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Christmas Star Parade in Sakon Nakhon

[ Tourism News ] Posted by admin on 2014/11/24 15:30:00 (662 reads)

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is inviting local and international tourists to join a joyous festive parade and count glittering stars at the only annual Christmas Star Procession in the country in Sakon Nakhon. Ban Ta Rae in Mueang Sakon Nakhon district is home to Thailand's largest Roman Catholic community, which has been celebrating the Christmas Star Procession annually since 1982 to commemorate the Christmas nativity.

This year's festivity will start on 23 December at the 100-year-old Ta Rae community, where the colonial- and Vietnamese-style houses will be elaborately decorated with star-shaped lamps and glittering Christmas trees. The traditional Christmas star parade which is unique to Ban Ta Rae, and a mass at the community's cathedral, are set to take place on 24 December.

The spectacular Star Procession itself takes place on 25 December from 6 p.m. onwards, in Mueang Sakon Nakhon district. Over 200 vehicles will join the procession and these have been brightly decorated by members of the Roman Catholic communities of Sakon Nakhon, Nakhon Phanom, Mukdahan and Kalasin.

Also joining the procession will be traditional Christmas figures; such as, Santa Claus and angels. But the real atmosphere is generated by the thousands of Christian pilgrims and locals who join in the procession with their own glittering star lanterns.

For more information, contact
Sakon Nakhon Cultural Office, Tel +66 (042) 716247
Sakon Nakhon Provincial Administration, Tel +66 (042) 711773
Ta Rae-Nong Saeng Christian Church, Tel +66 (042) 711272
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TAT happy with October recovery

[ Tourism News ] Posted by admin on 2014/11/24 14:50:00 (630 reads)
BANGKOK, 24 November 2014 A 67% surge in arrivals from China helped Thailand record an overall growth of 6.14% in visits in October, the first month of positive growth this year.

Tourist arrivals reached 2,180,601 in October including 501,043 trips from China, giving it a market share of 23%. The upturn raised arrivals in January to October to 19,736,600.

An analysis by the Ministry of Tourism and Sports said that the main reason for the growth in Chinese arrivals was temporary suspension of a visa fee over three months ending 8 November.

The visa-fee waiver, applicable for both mainland China and Taiwan was a short-term tactical measure to raise arrivals during a peak holiday period for Chinese in October.

Three specially assigned "Chinese lanes" and five "premium lanes" were added at the main gateway Suvarnabhumi Airport. Chinese-speaking translators were also stationed throughout the airport to assist travellers.

Tourism Authority of Thailand governor, Thawatchai Arunyik said "We are pleased that the visa-fee waiver produced results. It is the first positive upturn in arrivals this year, and we are optimistic that the growth will continue in both November and December."

Other highlights of visitor arrivals in October 2014, with comparative figures over October 2013

Malaysia was the second biggest source market with arrivals of 262,803, up by 11.05%.

Singapore recorded arrivals of 79,564, up by 4.92%.

Arrivals from some of the neighbouring ASEAN countries showed good growth; Myanmar (+48.65%), Cambodia (+16.40%), the Philippines (+4.60%), and Brunei (+0.99%).

Arrivals from Israel were up 78.7% to 14,475, also due to a long holiday in that country.

Travel from India, the biggest source market in South Asia, rose 9.14% to 87,990.

Bangladesh showed a growth of 12.87% to 10,330.

Visitors from Sri Lanka grew by 0.93% to 7,378.

For 2014, TAT has set a target of 25.5 million visitors and foreign exchange earnings of THB1.20 trillion.

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The 8th Siam Paragon Bangkok Royal Orchid Paradise

[ Tourism News ] Posted by admin on 2014/11/22 12:00:00 (795 reads)

Siam Paragon is organising the 8th majestic orchid exhibition "Siam Paragon Bangkok Royal Orchid Paradise" under the "Magnificent Orchid A Borderless Path To ASEAN Paradise" theme. The event, from 26 November to 1 December 2014, will feature more than 600,000 beautiful orchid blossoms. Some of the orchids presented are from the ten ASEAN member countries. Some of the most beautiful and finest orchid blossoms will be used to decorated two five-metre tall structures, in the shape of Hanuman and Yaksha from the famous Ramayana legend.

The orchid-giants will tower next to the Thai-styled gate representing the door to ASEAN amid the splendour of the dazzling orchid orchard at Botanical Garden on M floor in the centre of Siam Paragon. During the event, there will be an exhibition showcasing the best selected orchids from each province around the country. Orchids to be on display will include Dendrobium Pompadour from Bangkok, Famui from Chiang Mai, Vando Udorn Sunshine fron Udonthani, and Daeng Ubon from Ubonthani.

There are also informative exhibitions such as the model orchids with four new orchid species found in Thailand Wan Pendin Yen Umpang, Eungkleeb Tid Phannga and Eung Rangnok Thai Thong. There are also orchid arrangements by leading hotels Siam Kempinski and Royal Orchid Sheraton. Activities include orchid art exhibition from Toshiba Thailand Company Limited. Orchids and gardening equipment will be on sale at special prices and have the opportunity to purchase high quality products from the Royal Projects. The highlight is the orchid competition that will see the winners being award the trophy by Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn.
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Thailand's travel slump extends to October

[ Tourism News ] Posted by admin on 2014/11/21 11:40:00 (702 reads)
BANGKOK, 21 November 2014 International tourist arrivals to Thailand posted a decline of 8.72% during January to October this year according to Ministry of Tourism and Sports' data.

Released Tuesday, the ministry data reported 19,739,600 visits to the country during the first 10 months, down from 21,626,233 over the same period last year.

Tourism and Sports Minister, Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul, projects Thailand tourism will welcome over 25 million international tourists by year-end.

Due to the political turmoil since late last year the kingdom's tourism, this year,will drop by 1 million to reach 25 million visits, she explained.

The original target was 28 million arrivals and THB2 trillion in tourism related revenue.

In October alone, foreign travellers recorded 2,180,601 visits, an increase of 6.14% from 2,054,548 visits during the same month last year.

By regions, all markets recorded increases except Europe, the Americas and Oceania in October.

East Asia (ASEAN included) reported an increase of 15.10% from 1,200,509 to 1,381,735 visits.

East Asia improvements
China (+67.02%); Myanmar (+48.65%); Cambodia (+16.40%); Malaysia (+11.05%); Singapore (+4.92%); Philippines (+4.60%); and Brunei (+0.99%).

The markets that showed declines were: Laos (-21.24%); Indonesia (-18.88%); South Korea (-15.03%); Vietnam (-14.03%); Japan (-10.11%); Taiwan (-8.55%); and Hong Kong (-1.29%).

South Asia
South Asia represented a 7.30% increase from 109,679 to 117,682 visits. India led the field supplying 87,990 visits and growing 9.14% from 80,623 followed by Bangladesh (10,330; +12.87%), Sri Lanka (7,378; +0.93%); Pakistan (5,934; -15.57%), and Nepal (2,844; +4.41%).

Middle East
The Middle East gained 6.47% from 56,352 to 59,999 visits. Israel led the field with 14,475 visits increasing 78.73% from 8,099. Other main markets: United Arab Emirates (11,427; +0.35%); Kuwait (5,554; -20.13%); Egypt (2,791; -22.75%); and Saudi Arabia (1,054; -59.18%).

Africa recorded a growth of 0.80% from 13,383 to 13,490 visits. The main market South Africa improved just 1.12% from 5,829 to 5,894 visits.

The Americas dropped 6.62% from 97,737 to 91,268. Brazil posted an 18.61% increase from 3,273 to 3,882.

The United States recorded the highest arrivals at 64,130 down 6.28% from 68,824 followed by Canada (16,837; -10.79%); and Argentina (1,305; -12.24%).

Oceania represented a slowdown of 8.65% from 91,374 to 83,470. The main market Australia declined 7.84% (73,943) and New Zealand was down 14.66% (9,177).

Europe posted a decline of 10.83% from 485,514 to 432,955. The markets recording declines were Austria (-33.22%); Russia (-23.24%); Spain (-15.88%); Norway (-14.27%); Sweden (-10.47%); Denmark (-9.63%); Finland (-7.84%); Netherlands (-6.52%); Belgium (-5.64%); Switzerland (-3.42%); Germany (-3.19%); France (-1.88%); the United Kingdom (-1.31%); and Italy (-1.26%).

Ireland and East Europe were the only two identified markets that showed increases of 1.49% (4,906) and 0.84% (24,129) respectively.

In addition, the tourism ministry reported international tourists at the country's gateway Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports in October improving 4.20% rising from 1,352,139 to 1,408,889 visits.

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Zeavola scoops award

[ Tourism News ] Posted by admin on 2014/11/21 11:30:00 (637 reads)
PHI PHI, THAILAND, 21 November 2014 Zeavola Resort, located on Phi Phi in Thailand, has scooped the global prize for the World's Best Sustainable Boutique Hotel at the World Boutique Hotels Awards ceremony in London recently.

The exclusive black tie event was held at Montcalm Hotel, Marble Arch and represented resorts globally that have won country specific awards in various categories.

It was Zeavola's night, said general manager, Florian Hallermann. All the team have worked tremendously hard and I am very proud of them all. This is for them, he said.

We operate on an island and we need to live sustainably, close to nature and to the environment. For us it is not an option to operate otherwise.

Located on the shores of Laem Ton beach, Zeavola is built around a sustainability ethos, with features such as a water reserve system, which includes four deep wells and a reverse osmosis plant to minimise unnecessary water consumption at the resort. These efforts earned the resort a membership in the international 'green' hotels group Green Pearls.

The resort was also recently awarded the PADI Green Star Award, for outstanding contribution to the environment through the resort's project Coral Freedom.

This is a project focussed on reversing the devastating effects of coral bleaching, a consequence of high carbon footprints and increasing global warming, and have so far seen over 10,000 coral fragments replanted around Phi Phi that were regenerated in Zeavola's coral nursery.

Zeavola is also part of the Green Fins project, which is coordinated by the United Nations Environmental Programme as part of a global effort to increase public awareness, and resort management practices that will benefit the conservation of coral reefs and reduce unsustainable tourism practices.
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