Thailand is one of the friendliest countries in the world to visit but like all countries around world it has its only little quirks, unusual laws and some interesting facts.
Read about our travel tips before going to Thailand here.
Here are some fun facts about Thailand that I have listed for you to read.
Prostitution is Technically illegal
Yes, Prostitution is technically illegal in Thailand, but the law is very rarely enforced. Pattaya alone has over 27,000 sex workers and estimates for all of Thailand range up to and over 1 million sex workers.
Sex Toys and Internet Porn are illegal
Yes, as the heading suggests sex toys and internet porn are illegal.
Thai Means ‘Free’
In the Thai language, the word “Thai” means “free”. So, Thailand means “Land of the Free”.
Thailand was Once Called Siam
Thailand was actually called Siam throughout its history until 1939 and again between 1945 and 1949. In 1949, by official proclamation the name changed to Thailand.
Never been Colonised by Europeans
The European powers never colonized Thailand. With all of the other South east asian countries like Vietnam and Cambodia colonised by the french and Malaysia and Singapore been colonised the British.
This was some achievement.
Red Bull was Created in Thailand
Red Bull,the popular energy drink, was originally a brand in Thailand. In 1976, a local man called Chaleo Yoovidhya created a drink called Krating Daeng in Thailand, which means “red gaur” in English.
It became popular with the truck drivers and labourers. In 1984, Mateschitz co-founded Red Bull GmbH with Yoovidhya and turned it into an international brand.
Bangkok’s Full Name!
Although the city is known as ‘Krung Thep Maaha Nakhon’ in Thai, its full ceremonial name is:
“Krungthep Maha Nakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit”.
I think Bangkok is a lot easier to say. This is in the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest name of a place.
Elephants in Thailand
Today there are approximately 5,000 elephants in Thailand with 20% of all elephants in Thailand are believed to live in the northern province of Chang Mai.
But 150 years ago there were an estimated 100,000 elephants living in the country.
Cannot Touch a Person’s Head
In Thailand, you cannot touch a person’s head. Thais consider the head as a very sacred part of the body. You can only touch the head of a person who is within your immediate and extended family.
Otherwise, touching the head of others would only bring you trouble.
Beware Where you Booze
Don’t booze in places of worship or temples, public offices, education institutions, gas stations, hospitals, and public parks.
Without authorisation, those who break this law can receive up to six months of imprisonment and no more than a ฿10,000 fine.
Don’t Offend the king!
The King of Thailand is idolised and revered by everyone in Thailand, almost as a god-like symbol.
Thailand has some of the strictest lese majeste (injured majesty) laws in the world. Defaming or insulting The King is a criminal offence and you risk several years imprisonment under Thai law. This applies to foreigners as well.
You risk being arrested if you deface or even step on the currency (which has The King’s image on it).
It’s a Crime to Step on any Thai Currency
Yes, standing on Thai currency is a very serious offence as all their money features the Thai monarchy and as we have already stated that disrespecting the royal family is taken very seriously.
You Mustn’t Drive a Car Shirtless
It’s illegal to drive a car in Thailand topless. So if planning on driving a car in Thailand, but its worth bearing this in mind.
Thai People Do Smile a Lot
Thai people do smile a lot but sometimes they smile because they are embarrassed or they don’t understand you. Don’t take the smile the same way as you would at home.
Don’t Raise Your Voice
Simply, don’t raise your voice in anger. In doing so, it is seen as as an act of violence and could end up in a fist fight or worse.
The Underwear law
Technically it is illegal to leave your house in Thailand if you are not wearing underwear. Not sure how they would enforce this. Although I haven’t had any stories of people being arrested for this offence.
This is properly one of the more unusual fun facts about Thailand.
The National Flag of Thailand
Thai people love their country and their king. The national flag of Thailand is raised every morning at 8:00 and lowered every evening at 6:00. Twice a day the national anthem is played in the entire country.
Its two horizontal red stripes symbolize the land and its people. The white horizontal stripes represent the purity of Buddhism, the nation’s main religion.
With, the wide blue band across the center stands for the monarchy.
Buddhism is the Main Religion
With more than 90 percent of the population are Buddhist. You can tell when traveling through the country because there are wats (temples), Buddha statues, and mini offerings everywhere.
Vaping is illegal
Vaping (electronic cigarette) is illegal and can land you in jail for a few hrs/days plus a substantial fine.
While Mother’s Day is held dear in many cultures throughout the world. Mother’s Day in Thailand is doubly special. Mother days is on the 12th of August to commemorate the birthday of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, the Mother of all Thai people.
Songkran Celebrates the Country’s New Year
Songkran is the Thai festival that celebrates the country’s new year. Thai New Year is from 13th to 15th April each year.
In Bangkok they have probably the biggest and best water fight of your life on Khao San Road. And anyone can get involved.
Finally, Thailand is a great place to visit and has a lot to offer for everyone. Like any trip, you’ll get the most out of it by learning all you can before you arrive.
And that’s it for now! I’d love to know if this post on some of the fun facts about Thailand has helped you. Let me know if you have any questions and let me know if you go too.