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Thailand
 

World > Asia > Thailand


 


Thailand is a Southeast Asian, predominantly Buddhist kingdom almost equidistant between India and China. For centuries known by outsiders as Siam, Thailand has been something of a Southeast Asian migratory, cultural and religious crossroads.

With an area of some 510,000 square kilometres and a population of some 60 million, Thailand is approximately the same size as France.
Geographically speaking, Thailand is divided into six major regions: the mountainous north where elephants work forests and winter temperatures are sufficiently cool to permit cultivation of temperate fruits such as strawberries and peaches; the sprawling northeast plateau, largely bordered by the Mekong River, where the world's oldest Bronze Age civilisation flourished some 5,000 years ago,- the central plain, one of the world's most fertile rice and fruit-growing areas; the eastern coastal plain, where fine sandy beaches support the growth of summer resorts', western mountains and valleys, suitable for the development of hydro-electric power; and the peninsular south where arresting scenic beauty complements economically vital tin mining, rubber cultivation and fishing.

 

 

 

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