find -- most of it top drawer stuff. Be sure to cross the pedestrian bridge to the attached Siam Discovery Center, a six floor building with a different shopping theme on each floor plus plenty of western and Thai restaurants.
Siam Paragon
Occupying more than 20 acres of land, Siam Paragon is one of the biggest and most elegant shopping centers in Asia. Dubbed as "the Pride of Bangkok", it is the largest upscale shopping mall in Thailand. Historically, the shopping mall is located on the former site of the Siam Intercontinental Hotel whose lease ended in 2002. Open in late 2005, it features a vast range of retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters, luxury car showrooms, an opera house, a supermarket and an aquarium.
Bangkok's Open Markets:
Khaosan Road, BanglamphuBackpacker central has a lot of market-style stalls selling all sorts from beaded necklaces to wooden elephants, to weapons that would frighten a Ninja. In spite of this being the budget traveller's haven, the prices are not necessarily the cheapest in town. Trok Mayom, a small alleyway running parallel to Khaosan is a great place for custom leather crafts for a personalised wallet embossed with your name, or saddlebags for your Harley back home, or anything else your fertile imagination can dream up.
Chatuchak Weekend MarketThis massive market, at the end of the northern Skytrain line of Morchit Station, has everything you ever imagined. The creativity of the whole country is distilled here. Leatherwork, lamps, curios, sculptures, furniture, Japanese action figurines - name it and you'll find it here. Such is its fame that you have to bargain hard to get a good price.
Chatuchak is only open on Saturday and Sunday (many of the vendors have regular jobs during the week), it can get pretty hot and crowded here, so pace yourself and don't expect to cover the whole place. To make the most of it, pick up a copy of the Nancy Chandler Shopping Map to Bangkok, which lists off all the sections of the market and what you can expect to find there.
Suan Lum Night BazaarThis market is similar to Chatuchak (see above), but with less variety as it is still quite new. Nonetheless, it has a wide range of stuff, is conveniently located near the Sala Daeng Skytrain Station, and has a more open and comfortable design, plus a big beer and food garden with entertainment. Opens in the late afternoon, and closes at about 11 pm.
Patpong Tucked in on the main road of the city's most famous red-light district, this market has mostly handicrafts and knockoffs in the way of t-shirts, watches, binoculars (not that you need them on this road), luggage, DVDs and more. A novel place to shop and very popular with tourists, but the vendors pitch their prices very high here, so bargain hard -- though the vendors are pretty hard to bend here. If you can't get what you want, clear the way for some other mug -- there are plenty behind you.
Sukhumvit RoadAlong the main hotel strip of Sukhumvit Road from soi 11 to soi 21 are countless street stalls (more sparse in the daytime). On sale here are similar items to Patpong (see above), and the prices tend to be a bit more reasonable. A good place to get T-shirts with funny slogans on them.
ChinatownAround the intersections of Siphon Han and Phahurat roads in Chinatown you'll find a bizarre range of shopping opportunities. It's a joy to poke around in the daytime and see what you can find. Guns, musical equipment, bicycle shops, and just about anything else that can be sold appear in groups of three to ten shops carrying the same items, ensuring you can get the best price going. Nearby are of course loads of Chinese restaurants (most with excellent and cheap seafood). A great way to spend an idle day of discovery.

Tennis ATP Thailand Open

Tennis ATP Thailand Open
Tennis ATP Thailand OpenDate : 22-30 September 2008Venue : Impact Arena, Muang Thong Thani See many renowned tennis pros that come to compete in this tournament.Contact: Events Promotion DivisionTel : 0 2250 5500 Ext : 3475-79Website : www.thailandopen.org, www.atptennis.com www.tourismthailand.org

Bangkok Film Festival 2008

Bangkok Film Festival 2008
Date September 23rd to 30th 2008
Venue SF World Cinema, CentralWorld
and Pullman Hotel
Partner The Federation of National Film Associations of Thailand
31/9 UMG Theater 2nd Fl., Royal City Avenue, New Phetchaburi Road,
Bangkapi, Huay Khwang, Bangkok 10310, Thailand
E-mail: thainationalfilm@thaimail.com
Website: www.thainationalfilm.com
Tel. 66 2 641 5917 Fax 66 2 641 5919
September 23rd 2008 Opening Reception at SF World Cinema, CentralWorld
September 26th 2008 Red Carpet and Gala Screening at SF World Cinema, CentralWorld
September 28th 2008 Kinnaree Award Ceremony at Pullman Hotel
September 30th 2008 Closing Ceremony at SF World Cinema, CentralWorld
September 27th- 29th 2008 Seminars at Pullman Hotel
September 23rd- 30th 2008 Screening at SF World Cinema, CentralWorld
Official Website: www.bangkokfilm.org (will activate soon) For more detail : Please contact by phone no. 02 641 5917 or FAX. no. 02 641 5919 or
e-mail: thainationalfilm@thaimail.com
Website: www.thainationalfilm.com

Nasarn school rambutan festival 2008

Nasarn school rambutan festival 2008
“Famous school rambutan,rich of mine,best honey,amazing Meng fish,great cave,beautiful river fall,large national park”
City government of Nasarn and private company pround to present “Nasarn school rambutan festival 2008” from 18 July to 26 July.The festival content with many activities such as plant car caravan,fruits garden contest,Nasarn rambutan contest,foods contest,beautiful cows contest and 4X4 driving skill improve lessons(Free!!!).This will be the largest of gathering 4X4 lover club and plus the off-road racing at next to the river Shwang.
From the train station of Nasarn in Surachthani province of Thailand that is the best market place for fruits,because this rail wayis connect to other provinces around Thailand include the great capital Bangkok.
Nasarn school rambutan is very famous,so its export this to other provinces around Thailand.
Nasarn school rambutan first borned in 2480,by Mr.K Wong Chinese business man from Malaysia come to Thaland to run his mine business in Ban muang rae and Khun tong lang.Mr. K Wong was brought rambutans from Peenung province to eat and he accidently spit its seeds to the ground,so the seeds become trees.After that Mr.K Wong closed his vusiness and sold his land to the Government of education of Thaland,and the government turn the land into a school.A school from Nasarn temple.Back then the rambutans tree was grow perfectly in that land.Growth by nature until its large and become school rambutan first tree.The genesis of rambutan is growth beautifully with red skin and green short hairs around it.
Mr. Yang Pongthip principle of Nasarn school in that time.He is the first one who try to breed this rambutan and sell it,with hope that will become the economy fruits of Nasarn.And its become famous finally as he predict in first place.But when the great storm on 2505 damaged at Taloompook bay,the school rambutan genesis was heavy wounded.So,they took its to breed in school garden.
In 2512,his majesty king Phumipol Adulayadech had visited the people in Surachthani province and give the name of this rambutan as “Nasarn school rambutan” he said majesticly “This is a good name”.So its become this name since then.
This festival have been arrange for over 10 years,it’s a big festival of Nasarn.There’re many shop that sell product from fruits and farmer with less cost and there’ve a Miss rambutan contest.Special with 4X4 driving skill improve lessons(Free!!!).This will be the largest of gathering 4X4 lover club and plus the off-road racing at next to the river Shwang.(with co-operation of Government of Nasarn and P&T Media co,.)
For more information about 4X4 driving skill improves lessons tel. 085-9096089.The great festival had arise and you shouldn’t miss it.