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Location in Asia
Location: Southeast Asia
Location in the World
Thailand, officially the Kingdom of Thailand, formerly known as Siam, is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the west by the Andaman Sea and the southern extremity of Burma. Its maritime boundaries include Vietnam in the Gulf of Thailand to the southeast, and Indonesia and India in the Andaman Sea to the southwest.
Thailand National Flag
The country is a constitutional monarchy, headed by King Rama IX, the ninth king of the House of Chakri, who, having reigned since 1946, is the world's longest-serving head of state and the longest-reigning monarch in Thai history. The king of Thailand is titled Head of State, Head of the Armed Forces, the Upholder of the Buddhist religion, and the Defender of all Faiths.
Thailand is the world's 51st-largest country in terms of total area, with an area of approximately 513,000 km2 (198,000 sq mi), and is the 20th-most-populous country, with around 64 million people. The capital and largest city is Bangkok, which is Thailand's political, commercial, industrial and cultural hub. About 75% of the population is ethnically Thai, 14% is of Chinese origin, and 3% is ethnically Malay; the rest belong to minority groups including Mons, Khmers and various hill tribes. The country's official language is Thai. The primary religion is Buddhism, which is practiced by around 95% of the population.
Thailand experienced rapid economic growth between 1985 and 1995, and is presently a newly industrialized country and a major exporter. Tourism also contributes significantly to the Thai economy, as the country is home to a number of well-known tourist destinations, including Ayutthaya, Pattaya, Bangkok, Phuket, Krabi, Chiang Mai, Hua Hin and Ko Samui.There are approximately 5.2 million legal and illegal migrants in Thailand, and the country has also attracted a number of expatriates from developed countries.
Thailand Administrative Divisions
Thailand is divided into 76 provinces, which are gathered into 5 groups of provinces by location. There are also 2 special governed districts: the capital Bangkok (Krung Thep Maha Nakhon) and Pattaya, of which Bangkok is at provincial level and thus often counted as a province.
Each province is divided into districts and the districts are further divided into sub-districts (tambons). As of 2006 there are 877 districts and the 50 districts of Bangkok. Some parts of the provinces bordering Bangkok are also referred to as Greater Bangkok. These provinces include Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Samut Prakan, Nakhon Pathom and Samut Sakhon. The name of each province's capital city is the same as that of the province. For example, the capital of Chiang Mai province (Changwat Chiang Mai) is Mueang Chiang Mai or Chiang Mai.
The Thailand Southern Region
Thailand controlled the Malay Peninsula as far as Malacca in the 1400s and held much of the peninsula, including Temasek (Singapore) some of the Andaman Islands and a colony on Java, but eventually failed when the British used force to guarantee their suzerainty over the sultanate.
Mostly the northern states of the Malay Sultanate presented annual gifts to the Thai king in the form of a golden flower, which understood the gesture to be tribute and an acknowledgement of vassalage. The British intervened in the Malay State and with the Anglo-Siamese Treaty tried to build a railway from the south to Bangkok. Thailand relinquished sovereignty over what are now the northern Malay provinces of Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan and Terengganu to the British. Satun and Pattani provinces were given to Thailand.
The Malay peninsula provinces were infiltrated by the Japanese during World War II, and by the Malayan Communist Party (CPM) from 1942 to 2008, when they decided to sue for peace with the Malaysian and Thai governments after the CPM lost its support from Vietnam and China subsequent to the Cultural Revolution. Recent insurgent uprisings may be a continuation of separatist fighting which started after World War II with Sukarno's support for the PULO, and the intensification. Most victims since the uprisings have been Buddhist and Muslim bystanders.
Provinces of Thailand
Thailand is divided into 76 provinces, which are geographically grouped into 6 regions. The capital Bangkok is not a province but a special administrative area and is included as the 77th province since it is administered at the same level as the other 76 provinces. The name of the provinces are the same as that of their respective capital cities.
Bangkok has both the highest population and the highest population density. The biggest province by area is Nakhon Ratchasima, the smallest Samut Songkhram. Ranong has the lowest population number, while Mae Hong Son has the lowest population density (facts according to the year 2000 census).
Each province is administered by a governor, who is appointed by the Ministry of Internal Affairs. The only exception is Bangkok, whose governor is elected by its population.
Thailand is subdivided into 878 districts. The fifty districts of Bangkok are called khet, but even in official documents they are sometimes misidentified as amphoe. The number of districts in each provinces varies, from three in the smallest provinces to fifty in Bangkok. Further subdivision levels are tambon (subdistricts) and finally, Muban (villages). In Bangkok the tambon are called khwaeng.
List of Thailand Provinces
This is a sortable list of the provinces of Thailand, giving area, population and population density in 2010. The data is from the registration data, compiled by the National Statistical Office, Thailand.
|Area (km2)||Population Density
per sq km
|Bangkok (Krung Thep Maha Nakhon)
Special Governed District
|Bangkok (Krung Thep Maha Nakhon)||5,701,394||1,568.7||3,634.5|
|Amnat Charoen Province||Amnat Charoen||372,137||3,161.2||117.7|
|Ang Thong Province||Ang Thong||284,970||968.4||294.3|
|Bueng Kan Province||Bueng Kan||385,053||4,305||89.4|
|Chiang Mai Province||Chiang Mai||1,640,479||20,107.0||81.6|
|Chiang Rai Province||Chiang Rai||1,198,218||11,678.4||102.6|
|Kamphaeng Phet Province||Kamphaeng Phet||727,093||8,607.5||84.5|
|Khon Kaen Province||Khon Kaen||1,767,601||10,886.0||162.4|
|Mae Hong Son Province||Mae Hong Son||242,742||12,681.3||19.1|
|Maha Sarakham Province||Maha Sarakham||940,911||5,291.7||177.8|
|Nakhon Nayok Province||Nakhon Nayok||252,734||2,122.0||119.1|
|Nakhon Pathom Province||Nakhon Pathom||860,246||2,168.3||396.7|
|Nakhon Phanom Province||Nakhon Phanom||703,392||5,512.7||127.6|
|Nakhon Ratchasima Province||Nakhon Ratchasima||2,582,089||20,494.0||126.0|
|Nakhon Sawan Province||Nakhon Sawan||1,073,495||9,597.7||111.8|
|Nakhon Si Thammarat Province||Nakhon Si Thammarat||1,522,561||9,942.5||153.1|
|Nong Bua Lamphu Province||Nong Bua Lamphu||502,868||3,859.0||130.3|
|Nong Khai Province||Nong Khai||912,937
|Pathum Thani Province||Pathum Thani||985,643||1,525.9||645.9|
|Phang Nga Province||Phang Nga||253,112||4,170.0||60.7|
|Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya Province||Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya||782,096||2,556.6||305.9|
|Prachuap Khiri Khan Province||Prachuap Khiri Khan||509,134||6,367.6||80.0|
|Roi Et Province||Roi Et||1,309,708||8,299.4||157.8|
|Sa Kaeo Province||Sa Kaeo||485,632||7,195.1||75.6|
|Sakon Nakhon Province||Sakon Nakhon||1,122,905||9,605.8||116.9|
|Samut Prakan Province||Samut Prakan||1,185,180||1,004.1||1,180.3|
|Samut Sakhon Province||Samut Sakhon||491,887||872.3||563.9|
|Samut Songkhram Province||Samut Songkhram||194,057||416.7||465.7|
|Sing Buri Province||Sing Buri||214,661||822.5||261.0|
|Suphan Buri Province||Suphan Buri||845,950||5,358.0||157.9|
|Surat Thani Province||Surat Thani||1,000,383||12,891.5||77.6|
|Ubon Ratchathani Province||Ubon Ratchathani||1,813,088||15,744.8||115.2|
|Udon Thani Province||Udon Thani||1,544,786||11,730.3||131.7|
|Uthai Thani Province||Uthai Thani||327,959||6,730.3||48.7|