Amazing Thailand Facts! (Part 4)

Here are another 20 amazing Thailand facts as compiled over on the Forums. You can see the other facts already posted by clicking here.

1. Siamese Twins

122. Chang Bunker and Eng Bunker were the famous conjoined twins who gave birth to the term ‘Siamese twins.’ They were born in Samutsongkram province of Siam (as Thailand was known back then) in 1811. They made their way to America eventually settling in North Carolina where they married local women and fathered 21 children between them. The Bunkers were fierce Confederate supporters, and two of their sons, Stephen and Christopher, served in a Virginia Cavalry unit during the Civil War (Christopher was a P.O.W. in a Yankee prison camp). (InterestedGuy)

2. Origins of the word Farang as in Guava.

A Guava was known as a ‘Farang’ years before the French arrived. It was the Portuguese who originally brought the Guava to Thailand, and the fruit was called a Farang after the Persian traders (the original farangs/Franks). Ton Farang = Frank’s Tree (S. Cleary)

Other relevant Persian words from this trading era in Thai include:

Dork Kularp = Rose
Angun = Grape
Kalam Phlii = Cauliflower
Kalam Dork = Cabbage

3. The worlds smallest aircraft carrier.

Thailand has the worlds smallest aicraft carrier, The Chakri Naruebet (Thai ???????????), which was ordered in 1994, at a cost of 7 billion Baht, and commisioned in to service in 1997. It carries a total of 10 aircraft. However due to a lack of funding it has spend very little time at sea and can usually be seen tied up at Sattahip Naval Dockyard (David)

4. Thailand’s most successful ”rock” band with Filipino name.

The Thai life band, Carabao, was named when it was formed by singer Aed and friends when they were studying in the Philippines, and “Carabao” is Tagalog for ”buffalo”. (Sparky). Aed graduated in the Philippines. (S. Cleary)

5. Thailand’s currency went metric in 1897.

The decimal system of currency in Thailand was devised by Prince Mahisorn and introduced by King Chulalongkorn in 1897. This divided the Baht in to 100 Satang. Prior to then the Baht was divided in to 8 fuang (?????), each of 8 ath (???). (David)

6. Thai Expatriates

There are more Thai expatriates per capita in Switzerland than anywhere else in the world. (Thais are attracted to Switzerland as it is where the King grew up and attended school, and therefore has a sort of mythical allure to them) (PoochaiNarak)

7. Buddhist Temple Abroad

The biggest Thai Buddhist temple outside of Thailand is the massive $3million temple dedicated to the memory of its patron the late HRH Princess Sangwal outside of Zurich Switzerland (PoochaiNarak)

8. Thai-Chinese

There are no exact figures, but it is estimated that over 1,000,000 Chinese migrants arrived in Thailand between 1920 and 1940. (S. Cleary)

9. Biggest Selling Album Ever

The best-selling album of all time was the soundtrack for ‘Mon Rak Luk Thung’. Mon Rak Luk Thung, as a movie, was first aired in the 1960s and albums sold in their millions after the Channel 7 TV Drama of the same name in 1994. (S. Cleary)

10. Heaviest Schoolbags

Thai elementary schoolkids have to carry heaviest bags to school, in contrary to university students. (Solosou)

“Mitr and Petchara: Thailand’s most popular film stars of all time”

11. Most Popular Thai Actor

Hailing from Phetchaburi province, Thailand’s most popular actor of all time is the legendary Mitr Chaibancha. Mitr starred in more than 300 movies and was known as Thailand’s equivalent of Charles Bronson. Sadly, Mitr fell to his death during a helicopter stunt in 1970 at the tender age of just 36. Unlike the star actors of nowadays, Mitr was pretty dark-skinned! (S. Cleary)

12. Most Popular Thai Actress

Once nicknamed ‘Honey Eyes’ because of her beautiful round eyes, Petchara Chaowarat born in Rayong province is Thailand’s most popular ever actress. She starred in over 300 movies mostly alongside Mitr Chaibancha. Sadly, her eyesight seriously deteriorated and is now virtually blind. Rarely venturing out, she lives in seclusion with her husband. (S. Cleary)

13. The King’s Mother Language

King Bhumiphol and his elder brother King Ananda (King Rama IX & VIII) only ever spoke their mother language together – French. (S. Cleary)


The people of the north-east are often stereotyped as not the brightest people and certainly not the most successful in the land, but wait for it:

14. Tony Jaa

Tony, actor, star of Ong Bak (1 and 2) and Tom Yum Goong — from Surin. (Sparky)

15. Pira Sudham

Pira Sudham from Buriram was nominated for the Nobel Prize for Literature for his novel Monsoon Country, The Voice of Isarn (Surawat)

16. Paradon Srichapan

Paradon, a Khon Kaen native, was once a world’s top-ten ranked tennis player (Surawut)

17. Petchtai Wongkamlao
Also known as Mum Jokmok, has starred in mega films such as: Ong Bak, Tom-Yum Goong, Killer Tattoo, Yam Yasothorn, and Dumber Heroes. He’s from Yasothorn. (Pailin)

18. Phra Ajarn Mun Bhuridatto

(1870-1949) Ubol Ratchathani
Perhaps the most revered monk in modern Thai history and undoubtedly one of the most globally influential. Ajarn Mun and another Isarn monk Ajarn Sao founded the Forest Meditation Tradition, a tradition which would later spread Theravada Buddhism throughout the world. (S. Cleary)

19. Somluck Kamsing

Born in Khon Kaen ,on 16th January 1973. He is the first Thai athlete to win an Olympic gold medal. It was in the men’s Featherweight category at the 1996 Summer Olympics. (Anatta)

20. Sek Loso

Sek Loso or Seksan Sukpimay has been one of the most successful Thai rock singers of all time. He was born on 7th August 1974 ,in Nakhon Ratchasima. (Anatta)

3 responses to “Amazing Thailand Facts! (Part 4)