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The Return of Leatherback Turtles in Phuket
Even though the pandemic has brought the stop the world, it has also allowed the nature to revive and heal itself.  In Phuket, we had witnessed many leatherback turtles have returned to lay their eggs after a long time of absence since 2017. These ancient leatherback turtles are the largest turtle in the world both for fresh water and sea water. What make them so unique is their leather shells and the pattern that look like starfruit. Since they rely fully on nature for their well-being, fertile nature become most impact factor of their distinction. Phuket and Phang Nga are the ideal places for them to lay eggs especially when the tourists were away.   On the morning of new year 2021, one of the leatherback mothers came ashore to lay her eggs on Kata Beach, one of the most popular beaches in Phuket. The number of nests continue to grow from 13 nests last year to 18 nests altogether this year. This phenomenon is one of the evident that nature have return to fertility.   After the world return to its normal stage, Thailand will continue to work on green tourism and welcome all the travelers close to the nature and the beauty that Thailand has to offer.
Thailand reopening roadmap goes ahead amid COVID-19 vaccine rollout
Phuket will be the first to lift quarantine for vaccinated foreign tourists from July onwards, followed by at least five other destinations from October The Tourism Authority of Thailand’s (TAT) roadmap to reopen six major tourist provinces – Phuket, Krabi, Phang Nga, Surat Thani (Ko Samui), Chon Buri (Pattaya) and Chiang Mai – to foreign tourists who have received two doses of COVID-19 vaccine is going ahead as scheduled in line with the country’s COVID-19 vaccination timeline. Phuket will be the first destination to lift quarantine requirements for vaccinated foreign tourists under the ‘Phuket Sandbox’ programme, starting from 1 July, 2021. Tourists will be required to spend the first seven days on the island, before travelling to other Thai destinations. In preparation to welcome vaccinated foreign tourists, authorities are working on vaccination programme to safely achieve herd immunity against COVID-19 for 70% of Phuket’s population, including residents, workers in tourism-related businesses, and migrant workers. Nationwide, the government is striving to efficiently administer the COVID-19 situation and acquire additional vaccines to reach the target of 100 million doses to vaccinate 50 million people across Thailand by the end of the year. Thailand started the preliminary vaccination programme in late February with the first 200,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine from Sinovac and 117,000 doses from AstraZeneca. The inoculation project continued with 800,000 more doses of Sinovac vaccine in March and one million more in April. Bangkok, Phuket, Chon Buri which includes Pattaya, Chiang Mai, and Surat Thani which includes Ko Samui, Ko Phangan and Ko Tao, as well as eight other high-risk provinces were being prioritised in the rollout of the first vaccine doses. Until today, some 1.47 million people in Thailand have been vaccinated – with one or both doses. Meanwhile, the country’s mass vaccination rollout is scheduled to begin in June when the first batch of six million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, to be produced locally by Siam Bioscience, will be delivered. The amount will increase to 10 million doses a month between July and November, and the last batch of five million doses in December. In addition to 63 million doses (61 million from AstraZeneca and two million from Sinovac), the government is in the process of acquiring 37 million more doses of vaccine to be delivered within this year. This may include 5-10 million doses each from Pfizer, Sputnik V, Johnson & Johnson and Sinovac, as well as from Moderna, Sinopharm and Bharat. According to the government, all people in Thailand, regardless of nationality, are eligible to receive the vaccine and can register for the vaccination programme via the Mor Prom (“Doctors Ready”) Line official account, or at hospitals and health promotion hospitals nationwide. Registration starts on 1 May, 2021, and the vaccination starts on 7 June, 2021, for the priority group, comprising people aged 60 or older and those with seven chronic diseases: lung disease, kidney disease, heart disease, stroke, obesity, diabetes, and cancer. Other groups or people aged 18-59 can register in July 2021, and the vaccination starts in August 2021. The government expects the nationwide vaccine rollout to complete within four to seven months, or between September and December, 2021. With the vaccination programme going ahead as planned, Thailand’s reopening roadmap will also go ahead as scheduled. Apart from Phuket, Krabi, Phang Nga, Surat Thani (Ko Samui), Chon Buri (Pattaya) and Chiang Mai, other destinations in the reopening pipeline include Bangkok, Phetchaburi, and Prachuap Khiri Khan (Hua Hin). To prepare Nordic and Baltic tourism industry of the reopening, Tourism Authority of Thailand (Stockholm office)is organizing Thailand Amazing Beaches and Islands Virtual Trade Meet Nordic & Baltic 2021 on June 9th, 2021. For more information and registration please visit here.
Phuket to reopen for tourists with no quarantine from 1 July, 2021
Thailand authority, the Centre for Economic Situation Administration (CESA) has given the green light to reopen Phuket, allowing international tourists who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 to visit the island with no quarantine, starting from July 1, 2021 – the first destination to reopen for international tourists. For travellers to feel safe, the entire island’s population would be vaccinated at least 70% to get the herd immunity as well as to get the project’s rolling. It means that Phuket’s residents are prioritised for the vaccine roll-out with more than 930,000 doses to be administered before the reopening.  Phuket is the pioneer model for reopening the country for international tourists before expanding to other key tourist destinations such as Koh Samui, Krabi, Chiang Mai. The Phuket reopening plan means that the destination is opened three months earlier than the rest of Thailand which is set to reopen in October to those who are fully vaccinated.  3 stages of reopening Thailand for international tourists From April1 2021, Thailand reduced the mandated quarantine period from 14 days to 7 days for fully vaccinated travellers in Phuket, Krabi, Phanga, Koh Samui, Chonburi (Pattaya) and Chiang Mai. For those who have not yet been vaccinated, the quarantine period is reduced from 14 days to 10 days in the entire country. From July 1 2021, Phuket will be the first province to waive the mandated quarantine requirement for international travellers who have been fully  vaccinated and they are required to stay in Phuket for 7 days before travelling to other destinations. This is a part of the government’s plan to reopen the country. For other destinations, a seven days quarantine period is still required. From October 1 2021, quarantine is expected to be lifted in Phuket, Krabi, Phanga, Koh Samui, Chonburi (Pattaya) and Chiang Mai for foreign  visitors who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Phuket’s model will be applied to five other main destinations before a full reopening of the country is expected to take place in January. However, the plan to reopen Phuket to vaccinated foreign tourists in stages is pending the official announcement. Travellers are recommended to enquire at the Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate in their home country for more details. What do travellers need to prepare before departure? Under the plan, tourists are required to show COE, a vaccine certificate, vaccine passport or International Air Transport Association (IATA) travel pass as well as a negative PCR test before at least 72 hours before departure. Upon arrival at the Phuket International Airport, tourists will be required to undergo a COVID-19 screening, including PCR tests, and download the specified track and trace application to ensure that they only visit the designated areas.
Golfing while staying in quarantine in Thailand now the reality
The Thai cabinet approved recently golf quarantine to boost tourism in Thailand. Allowing golf quarantine is essential to let those who wish to pass their quarantine time on the golf course. Rules and regulations for safety are in place. Thus, this is the significant step for Thailand to open the country for international tourists who do not wish to stay in a single room or area for several days.  The 6 golf courses have now been certified by the health department as alternative state quarantines for Thailand. The 15 nights quarantine time remains. Golfers will have to stay at the golf resort and cannot leave. They can only go out to play golf. The golf courses will be closed for the public and serve as state alternative quarantine only. Mida Golf Club (Kanchanaburi) Sawang Golf Club (Cha-am) Blue Star Golf Course (Kanchanaburi) Evergreen Hills Golf Club & Resort (Kanchanaburi) Artitaya Chiang Mai Golf Resort (near Chiang Mai) Artitaya Country Club (Nakorn Nayok) What is golf quarantine? A 15 nights quarantine in a certified golf course. A quick PCR-test will be  conducted on the 3rd day. The result will come out within 24 hours. If the test shows a negative result, the golfer can play golf on the next day.  If the result is positive, the infectious golfer must be transferred to the contracted hospital and all members of the group must be under surveillance quarantine. The golfers will be tested about 3 times during the quarantine period. Enjoy up to 11 days unlimited golf rounds during the quarantine period. Is it safe? The Ministry of Public Health in Thailand will examine the golf course’s health safety management plan and will do an on site inspection to check the entire system before giving out the certification. The transfer from the airport to the golf course must be in a closed system, meaning no stopping on the way to the golf course. In addition, the driver must pass Covid-free testing and the bus is sanitized. The golf course must have a contracted hospital to provide PCR tests for the golfers and their companions as well as to take care of the infected cases. All staff at the golf course must stay in the golf course. They are not allowed contacting outsiders nor going out of the golf resort. They will be quarantined as well as the golfers.  Thus all the measurements and steps taken are to ensure the safety and well-being of international golfers who would like to enjoy their golf games in Thailand. Travel without visas Thailand has allowed foreigners to enter the country by air under the Visa Exemption program. Travellers can travel without obtaining a visa and can stay up to 45 days. The travellers need a certificate to show they are free of Covid-19 72 hours before travel. They must obtain a Certificate of Entry (COE), provide health insurance covering covid-19 and undergo the mandatory quarantine.  Check the Royal Thai Embassy or consulate in your home country for updates on the visas and Certificate of Entry (COE) process.  As of 2021-04-01, Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Latvia and Lithuania are allowed to enter the kingdom. The approval list of countries will be updated twice a month and can be found here. The Royal Thai Embassy in Sweden The Royal Thai Embassy in Denmark The Royal Thai Embassy in Norway The Royal Thai Embassy in Finland After the quarantine period, golfers can enjoy playing golf anywhere in Thailand. It is easier to book tee time and enjoy the golf games and beautiful nature while there are fewer tourists in Thailand.  For more information about golf quarantine, please visit www.golfquarantine.com  Contact persons for more information and reservation Golf Digg, golfquarantine@golfdigg.com Pro Golf in Thailand, Juha-Matti “Juhis” Vuorinen, juhamatti_vuorinen@hotmail.com Remarks *The arrival day counts as day 0. 
Happy New Year 2021 best wishes to the world
IT’s the beginning of a brand-new year.May 2021 be a year of Happiness… A year of great health…And also a year of smile… Wishing you a very Happy New YearUntil, we meet again. Amazing Thailand #amazingthailand
Thai Massaman curry topped “The World’s 50 Best Foods,” CNN Travel
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is pleased to announce that CNN Travel has placed Thai Massaman curry as the No. 1 dish in “The World’s 50 Best Foods list, along with Tom Yum Kung in the eighth place and Som Tam papaya salad, which ranked at 46th. Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor, said, “This listing is a testament to the already solid reputation of Thai cuisine that is increasingly perceived as a world-class culinary experience. Thailand is certainly a great destination for foodie tourism. “Once the COVID-19 situation improves, we are more than ready to welcome tourists and foodies from around the world to embark on a culinary journey and explore Thainess through Thai dishes in unique destinations across Thailand.”The CNN Travel World’s 50 Best Foods list was published since 2017 and have been updated ever since. CNN Travel staff said that they had scoured the planet for what they thought were 50 of the most delicious foods ever created. The three Thai dishes were ranked and described as follows: Massaman curry, 1st place: Emphatically the king of curries, and perhaps the king of all foods. Spicy, coconutty, sweet and savoury. Even the packet sauce you buy from the supermarket can make the most delinquent of cooks look like a Michelin potential. Thankfully, someone invented rice, with which diners can mop up the last drizzles of curry sauce. “The Land of Smiles” isn’t just a marketing catch-line. It’s a result of being born in a land where the world’s most delicious food is sold on nearly every street corner. Tom Yum Kung, 8th place: This best food Thai masterpiece teems with shrimp, mushrooms, tomatoes, lemongrass, galangal and kaffir lime leaves. Usually loaded with coconut milk and cream, the hearty soup unifies a host of favourite Thai tastes: sour, salty, spicy and sweet. Best of all is the price: cheap. Som Tam papaya salad, 46th place: To prepare Thailand’s most famous salad, pound garlic and chilies with a mortar and pestle. Toss in tamarind juice, fish sauce, peanuts, dried shrimp, tomatoes, lime juice, sugar cane paste, string beans and a handful of grated green papaya. Grab a side of sticky rice. Variations include those made with crab (som tam pu) and fermented fish sauce (som tam pla ra), but none matches the original’s flavour and simple beauty. For more information click here
Thailand starts reopening the country
Thailand is beginning cautiously its first step in reopening the country for international visitors
Chiang Khan and Nan Old City listed among the “2020 Sustainable Top 100 Destinations”
Chiang Khan and Nan Old City listed among the “2020 Sustainable Top 100 Destinations”
TAT introduces “Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration: SHA” certification
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), in collaboration with the public and private sector partners, is introducing an “Amazing Thailand Safety and HealthAdministration: SHA” certification aimed at elevating the country’s tourism industry standards and developing confidence among international and domestic tourists. The project is part of TAT’s efforts to mitigate the impacts of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis and accelerate recovery in the travel and tourism sector. The Amazing Thailand SHA certification is to prepare Thai tourism operators to be ready for the return of tourism post COVID-19. TAT is currently working on details of the Amazing Thailand SHA certification together with the Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Tourism and Sports, Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau, Board of Trade of Thailand, Federation of Thai Spa and Wellness Association, Thai Retailers Association, Thai Hotels Association, Association of Domestic Travel, Thai Amusement and Leisure Park Association, Thai Restaurant Association, Thai Spa Association, Thai Boats Association, and Event Management Association. Works in the process include establishing the SHA criteria, introducing the committee, preparing the application and selection process, and planning marketing and publicity for the SHA-certified tourism establishments and services. The evaluation methods and methodology of assessment for tourism establishments and services to be certified with the Amazing Thailand SHA certification will cover five key areas. Tourism establishments and services must strictly follow the COVID-19 control guidelines by the Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health. The safety of attractions and facilities with development plans or operation procedures that focus on ensuring tourist safety while maintaining local culture and promoting interaction between local communities and tourists. Hygiene and sanitation in tourism establishments and services; such as, homestays, lodges, souvenir shops and restaurants. Convenience, cleanliness, and safety of linkages between communities and attractions, as well as the safety and health standards of transportation, including private cars, public buses, and airlines. The confidence in tourism personnel in tourism establishments, including tourist safety and security protocol For more information click here
Fifteen Thai villages conferred first Thailand Rural Tourism Awards 2020
Fifteen village communities nationwide have become the first recipients of the Thailand Rural Tourism Award 2020 launched by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to help the villages attract visitors and create jobs in the rural areas. Bangkok, 28 September 2020 – Fifteen village communities nationwide have become the first recipients of the Thailand Rural Tourism Award 2020 launched by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to help the villages attract visitors and create jobs in the rural areas. Her Royal Highness Princess Ubolratana presided over the royal awards ceremony on 27 September, World Tourism Day, at the Grand Hall, The Athenee Hotel, Bangkok, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Bangkok. In his opening remarks, H.E. Mr. Pipat Ratchakitprakarn, Minister of Tourism and Sports, said the inaugural awards were the result of very successful cooperation between more than 40 organisations, including government agencies, educational institutions, the private sector and the mass media. These included the Community Development Department, Department of Tourism, Department of Cultural Promotion, Department of Agricultural Extension, Department Of Industrial Promotion, Cooperative Promotion Department, Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism (DASTA), Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB), National Village and Urban Community Fund Office, Government Savings Bank, Bank for Agriculture and Cooperatives, PTT Global Chemical Public Company Limited, Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT), public universities, travel agents, and tourism associations totalling 40 agencies. He congratulated all the winners and also praised the many other tourism villages for their ongoing efforts to raise their standards and maintain the product quality, which reflect their own identity of community and the beautiful nature drawing the tourists to visit. TAT Governor Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn said that all communities underwent a very strict selection process and were judged by a panel of experts based on a voting formula of 70% committee members and 30% media representatives. The winners received a plaque from Her Royal Highness Princess Ubolratana. All of the 15 awarded villages will be provided with sales and marketing support. They are divided into five categories including: 1. Best Creative Experience Village: Winner: Ban Chiang Cultural Tourism Community in Udon Thani Province 1st Runner-up: Ban Laem Homestay Mangrove Forest Conservation Group Enterprise (Na Thap House) in Nakhon Si Thammarat Province 2nd Runner-up: Ban Hat Som Paen Community-based Tourism Group in Ranong Province 2. Best Agro-tourism Village: Winner: Ban Huai Hom Community-based Tourism in Mae Hong Son Province 1st Runner-up: Wang Nam Khiao Agricultural Tourism Community Enterprise Group in Nakhon Ratchasima Province 2nd Runner-up: Ban Nong San Community-based Tourism in Sakon Nakhon Province 3. Best Homestay: Winner: Ban Tha Khanthong Homestay in Chiang Rai Province 1st Runner-up: Ban Mae Kampong Ecotourism Village in Chiang Mai Province 2nd Runner-up: Bo Hin Farm Stay (a community enterprise to raise fish) in Trang Province 4. Best Responsible Tourism: Winner: Ban Thung Yipeng Ecotourism Community Enterprise in Krabi Province 1st Runner-up: Sappaya Old Police Station Market Community in Chainat Province 2nd Runner-up:  Ban Khao Lak (Rafting Community Enterprise) in Trang Province 5. Best for Company Outing: Winner: Ban Rim Klong Homestay in Samut Songkhram Province 1st Runner-up: Ban Tham Suea Homestay in Phetchaburi Province 2nd Runner-up: Takhian Tia Community in Chon Buri Province In addition, the project includes opportunities for those interested to win awards for packaging, promoting, and selling the tourism villages via online channels. The winner is those who can sell the maximum number of vouchers. The list of the winning teams are as follows: Winner: Ban Khao Lak (Rafting Community Enterprise) in Trang Province 1st Runner-up: Ban Tham Suea Homestay in Phetchaburi Province 2nd Runner-up: Ban Tha Khanthong Homestay in Chiang Rai Province 3rd Runner-up: Ban Laem Homestay Mangrove Forest Conservation Group Enterprise (Na Thap House) in Nakhon Si Thammarat Province 4th Runner-up: Prasae Homestay in Rayong Province With the highest total scores of all categories, this made Ban Tha Khanthong Homestay in Chiang Rai Province receive the Best of Thailand Rural Tourism Award 2020. Mr Yuthasak said, “This will maximise the publicity and promotional exposure for the villages, build confidence amongst potential visitors, and improve the brand image of Thai tourism in preparation for the post-COVID-19 pandemic period. It is in line with our overall emphasis on aligning the benefits of tourism with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.” Contact InformationInternational Public Relations DivisionTourism Authority of ThailandTel: +66 (0) 2250 5500 ext. 4545-48Fax: +66 (0) 2250 0246E-mail: prdiv3@tat.or.thWebsite: www.tatnews.orgFacebook: TATNews.org

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