Saturday, 7 March 2009

Volunteer on a Gap Year in Thailand

The top gap year destination in Asia is definitely Thailand. Thailand has so much to offer to the traveller and in particular to the gay year traveller. Taking a Gap Year in Thailand is amazing! There is no other word that would better define the experience of Thailand.

Many travellers will be doing volunteer work in Thailand during their gap year. There are lots and lots of volunteer opportunities in Thailand. Lets take a closer look.

The Kingdom of Thailand lies in Southeast Asia. To its east lies Laos and Cambodia; to its south, the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia; and to its west Myanmar. For well seasoned travellers Thailand would for sure be in the top three travel destinations in the world. Thailand is the world's 49th-largest country. It is comparable in size to France, and somewhat larger than the US state of California.

Most of the Thai people are Buddhists of the Theravada tradition. Muslims are the second largest religious group in Thailand at 4.6%. Buddhism is central to modern Thai identity and belief. In practice, Thai Buddhism has evolved over time to include many regional beliefs originating from animism as well as ancestor worship.

In areas in the southernmost parts of Thailand, Islam is prevalent. Several different ethnic groups, many of which are marginalized, populate Thailand. Some of these groups overlap into Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, and Malaysia and have maintained a distinctly traditional way-of-life despite strong Thai cultural influence. Overseas Chinese also form a significant part of Thai society, particularly in and around Bangkok.

The best way to have a meaningful holiday in Thailand is to join a volunteering program. To volunteer in Thailand not only give you great volunteering experiences but it also give you the unique opportunity to get to know the real Thailand and its people.

Doing volunteer work in Thailand can be done on a gap year abroad, a career break or on a short term volunteer vacation. Thailand is a very easy country to travel so even a one week trip can be very rewarding. Many people love the country so much that they stay for much longer then they anticipates.

Thailand can be divided in three parts : the south, central and the north. The south of Thailand consist of holiday spots such as Samui, Phuket and Krabi. The centre is mainly Bangkok and the surrounding areas and the north has great cities such as Chiangmai and Chiangrai. The south is very relaxed and very much tourism oriented. Bangkok is a real hustle and bustle. And the north is the mountainous area with great cultural sights.

Volunteering can be done all over Thailand. The two main volunteer activities are teaching English and conservation.

Conservation work is mostly with animals such as volunteering with turtles and endangered animals. Teaching is done in schools and orphanages.

Taking a volunteering trip in Thailand will offer you the unique opportunity to understand this wonderful country in a very meaningful way. Also it will give you the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the unfortunate ones.

Thailand has a lot to offer for a volunteer and gap year travellers, called The Land of Smiles, Thailand really lives up to its reputation and more!

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