Oriental & Beyond. Private Tours~ Tailor made Holidays

North Thailand

Chiang Mai, Doi Suthep

Phitsanulok

Covering some 105,815 square kilometers, Phitsanulok is 377 kilometers north of Bangkok.
It borders Phitsanuloke Uttaradit Province on the North, Phichit Province on the South, Loei and Phetchabun Provinces on the East, and Kamphaeng Phet and Sukhothai Provinces on the West.
Situated on a strategic location dividing Thailands Central and Northern regions, and connecting to the Northeastern region, Phitsanulok is undeniably an important hub and an ideal base for travelers wishing to explore the lower North and western Northeast.
Phitsanulok, however, is not just a stopover for tourists, but is a province with promising tourism opportunities.

Phitsanulok City spans the banks of Maenam Nan and has Maenam Kwae Noi running through it.
Therefore, it is locally known and historically referred to as Song Kwae City (song means two and kwae means a river).
Most of Phitsanulok’s terrain is flatlands, with one third of the area being mountain ranges on the north and the east.
Its unique natural endowments including natural parks and waterfalls make a trip to Phitsanulok worthwhile.
Apart from its exceptional natural charisma, Phitsanulok provides visitors with an opportunity to explore notable chapters of Thailand’s history.
For example, remains of an ancient community dating back between 2,000-4,000 years, including old stone axes, was found here.
In addition, the old temple of Wat Chula Mani, situated 5 kilometers south of the city, was built even before the Sukhothai Kingdom burst into power.
Phitsanulok prospered along with the powerful Sukhothai (1238-1378) and Ayutthaya (1350 1767) Kingdoms.
In particular, it played a strategic role in the Ayutthaya era when it had become the Kingdoms royal capital for 25 years during the reign of King Borom Trailokanat.
Phitsanulok is also the birthplace of King Naresuan the Great (reigned 1590-1605) the legendary King who declared Ayutthayas independence from Burma in 1584. King Naresuan the Great is known for his victorious and honorable single hand combat on elephant back Yutthahatti against a Burmese Crown Prince.
His heroic power and strong dedication to expelling the invaders from his motherland saved the country, and truly united the Kingdom which later was known as Siam and currently known as Thailand.
Phitsanulok was also a strategic location for other Ayutthaya Kings as it was a major center for military recruitment and a training camp when Ayutthaya waged wars with Burma.

City Walls and Moats of Phitsanulok.
The city walls of Phitsanulok were made of clay similar to those of the Sukhothai era. The walls were built at the command of King Borom Trailokanat of Ayutthaya to prevent attacks from both the Lanna and Burmese Kingdoms. It was not until King Rama I of the Rattanakosin era that the walls were destroyed. The demolition was undertaken to prevent enemies using the city walls as shelter for their troops.
Today, the remaining walls can be seen in the area of Wat Noi and Phitsanulok Police Station. City Moats are 12 metres wide and are visible in the western area of the city parallel to Phra Ruang Road.

House Boat. The house boat serves as a signature of Phitsanulok. From north to south along both sides of Nan River, house boats and rafts are lined up, creating a unique perspective for tourists. In addition to the display of the typical Phitsanulok way of life emphasis is placed on the strong connection between man and the river. Hardly seen anywhere else in the Northern region, the house boat represents the serene ambience of a united community.

Nan Riverside Park and Boathouse Museum. The park, which was built by Phitsanulok Municipality in 2002, is situated in the middle of the town, on the eastern bank of Nan river. Inside the park, is a Boathouse Museum showcasing the daily life of people living in boathouses.

Phra Si Mahathat Temple (Wat Phra Si Mahathat). Locally dubbed as “Wat Yai”, the complex is considered the most important temple in Phitsanulok. Housing Thailand’s famous Phra Phutthachinnarat, Wat Yai is located at the foot of Naresuan Bridge on the city side of the river. The temple was built during the reign of Phra Maha Thamma Racha I (Phraya Lithai) in 1357. Phra Phutthachinnarat is considered the most beautiful Buddha image in Thailand. The large Sukhothai-style bronze statue was cast in 1357 by the order of King Maha Thamma Racha I of Sukhothai.
The statues unique feature is the flame-like halo a symbol of spiritual radiance. In 1931, King Ekatotsarot (King Naresuan’s younger brother) commanded a gold coating of the image, making it outstanding against the dark backdrop.

Today, thousands of visitors, both Thais and foreigners, flock to Wat Yai just to get a glimpse of Phra Phutthachinnarat. Most of contemporary Buddha images are cast using Phra Phutthachinnarat as a model. There is even a saying that, your trip to Phitsanulok is not complete without visiting Wat Yai to pay respect to Phra Phutthachinnarat. Only the Emerald Buddha situated in the Grand Palace, Bangkok, is more highly respected by Thais.
A celebration to honour the statue is held annually in late January. Other outstanding features of the temple (vihan in Thai) include the large pearl-inlaid wooden doors, the gateway to see Phra Phutthachinnarat. The doors were completed in 1756 by Ayutthaya’s royal craftsmen.
Inside the vihan are the Italian marble floor, two painted pulpits (thammas) placed to one side, and murals illustrating the life of the Lord Buddha.

Apart from Phra Buddha Chinnarat, there are other Buddha images worth seeing.
Phra Attharot, a standing Buddha statue cast in same period as Phra Phutthachinnarat, is situated in front of the large Phra Prang (pagoda) behind the Viharn.
A 36-metre high Phra Prang was built in the early Ayutthaya style.
There are staircases leading up to the place where relic of the Lord Buddha is enshrined.
There is also a small museum, which exhibits a good collection of Sukhothai and Ayutthaya-era Buddha images and related religious items that is worth visiting. Visitors are advised to dress conservatively.

Sukhothai

Found in the 13th century, Sukhothai (literally means Dawn of Happiness) was the first truly independent Thai Kingdom, which enjoyed a golden age under King Ramkhamhaeng, credited with creating the Thai alphabet.
The superb temples and monuments of this great city have been lovingly restored in Sukhothai Historical Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a must-see for all travellers.
Sukhothai is located on the lower edge of the northern region, 427 kilometres north of Bangkok or some 298 kilometres south of Chiang Mai. The province covers some 6,596 square kilometres and is divided into 9 Amphoes: Muang Sukhothai, Ban Dan Lan Hoi, Khiri Mat, Kong Krailat, Sawankhalok, Si Nakhon, Si Samrong, Si Satchanalai and Thung Saliam.
Historical background: Sukhothai was the first kingdom of the Thais in this peninsula. Two princes-Pho Khun Pha Muang and Pho Khun Bang Klang Hao combined their forces and fought the Khmers who commanded an extensive empire throughout this part of the world.
They drove the Khmers out of Sukhothai, a major frontier post of the Khmer Empire, and established it as their capital in 1238. Pho Khun Bang Klang Hao, urged by the people to be king, was enthroned with the royal title of Pho Khun Si Indrathit. King Si Indrathit had two sons-Pho Khun Ban Mueang and Pho Khun Ramkhamhaeng. After his death, Pho Khun Ban Mueang succeeded him. His brother, Pho Khun Ramkhamhaeng, ascended the throne in 1278 and reigned for forty years. He was Thailand’s first great king.
One of Thailand’s finest warriors, King Ramkhamhaeng made Sukhothai a powerful and extensive kingdom which included many parts of what are today neighbouring countries. A number of ancient cities paid him tribute.
King Ramkhamhaeng opened direct political relations with China and made two trips to China – the first in 1282 to visit Emperor Kublai Khan and the second in 1300 after Kublai Khans death. From the second visit, he brought back Chinese artisans who taught the Thais the art of pottery.
Today, the old Sangkhalok Potteries are eagerly sought by collectors.
A major achievement of King Ramkhamhaeng was the revision of various forms of Khmer alphabets into a system suitable for the writing of Thai words. The alphabet that he invented in 1283 was essentially the same as that in use today.During his reign, there was prosperity and happiness.
There was water in the paddy-fields and fish in the water.
A stone inscription reads in part: This Muang Sukhothai is good. In the water there are fish; in the field there is rice. The ruler does not levy a tax on the people who travel along the road together, leading their oxen on the way to trade and riding their horses on the way to sell. Whoever wants to trade in elephants, so trades. Whoever wants to trade in horses, so trades. Whoever wants to trade in silver and gold, so trades.
King Ramkhamhaeng also promoted religion and culture, and through his efforts, Buddhism progressed among the people. Inspirational faith gave birth to classic forms of Thai religious arts. Images of the Lord Buddha sculptured during the Sukhothai Era are cultural treasures which impart a feeling of peace and serenity.
A total of eight kings ruled Sukhothai.
The gradual decline of Sukhothai occurred during the reigns of the last two kings.
The end of this first Thai kingdom occurred in 1365 when it became a vassal state of Ayutthaya, a young and rising power to the south. Ayutthaya became the capital of Thailand before Thon Buri and Bangkok.
Sukhotai historical park: This is located 12 kilometres from town on the Sukhothai-Tak Highway.
Ruins of the royal palaces, Buddhist temples, the city gates, walls, moats, dams, ditches, ponds, canals, and the water dyke control system, which was the magical and spiritual centre of the kingdom, are now preserved and have been restored by the Fine Arts Department with the cooperation of UNESCO, not only with a view of fostering Thailand’s national identity but of safeguarding a fine example of mankind cultural heritage.

Lampang

Famous for its horse-drawn carriages and with a rooster as its provincial emblem, Lampang boasts a long history of human settlements on the Wang River basin, some of which dating back to more than 1,000 years. It is rich in archaeological evidence reflecting ancient civilisations of Hariphunchai, Lanna and Burma.

Thai Elephants Conservation Centre: is located in the Thung Kwian forest park in Hang Chat district, about 32 kilometres from town on the route to Chiang Mai. It is the only facility in the world devoted to the raining of elephants for timber work using these pachyderms as labor.
There are performances and training demonstrations. The art of making wooden elephants is also demonstrated.
There are 2-3 shows daily. Visitors can enjoy feeding these intelligent giants or ride them to see the natural surroundings.
The centre provides health care for the elephants. For more information, call 0 5422 7051.

Lampang is the only province in Thailand still retaining horse-drawn carriages as a means of transport within city limit.
Visitors can hire such vehicles to tour places such as markets, traditional houses along the river bank and the numerous temples in town.

Wat Phra That Lampang Luang.
Some 20 kilometres to the southwest of town in Ko Kha district is Wat Phra That Lampang Luang, a paradigm of temple building of Lanna.
The temple itself is prominently sited on a hillock surrounded by wall. The entrance arches, called Pratu Khong, is adorned with fine plaster designs.
The wall-less main Vihan houses a bronze Buddha statue called the Phra Chao Lan Thong.
To the back is a golden Chedi in Lanna architectural style containing a Holy Relic.
Also in the back is another Vihan with beautiful murals on wooden walls, said to be the oldest in the North. The temple also has a large collection of ancient wooden utensils.

Chiang Mai

Experiencing the merging of the past into the present in Chiang Mai where locals are proud of the city’s 700-year history.
Its rich traditional heritage and unique culture is a perfect foundation for the development of the city. Chiang Mai is one of the few places in Thailand where it is possible to find in the heart of the city centuries-old chedis and temples next to modern convenience stores and boutique hotels.
The original city layout still exists as a neat square surrounded by a moat with vestiges of the fortified wall and its four main gates offering prime access to the old town.
For years, tourists have mistaken Chiang Mai as the northern junction and the base from which they can explore other provinces.
The phrase “a day in Chiang Mai is enough to see things around” was common. Today, tourists are surprised by the fact that there is always something new to discover Chiang Mai.
Intriguing diversity among ethnic tribes coupled with breathtaking scenery makes Chiang Mai one of Asia’s most attractive tourist destinations.
Two weeks in Chiang Mai may not be long enough for serious travelers.

The old city of Chiang Mai with its fascinating indigenous cultural identity such as diverse dialects, cuisine, architecture, traditional values, festivals, handicrafts and classical dances is a prime location in its own right. In addition, the presence of hill tribes and their wealth of unique cultures enhance Chiang Mai’s distinctive diversity.

Chiang Mai is also blessed with pristine natural resources of mountains (dois), waterfalls, and other nature-based tourist attractions.
At the same time, Chiang Mai residents are warm, gracious and congenial providing authentic hospitality making visits memorable and meaningful. Moreover, visitors from all walks of life can collect handicrafts of silk, silver and wood produced locally as timeless souvenirs.
Chiang Mai is a place where both backpackers and luxury tourists can enjoy themselves to the fullest.

The Past: Chiang Mai literally means new city and has retained the name despite having celebrated its 700th anniversary in 1996.
King Meng Rai founded the city as the capital of the Lanna (A Million Rice Fields) Kingdom on Thursday, 12th April 1296 during the same period of time as the establishment of the Sukhothai Kingdom. King Meng Rai the Great conferred with his friends, King Ramkhamhaeng of Sukhothai and King Ngam Muang of Phayao before choosing the site where the capital of the Lanna Kingdom was to be founded.
From then, Chiang Mai not only became the capital and cultural core of the Lanna Kingdom, it was also the centre of Buddhism in northern Thailand.
King Meng Rai himself was very religious and founded many of the city’s temples, which are still important today.
At the height of its power, the Lanna Kingdom extended its territory far into Burma and Laos, and southwards to Kamphaeng Phet a province above Sukhothai.

The Burmese conquered the Lanna Kingdom in 1556 ending the dynasty founded by King Meng Rai that lasted over 250 years. As Burma had occupied Chiang Mai for nearly 200 years, Burmese architectural influences are visible in many temples. At the end of the 18th century, King Taksin the Great regrouped the Thais in the south and finally drove the Burmese out with the help of King Kawila of Lampang thereby regaining Thai independence from Burma. Chiang Mai was then governed by a succession of princes who ruled the north as a Siamese protectorate under the Chakri dynasty.
In the late 19th century, King Rama V appointed a high commissioner in Chiang Mai and it was only in 1939 that Chiang Mai finally came under the direct control of the central government in Bangkok the same time the country was renamed Thailand.

In the past, Chiang Mai was only accessible by river and elephants. More convenient access was achieved only when the railway line was completed in the late 1920’s. Moreover, the first motor vehicle driven directly from Bangkok arrived in Chiang Mai in 1932. Such isolation was more favorable to Chiang Mai as it helped to nurture and preserve the unique Lanna culture.

When we look at Chiang Mai today, it is the economic, cultural and communications hub of northern Thailand complete with excellent infrastructure, good roads, by passes and road tunnels, and reliable communications infrastructure.

The Setting: Chiang Mai, with an altitude of approximately 310 meters above sea level, is situated approximately 700 kilometers from Bangkok on the Mae Ping River basin. Surrounded by high mountain ranges, the city covers an area of approximately 20,107 square kilometers and is the country’s second largest province. Chiang Mai borders Myanmar on the north, Lamphun and Tak Provinces on the south, Chiang Rai, Lampang and Lamphun Provinces on the east and Mae Hong Son Province on the west. The terrain is mainly comprised of jungles and mountains, which are home to the hill tribes.
In addition, wildlife and exotic flora may be found in the national parks.

Most of Chiang Mai’s mountains are oriented from north to south. Together they create a multitude of streams and tributaries including Mae Chaem, Mae Ngat and Mae Klang. One of Chiang Mai’s distinctive features is Doi Inthanon, Thailands highest peak, which is 2,575 meters above sea level.
In addition, the province boasts flat, fertile valleys, which spread along the banks of the largest and most important river in Chiang Mai Mae Nam Ping (Ping River) which originates from the Chiang Dao mountain range.

Wat Phra Sing
Built in 1345, the temple is located on Sam Lan Road. It houses the North’s most revered Buddha statue, Phra Phuttha Sihing which is enshrined in Vihan Lai Kham, a chapel that features exquisite woodcarvings and northern style murals. Every year on April 13, Songkran Day, the image is paraded through the streets of Chiang Mai for local people to sprinkle scented water on. This area was formerly Wat Li Chiang Market until 1345, when King Pa Yu, the fifth king of the Meng Rai Dynasty commanded the construction of this temple and a 24-feet chedi to contain his father’s ashes.

Wat Phratat Doi Suthep
Locals would say, You havent really gone to Chiang Mai unless youve been to Wat Phratat Doi Suthep. Truly, the place is the most important and famous Chiang Mai landmark. Built in 1383, this mountaintop temple has a chedi (pagoda) that houses holy Buddha relics. The gold-plated chedi lies in the middle of a square marble-tiled courtyard. The four corners of the chedi are adorned with parasols which represent royal regalia. The temples courtyard is lined by a cloister, which contains images and murals depicting Buddhas life. There are also two viharns situated in the middle of the east and west sides of the cloister.
This temple is 15 kilometers from town and is 3,520 feet above sea level. It is the perfect place to get a birds eye view of the city. The temple can be reached via a steep Naga staircase comprised of 290 steps or railcars. The temple is open daily from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Night Bazar
The Night Bazaar is a shopping haven where one can find handmade products and souvenirs from many Chiang Mai villages and hill tribes. Local cloths and fabrics are reasonably priced for purchasing.

The shopping street opens around 6:00 p.m.

Doi Inthanon National Park. This national park which covers an area of 1,005 square kilometers is located on Doi Inthanon, Thailand’s highest mountain which is 2,565 meters above sea level. Located between Mae Chaem and Chom Thong, the park is comprised of the largest tract of upper mountain forest which ranges across Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar, and ends in Northern Thailand. The mountain ranges gave birth to the main tributaries of the Ping river and formed the beautiful waterfalls, namely Siriphum, Wachirathan, Mae Pan, Mae Klang and Mae Ya. The moist and dense evergreen forest is abundant with lichens and wild orchids. The park is also a paradise for bird lovers. Visiting Doi Inthanon is possible throughout the year however, the best period for viewing the waterfalls is May through November while the best period for viewing wild flowers is December through February and for ornithologists is November through March.

Doi Inthanon Royal Project Research Station.This is located at Ban Luang, Chom Thong District, on the way to the Doi Inthanon peak. The research station is operated under the Royal Project. The facilities are for research and development of pilot projects for cash crops, which include coffee, cold-climate fruits, and cut flowers. The research station also provides services and information regarding the application of advanced technology to help alleviate poverty, natural resource conservation etc. In addition, information on production and marketing of the products is also available. Tourists can visit the stations charming garden of temperate-climate flowers and a cut-flower nursery. The research station is located approximately 90 kilometers from the city and near Inthanon peak. The research station is ideal for flower lovers and is a recommended stopover for travelers heading up or down Doi Inthanon.

Mae Hong Son

Mae Hong Son is nestled in a deep valley hemmed in by high mountain ranges and has long been isolated from the outside world.
Virtually covered with mist throughout the year, the name refers to the fact that is terrain is highly suitable for the training of elephants.

Former governors of Chiang Mai used to organize the rounding up of wild elephants which were then trained before being sent to the capital for work. Today, Mae Hong Son is one of the dream destinations for visitors.
Daily flights into its small airport bring growing numbers of tourists, attracted by the spectacular scenery, numerous hill tribe communities and soft adventure opportunities.
Thai Yai Culture: the Thai Yai can be seen along the northern border with Myanmar.
They may at one time have been the most numerous of the ethnic Thai tribes that stretch across Southeast Asia.
A large group settled in Mae Hong Son. The Thai Yai culture has had a strong influence on the province, as can be seen in its architecture.
Although a part of the Lanna region, the indigenous Thai Yai people living in Mae Hong Son are faced with very cold weather during winter and extremely hot weather in the summer, with mist or fog practically throughout the whole year.
Not surprisingly they have had to adapt to the environment.
As a result, their architectural style has developed into something different from other Lanna communities.
Their living quarters are usually built with tall floors and low roofs, the sizes differing according to ones social status and position.
Homes of the ordinary folks are usually with one single level of roof, while those of the local aristocrats have two or more levels forming a castle-like shape. The space thus provided is believed to help air circulation.
An interesting feature of the Thai Yai style is the perforated designs along the eaves which are an architectural identity of the area.

Chiang Rai

Chiang Rai, the northernmost province of Thailand is about 785 kilometers north of Bangkok.
Situated on the Kok River basin, Chiang Rai covers an area of approximately 11,678 square meters with an average elevation of 580 meters above sea level. The province, which is located within the renowned Golden Triangle area where Myanmar, Laos and Thailand converge, is also known as the gateway to Myanmar, Laos and Southern China.

Chiang Rai, which was founded in 1262 by King Meng Rai, was the first capital of the Lanna Thai Kingdom (Kingdom of a million rice fields), which was later conquered by Burma. It was not until 1786 that Chiang Rai became a Thai territory and was proclaimed a province during the reign of King Rama VI in 1910.

Today, Chiang Rai is a travelers paradise endowed with abundant natural tourist attractions and antiquities; the province itself is evidence of past civilization. Attractions range from magnificent mountain scenery, ruins of ancient settlements, historic sites, Buddhist shrines and ethnic villages as the province is also home to several hill tribes who maintain fascinating lifestyles. For those interested in the natural side of Chiang Rai, jungle trekking is recommended along various trails.
Chiang Rai which tends to be a little more ‘laid back’ now competes with Chiang Mai as a tourist attraction and is fast becoming a popular escape for tourists wanting to get away from the troubles they left behind.

The Golden Triangle

A trip to Chiang Rai province would not be complete without seeing the notorious Golden Triangle first hand!
This famed border location where Thailand, Laos and Myanmar meet on the Mekong River was once supposed to be the center of all the poppy cultivation in Thailand.
Travel approximately 9 kilometers north of old town Chiang Saen, along the road parallel to the Mekong River to the area where the borders of Thailand, Myammar and Laos converge. This area where the Mekong River meets the Ruak River is locally referred to as “Sop Ruak”.
Within this area are remains of many ancient places and structures attesting to the fact that the area had been settled by people in the past.
It is also the area where various legends concerning the Lanna ancestors originate.
Boats can be hired in order to view the upstream scenery of the Golden Triangle and to travel downstream to Chiang Khong.
The trip to the Golden Triangle and Chiang Khong would take approximately 40 minutes and 1 hour respectively, depending on river currents and water levels.

Wat Phra Keo
Wat Phra Kaeo, which is located on Trairat Road on the northwest side of town, is the best known of the northern temples. It once housed the Emerald Buddha, Thailands most important Buddha statue which was discovered in 1444.
The statue had been moved by various state rulers to be placed in their capitals including Lampang, Chiang Rai and Vientiane before finally being enshrined in Bangkok’s royal Wat Phra Kaeo.
There is now a green jade replica of the image on display. The temple also houses a 700-year bronze statue of Phra Chao Lan Thong, which is housed in the Chiang Saen style ubosot.

Hilltribe Museum
The Population and Community Development Association (PDA) is a non-government organization responsible for some of the most effective tribal development projects in the region. The popular “Cabbages & Condoms” restaurants, with branches here and in Bangkok (and now a resort in Pattaya), carry their important message of safe sex and family planning. On the top floor of this office is a small Hilltribe Museum that’s heavy on “shop” and light on “museum,” but the admission goes to a good cause.
Open daily 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; admission fee is 50B ($1.20)/person. Address: 620/25 Thanalai Rd., east of Wisetwang Road (tel. 0 5371-9167)

Kok River
The Kok River is one of the most scenic attractions in Chiang Rai. It runs from Thathon in northern Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai City and then flows on to meet the Maekhong River at Chiang Khong.
From Baan Thathon boats, rafts and treks leave daily venturing into the surrounding mountains where the jungle dips into the river’s cool waters.
A long-tailed boat can be hired to ferry visitors up and down the river.
Stops can be made at Akha or Iko, Lisu and Karen hill tribe villages.
Alternatively stops can be made at the Buddha cave, a temple within a cavern; an elephant camp, for trekking; a hot spring; and a riverside Lahu village. Trips range from 300 bahts to 700 bahts ($7-$16), depending on the number of stops made.
The ferry pier is beyond the bridge across from the Dusit Island Resort.

Chiang Saen.
An ancient town located on the bank of the Mekong River, Chiang Saen was originally called Wiang Hiran Nakhon Ngoen Yang. It served as the capital of the Lanna Thai Kingdom until King Mengrai established Chiang Rai as the capital in 1262. Ruins of the old double city walls and many other antiquities remain both inside and outside the district town. |Most notable is the distinctive style of Buddhist sculpture which evolved in Chiang Saen during the late thirteenth century providing proof of the city’s historical importance.
Rich cultural heritage, coupled with natural tourist attractions, has made Chiang Saen a unique tourist destination.

Hall of Opium, Golden Triangle Park:
The Hall of Opium at the Golden Triangle Park houses several sections to be explored and various exhibitions to be contemplated.
For example, the 5,600 square-meter Hall of Opium presents An Invitation to the Mysterious World of Opium from Darkness to Light, the history of opium as of 5,000 years ago from its natural properties to its uses. It traces opium’s global journey through trade routes in the age of imperialism, culminating in the Opium Wars-an event that disgraced both winners and losers that led to the fall of the Manchu Dynasty.
It also features Siamese wisdom in confronting the West and the eventual control of opium problems.
Other exhibits are presented in a manner that encourages visitors learn how drugs become a part of everyday life and understand the impact of opium on society in terms of crime, conflict and illegal drugs.
Additionally, the Hall of Opium presents efforts to curb drugs through actual case studies that offer alternatives and opportunities in fighting against the temptation of drugs.
The Hall of Opium also displays paraphernalia associated with opium smoking and trading, along with many photographs, films, and videos about opium and other illegal drugs from countries around the world.