Thailand is an intriguing country. Its rich cultural history is amazing by any standards. It is one of the countries in Asia which is predominantly Buddhist. The country is endowed with abundant natural landscapes comprising long coast line, plains, plateaus, hill ranges and bio-diversity. Thailand not only offers natural wonders for the tourist to enjoy but also cultural and religious practices that are phenomenal.
Doi Suthep-Pui National Park
The Doi Suthep-Pui National Park is an excellent place to spend quality time in. the park comprises forests and mountain ranges. The Huai Kaew waterfall is a sight to behold. The hill range hosts the Doi Sutep peak on which is situated the Wat Phra That Di Suthep. The temple is known for its golden pagoda that shines in all its glory against the sun.
Bridge on the River Kwai
One of the very popular movies of the 1950s, the Bridge on the River Kwai epitomized the cruelty of war. The River Kwai symbolizes the suffering undergone by prisoners of war under a cruel regime. A bridge was built on the River Kwai by prisoners of war. Thousands of them and laborers from nearby countries died during the construction. Thailand offers a visit to this river and the bridge it holds and the visit would be an amazing experience to learn that war serves no one.
National Museum of Royal Barges
Since Thailand is a constitutional monarchy royalty is very important to the Thai people. So, anything royalty does is considered good. Thai kings were connoisseurs of barges and their collection of barges is now housed in the National Museum of Royal Barges. The museum holds some interesting barges including Suphannahong in the shape of a mystical swan, the Ananta Nagaraj in the naga-shape, Narai Song Suban in the garuda shape and Anekchat Puchong.
The Grand Palace
From the time it was built sometime after 1782 the Grand Palace has housed the monarch of Thailand till 1925. In recent times the palace is used for ceremonial purposes.
The Grand Palace represents all that is uniquely Thai. The palace is presented in three zones – The Outer Court, The Middle Court and The Inner Court.
The Inner Court was the official residence of the King. The Middle Court houses the state buildings and residential buildings. The Outer Court is the most captivating with the presence of public buildings and royal offices and the Temple of Emerald Buddha. The Temple of Emerald Buddha (Phra Kaeo Morakot) is the sight to be seen. The statue is carved from green jade and placed amidst fresco paintings, sculptures and ornaments.
Thailand visa for Indians for tourism purposes is granted in two ways. A short-duration transit visa is granted when an applicant transits from Thailand with a confirmed return ticket to the country other than Thailand. The second way is to apply for a tourist visa at the Thai Embassy or Consulate-General in India. The filled up visa application form has to be accompanied by passport with 6 months validity, photograph, copy of return air ticket, proof of possessing at least 20,000 Baht. Tourist visa may be granted for 3 to 6 months validity. However, each stay will be permitted only up to 60 days.