Insight Thainess Episode 7: The Part of Phuket

TAT Newsroom Short Documentary
Insight Thainess Episode 7: The Part of Phuket
Theme: The Journey of Phuket
Duration 3 minutes
Location: Phuket Old Town


Phuket’s glorious history is hidden behind its arts and culture, and also the kindhearted warmth of the local people that are waiting to welcome visitors from all over the world. Traces of the old civilisation in the Malay Peninsular have been still apparent until now through the architectural designs in Phuket Old Town, presenting the combination of Portuguese, Chinese, and Malay arts. From local houses of Chinese tin miners in early times to the golden age of international trade and commerce when Western art and culture were brought in by the European people, Western architectural styles from Neo-classical art, Renaissance art to Modern art, were combined with the local culture and lifestyle, and made Phuket the first “Pearl of the Andaman Sea”.

Through 150 years of pride, Phuket still maintains the beauty of cultural heritage and the soul of the ancestors in its way of living; not only in its architecture, but also its food. The art of Phuket cuisine is the combination of Thai, Chinese, Malay, and also sea folk cooking, which can best portray the root of Phuket’s culture. It’s not a surprise that Phuket is acknowledged by UNESCO as a member of the Creative Cities Network and the first City of Gastronomy in South East Asia.

The exquisite cuisine, warm hospitality, and simplicity of life, these charms of Phuket culture are still spreading to enchant and welcome all guests heartily, as always.

Insight Thainess Episode 7: The Part of Phuket short documentary is part of TAT Newsroom’s seven-part travel documentary series, titled ‘Insight Thainess’, to promote Thai values through the country’s unique way of life. To view the previous episodes, please log on to: TAT Newsroom’s Thai Travel VDOs.

Thailand wins big in hosting first MotoGP

Bangkok, 8 October, 2018 – Thailand enjoyed one of the biggest thrills in motor sports as over 100,000 screaming fans went on a thrilling ride with Marc Marquez of Honda as he narrowly beat arch-rival Andrea Dovizioso of Ducati in the last corner to win the race.

Thailand wins big in hosting first MotoGP Thailand wins big in hosting first MotoGP

The finish vindicated Minister of Tourism and Sports, Mr. Weerasak Kowsurat, who courageously had the foresight and tough-minded perseverance to dream big and help Thailand take its rightful place as one of Asia’s leading sports tourism destinations. He was particularly excited about the response from international visitors that travel worldwide specifically for MotoGP events.

“On my way back from Buri Ram, I had the pleasure of being seated next to a British couple who visited Thailand for the first time just for the MotoGP. They specifically travel the world to attend at least six MotoGP races per year.

“They were impressed by the event and said they love Thai green chicken curry. They already booked six room nights for next year’s event before leaving. Plus, they promised to return next year bringing even more family members and friends with them.”

Over 41,000 and 81,000 fans, respectively attended the Friday and Saturday qualifying sessions before the action packed final on Sunday with over 100,000 fans.

Thailand wins big in hosting first MotoGP

Minister of Tourism and Sports, Mr. Weerasak Kowsurat (left), and Dorna Sports CEO, Mr. Carmelo Ezpeleta, at Thailand’s first MotoGP

Mr. Weerasak estimated that the event generated three billion Baht (US$ 91.1 million) for Buri Ram and the neighbouring provinces noting that almost all of the riders also visited other Thai provinces, generating much needed revenue for the local economies.

“The teams and riders told organisers that they love the Thai people, love Thai food, and love the iconic Thai farm truck Rot I-tan. They also love the Pa Khao Ma handcrafted fabric and the ‘Sabai Sabai Isan” lifestyle,” Mr Weerasak added.

Carmelo Ezpeleta, CEO of Dorna Sports (holder of the rights of the FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix or MotoGP), was quoted as saying to Deputy Prime Minister General Prawit Wongsuwan (Chairman of the PTT Thailand Grand Prix 2018 MotoGP Committee) that Thailand’s first MotoGP should be considered a case study. He hailed it the best managed, most successful and smoothest running of any launch MotoGP race in the last 27 years that Dorna Sports has organised the event.

Mr Ezpeleta went on to congratulate Thailand and extended his gratitude to the entire Thai government and its people, for their support and warm reception at all activities and functions, according to Mr. Weerasak.

Thailand wins big in hosting first MotoGP

Mr. Weerasak Kowsurat is wearing the much-loved Pa Khao Ma handcrafted fabric at Thailand’s first MotoGP

Photo Credit: (First 2 Photos) PTT Thailand Grand Prix 2018’ MotoGP

Thailand’s Marine Department announces progress made in improving Phuket tour boat safety

Bangkok, 8 October, 2018 – Thailand’s Marine Department has announced progress made in improving Phuket’s tour boat safety with the aim to enhance the standard of marine tourism in the country and to assure confidence among tourists that the necessary measures are moving forward.

The Marine Department has assigned 26 more officers at every port and pier in Phuket to perform checks on boats and passengers heading out on sea excursions. It is also in the process of deploying more officers at other Thai resort destinations.

In addition, a new regulation has been announced to be enforced in time for this coming high season – all tour boats will be checked twice a month, up from once a month, to ensure the equipment on board and the crew meet safety regulations.

The regular check involves the equipment placed inside the boats and the equipment on board that must be ready to be deployed in case of emergency. The captain and helmsman must register each boat’s name and specification, plus the exact number of passengers and tour route must be submitted to the responsible officials before leaving port each time.

Each and every individual passenger must be checked to ensure there is a viable record to identify them by face including information; such as, both their given name and surname, nationality, where they stay and their next point of embarkation. Tour guides must also be checked in accordance with the law.

In addition, no tour boat of any type shall be allowed to sail in heavy weather.
Thai boat operators will be swiftly punished with the maximum penalty that the law affords if found in violation of the rules and regulations related to marine tourism. This is effective immediately.

The Marine Department’s latest action is part of the overall plans by the Thai government to step up marine safety and to help boost the confidence among local and international tourists.

Thailand Marine Department Phuket Boat Safety

Boat Lagoon Pier, Phuket

Thailand Marine Department Phuket Boat Safety
Chalong Pier, Phuket

Thailand Marine Department Phuket Boat Safety
Chalong Pier, Phuket

Thailand Marine Department Phuket Boat Safety
Royal Phuket Marina, Phuket

WWF-Thailand launches “Travel Ivory Free” campaign

Bangkok, 5 October, 2018 – WWF-Thailand, in a collaborative effort with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP), NokScoot Airline, and Bangkok Art & Culture Center (BACC), launches “Travel Ivory Free” campaign with an exhibition of a life-size resin sculpture of a mother and baby African elephant to highlight ivory trade and save elephants.

WWF-Thailand launches “Travel Ivory Free” campaign

The sculpture, measuring 1.8 metres high and seven meters long, currently on display at the BACC until next Wednesday 10 October, aims to mobilise tourists and Thai citizens to stop buying ivory.

WWF-Thailand launches “Travel Ivory Free” campaign WWF-Thailand launches “Travel Ivory Free” campaign

Ms. Yowalak Thiarachow, Country Director of WWF-Thailand, said: “The “Travel Ivory Free” campaign is a critical part of WWF-Thailand’s efforts to build public support to close the ivory market in Thailand.”

Every year, more than 20,000 elephants are killed in Africa and their tusks taken to supply ivory markets, primarily in Asia. As a result, the population of African elephants has dropped from 1.3 million in 1979 to approximately 415,000 in 2016. If this slaughter continues, the African elephant could go extinct in the wild.

“Trafficking of ivory and other wildlife is a transnational crime that is on par with drug trafficking, the arms trade and human trafficking. Wildlife crime destroys wildlife populations, wildlife-based livelihoods, and undermines the rule of law. It is a security issue as much as a conservation issue,” Ms. Yowalak said.

Thailand has long been a hub for the illegal ivory trade, but in the last four years the Thai government has taken strong steps to reduce the illegal ivory trade, primarily through the Elephant Ivory Act, which limits the trade to ivory from captive Asian elephants in Thailand, and by revising the Wild Animal Reservation and Protection Act to list the African elephant as a protected species.

As a conservation organization, WWF-Thailand hopes to put a complete end to the ivory trade through raising awareness about the plight of African elephants and calling on tourists and Thai citizens to stop buying ivory.

Mr. Tanes Petsuwan, TAT Deputy Governor of Marketing Communications, said: “Elephants have always held great cultural and national significance in Thailand. In many ways, they are seen as a friend and family to the Thai people.

“In the past, we have shown our commitment to ensure the preservation of elephants through the opening of an elephant conservation centre and even a hospital dedicated to elephants. For the majority of tourists traveling to Thailand, elephants are always a part of their ‘to-see’ list.

“To that end, it is great to see the launch of the “Travel Ivory Free” campaign as a means to end the ivory trade and advance tourism in Thailand as a driver of sustainable development.”

WWF-Thailand launches “Travel Ivory Free” campaign

The one-of-a-kind masterpiece, the mother and baby African elephant resin sculpture, was created by Silapathorn award-winning artist, Wasinburee Supanichvoraparch to show that buying ivory fuels the cruel and destructive poaching that is wiping out elephants across Africa

Wasinburee said: “My first thought on this art piece was that I wanted to create work that represented the cruelty and violence that was both surreal and went beyond reality. But the more I learned from photography and related information on the African elephant, the more I felt I could not capture the sadness associated with it. I realised that there was no way to truly represent the wretchedness and pain of reality in this world.

“This makes me wonder why there are still people who haven’t realized that it is not possible for those ivory accessories to create real beauty, pride, social status and blessings, when they are made from torture, loss and death.

“Nowadays, news and information are easily accessible. We constantly see this cruelty, but if we continue to consider this as distant from us, we will never stop the brutal killing. Or… are we just going to blame and question each other until the day that elephants no longer exist and become just a digital memory?”

Visitors are invited to take pictures of the life-size sculpture and share it online using the #TravelIvoryFree hashtag from 1-10 October, 2018, to show their support for ending the ivory trade by closing the ivory market in Thailand.

Bangkok comes up top in Mastercard’s 2018 Global Destination Cities Index

Bangkok comes up top in Mastercard’s 2018 Global Destination Cities Index

Bangkok, 4 October, 2018 – Bangkok is basking in the limelight of being named this year’s number one city in the world by the Mastercard’s 2018 Global Destination Cities Index, making it the third consecutive year that Thailand’s ‘City of Angels’ has been ranked in the top spot.

With roughly 20 million international overnight visitors, Bangkok retained the top spot again this year. According to the study, the top cities once again underscored the importance of robust infrastructure, both business and leisure attractions plus strong local culture. All are key components highlighted in recent Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) marketing campaigns.

TAT Governor Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn said TAT was delighted to hear the news of another award for Thailand’s capital city. “This is a wonderful validation for TAT’s ‘Amazing Thailand Open to the New Shades’ and ‘Go Local’ marketing initiatives. It identifies the length of stay and daily spending as two core criteria, and this is something to be very proud of.

“Of all the awards and accolades that Thailand, and Bangkok in particular, has received over the past year this is one of the most satisfying. The Mastercard Index is one of the leading international studies of its kind on world tourism growth that is based on key performance indicators.”

The study, which expanded this year to look at 162 cities, is not simply a ranking of the top travel destinations. Based on visitor volume and spending for the 2017 calendar year, the in-depth analysis also provides a growth forecast for 2018 and for the first time, a view into the average length of stay and amount spent per day.

The Mastercard Index predicted a strong annual growth for tourism arrivals of 9.6 percent in 2018 for Bangkok. It also noted the impressive fact that visitors stay in Bangkok for 4.7 nights on average with daily spending of over US$173 per day (5,563 Baht), amounting to US$16.36 billion in total in 2017. This placed the Thai capital in the 5th place of the Top Cities by Dollars Spent.

Meanwhile, Phuket has been ranked in the 10th place of the Top Cities by Dollars Spent with daily spending of US$239, or US$10.46 billion in total.

These latest honours continue a record-breaking year of awards for Thailand‘s travel sector in 2018. So far, it has received dozens of prestigious awards from the world’s leading travel organisations and lifestyle and travel media.

Thailand placed 3rd in the Best Country category of the highly respected Conde Nast Traveller UK 2018 Readers’ Travel Awards, and won two Best Destination Awards from Travel Weekly UK and TTG Asia. While Bangkok was also voted ‘Best Leisure Destination’ in the Asia-Pacific by Business Traveller Asia-Pacific magazine to name only a few.

TAT welcomes world’s famous riders to ‘PTT Thailand Grand Prix 2018’ MotoGP

Bangkok, 4 October 2018 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) extended a warm welcome to world famous riders ahead of the ‘PTT Thailand Grand Prix 2018’ MotoGP, which will be held from this Friday, 5 October to Sunday, 7 October, at the Chang International Circuit in Buri Ram.

TAT welcomes world’s famous riders to ‘PTT Thailand Grand Prix 2018’ MotoGP

Four-time MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez was warmly welcomed by TAT’s Director of International Public Relations Division, Mrs. Srimala Waraphaskul, at a welcoming ceremony held yesterday at the Royal Pavilion Mahajetsadabadin on Ratchadamnoen Avenue in the historic part of Bangkok.

Also attending the ceremony were officials, representatives and figures from the Sports Authority of Thailand, PTT Oil and Retail Business, A.P. Honda, Thai Yamaha Motor, and Buriram United International Circuit.

TAT also extended support to the production of a TVC, starring Marc Márquez, to promote Thailand as a sports tourism destination, and to promote Thailand’s first edition of MotoGP, which is the 15th event out of 19 races throughout the season.

The TVC will see Marc Márquez riding his bike around landmarks of Bangkok including the Democracy Monument and Giant Swing, as well as taking a ride in the city’s iconic tuk-tuk and enjoying Thai street food.

Thailand, through the Sports Authority of Thailand has secured a three-year deal with Dorna Sport, which is the holder of the rights of the FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix (MotoGP), to host the Grand Prix from 2018 to 2020, with Buriram United International Circuit as the rights manager of Thailand’s first edition of the MotoGP.

Marc Marquez will lead more than 90 talented drivers, including the one and only Thai to participate in the Moto3 World Championship throughout the season – the Honda Team Asia’s Nakarin Atiratphuvapat, alongside wild card Thai riders to excite motorsport fans in Thailand.

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