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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 Emblem

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.

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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.

Seal Province Capital Population
Area (km2) Population Density
per sq km
Seal Bangkok.png Bangkok (Krung Thep Maha Nakhon)
Special Governed District
Bangkok (Krung Thep Maha Nakhon) 5,701,394 1,568.7 3,634.5
Seal Amnat Charoen Amnat Charoen Province Amnat Charoen 372,137 3,161.2 117.7
Seal Ang Thong Ang Thong Province Ang Thong 284,970 968.4 294.3
Seal Bueng Kan.png Bueng Kan Province Bueng Kan 385,053 4,305 89.4
Seal Buriram.png Buriram Province Buriram 1,553,765 10,322.9 150.5
Seal Chachoengsao.png Chachoengsao Province Chachoengsao 673,933 5,351.0 125.9
Seal Chainat.png Chainat Province Chainat 334,934 2,469.7 135.6
Seal Chaiyaphum.png Chaiyaphum Province Chaiyaphum 1,127,423 12,778.3 88.2
Seal Chanthaburi.png Chanthaburi Province Chanthaburi 514,616 6,338.0 81.2
Seal Chiang Mai.png Chiang Mai Province Chiang Mai 1,640,479 20,107.0 81.6
Seal Chiang Rai.png Chiang Rai Province Chiang Rai 1,198,218 11,678.4 102.6
Seal Chonburi.png Chonburi Province Chonburi 1,316,293 4,363.0 301.7
Seal Chumphon.png Chumphon Province Chumphon 489,964 6,009.0 81.5
Seal Kalasin.png Kalasin Province Kalasin 982,578 6,946.7 141.4
Seal Kamphaeng Phet.png Kamphaeng Phet Province Kamphaeng Phet 727,093 8,607.5 84.5
Seal Kanchanaburi.png Kanchanaburi Province Kanchanaburi 839,776 19,483.2 43.1
Seal Khon Kaen.png Khon Kaen Province Khon Kaen 1,767,601 10,886.0 162.4
Seal Krabi.png Krabi Province Krabi 432,704 4,708.5 91.9
Seal Lampang.png Lampang Province Lampang 761,949 12,534.0 60.8
Seal Lamphun.png Lamphun Province Lamphun 404,560 4,505.9 89.8
Seal Loei.png Loei Province Loei 624,066 11,424.6 54.6
Lopburi Province Lopburi 755,854 6,199.8 121.9
Seal Mae Hong Son.png Mae Hong Son Province Mae Hong Son 242,742 12,681.3 19.1
Seal Maha Sarakham.png Maha Sarakham Province Maha Sarakham 940,911 5,291.7 177.8
Seal Mukdahan.png Mukdahan Province Mukdahan 339,575 4,339.8 78.2
Seal Nakhon Nayok.png Nakhon Nayok Province Nakhon Nayok 252,734 2,122.0 119.1
Seal Nakhon Pathom.png Nakhon Pathom Province Nakhon Pathom 860,246 2,168.3 396.7
Seal Nakhon Phanom.png Nakhon Phanom Province Nakhon Phanom 703,392 5,512.7 127.6
Seal Nakhon Ratchasima.png Nakhon Ratchasima Province Nakhon Ratchasima 2,582,089 20,494.0 126.0
Seal Nakhon Sawan.png Nakhon Sawan Province Nakhon Sawan 1,073,495 9,597.7 111.8
Seal Nakhon Si Thammarat.png Nakhon Si Thammarat Province Nakhon Si Thammarat 1,522,561 9,942.5 153.1
Seal Nan.png Nan Province Nan 476,363 11,472.1 41.5
Seal Narathiwat.png Narathiwat Province Narathiwat 737,162 4,475.4 164.7
Seal Nong Bua Lamphu.png Nong Bua Lamphu Province Nong Bua Lamphu 502,868 3,859.0 130.3
Seal Nong Khai.png Nong Khai Province Nong Khai 912,937
3,027.0 124.5
Seal Nonthaburi.png Nonthaburi Province Nonthaburi 1,101,743 622.3 1,770.4
Seal Pathum Thani.png Pathum Thani Province Pathum Thani 985,643 1,525.9 645.9
Seal Pattani.png Pattani Province Pattani 655,259 1,940.4 337.7
Seal Phang Nga.png Phang Nga Province Phang Nga 253,112 4,170.0 60.7
Seal Phattalung.png Phatthalung Province Phatthalung 509,534 3,424.5 148.8
Seal Phayao.png Phayao Province Phayao 486,304 6,335.1 76.8
Seal Phetchabun.png Phetchabun Province Phetchabun 996,031 12,668.4 78.6
Seal Phetchaburi.png Phetchaburi Province Phetchaburi 464,033 6,225.1 74.5
Seal Phichit.png Phichit Province Phichit 552,690 4,531.0 122.0
Seal Phitsanulok.png Phitsanulok Province Phitsanulok 849,692 10,815.8 78.6
Seal Ayutthaya.png Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya Province Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya 782,096 2,556.6 305.9
Seal Phrae.png Phrae Province Phrae 460,756 6,538.6 70.5
Seal Phuket.png Phuket Province Phuket 345,067 543.0 635.5
Seal Prachinburi.png Prachinburi Province Prachinburi 466,572 4,762.4 98.0
Seal Prachuap Khiri Khan.png Prachuap Khiri Khan Province Prachuap Khiri Khan 509,134 6,367.6 80.0
Seal Ranong.png Ranong Province Ranong 183,079 3,298.0 55.5
Seal Ratchaburi.png Ratchaburi Province Ratchaburi 839,075 5,196.5 161.5
Seal Rayong.png Rayong Province Rayong 626,402 3,552.0 176.4
Seal Roi Et.png 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
Seal Sakon Nakhon.png Sakon Nakhon Province Sakon Nakhon 1,122,905 9,605.8 116.9
Seal Samut Prakan.png Samut Prakan Province Samut Prakan 1,185,180 1,004.1 1,180.3
Seal Samut Sakhon.png Samut Sakhon Province Samut Sakhon 491,887 872.3 563.9
Seal Samut Songkhram.png Samut Songkhram Province Samut Songkhram 194,057 416.7 465.7
Seal Saraburi.png Saraburi Province Saraburi 617,384 3,576.5 172.6
Seal Satun.png Satun Province Satun 297,163 2,479.0 119.9
Seal Singburi.png Sing Buri Province Sing Buri 214,661 822.5 261.0
Seal Sisaket.png Sisaket Province Sisaket 1,452,471 8,840.0 164.3
Seal Songkhla.png Songkhla Province Songkhla 1,357,023 7,393.9 183.5
Seal Sukhothai.png Sukhothai Province Sukhothai 601,778 6,596.1 91.2
Seal Suphanburi.png Suphan Buri Province Suphan Buri 845,950 5,358.0 157.9
Seal Surat Thani.png Surat Thani Province Surat Thani 1,000,383 12,891.5 77.6
Seal Surin.png Surin Province Surin 1,381,761 8,124.1 170.1
Seal Tak.png Tak Province Tak 525,684 16,406.6 32.0
Seal Trang.png Trang Province Trang 622,659 4,917.5 126.6
Seal Trat.png Trat Province Trat 220,921 2,819.0 78.4
Seal Ubon Ratchathani.png Ubon Ratchathani Province Ubon Ratchathani 1,813,088 15,744.8 115.2
Seal Udon Thani.png Udon Thani Province Udon Thani 1,544,786 11,730.3 131.7
Seal Uthai Thani.png Uthai Thani Province Uthai Thani 327,959 6,730.3 48.7
Seal Uttaradit.png Uttaradit Province Uttaradit 462,618 7,838.6 59.0
Seal Yala.png Yala Province Yala 487,380 4,521.1 107.8
Seal Yasothon.png Yasothon Province Yasothon 539,257 4,161.7 129.6