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What you will see

Traditional Thai Market (Ta-lad)

 

Until today, Thai people have been shopping and socializing in traditional markets. Traditional markets provide people with their everyday needs not only economically but also socially. This traditional Thai market calls “Ta-lad” where most daily routine occur. This relationship has provided Thai people with the sense of place and connectedness. It is the place where people spent their time shopping for their daily basis and talking to each other. This activity is part of their everyday life. Which is unique characteristic of traditional Thai shopping environments has become a part of the cultural identity of the Thai people. In the market we visit it is very common to see “live bugs” available in the local market setting. Other “Thai delicacies” such as “frogs,” “eels,” “ant eggs” will also be seen, along with other seasonal delicacies. This should be one of your “must-see” items of your visit.


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Local School & Temple

 

For many centuries, “wat” or Buddhist temples have served as educational institutions for young citizens of Thailand. Though the influence of the western educational system has led to many changes, wat schools still function within the social context of the temples. Wats are the public gathering places where religious and social activities take place. There are about 30,000 temples in Thailand where monks live and conduct religious study. All the temples receive donation which is used for the maintenance of temples and its surroundings. In addition to this, some temples support social welfare activities for the benefit of the local communities. One of these includes running a school within the temple complex. During the tour in the countryside, we may stop by to visit the local school and participate in the classroom with the schoolchildren (weekdays only). In turn, you are helping schoolchildren to practice their English language.

 

Furthermore, because wat is served as community center, so in each community area you may find temple fair which usually occur once a year. Here is one of the places which you should find the real Thai experience.

 

Temple fairs are great fun to attend and it is the illustration of the wat’s community role and social focal point. Most temples continue the tradition of what are essentially fund-raising events, commemorate special event, and also occasions for “sa-nuk”—having fun. At these times the normally quiet temple compound becomes filled with swings and roundabouts, sideshows, and all other typical fun-of-the-fair amusement, while the otherwise serene air is rent by loudspeakers deafening noise blaring out raucous Thai music. The fair is very an old fashioned American county fair. Free outdoor movie theater, family brings their own mat and food, gather together watching Thai soap-operas during the nighttime till the night ended. Many stall selling local goods, clothes, kitchenware and other basic necessities. Best of all, you will find plenty of booths offering whatever edible item, no matter how disgusting you think it is, people will round up just to get taste of it—this is the local specialty.

 

 

 

Meet the Local People

 

During your cycling in countryside, the stops to talk to locals are frequent, although you may not be able to speak with them in Thai, but your tour guide will happily translate for you.

 

 

 

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