The country is a kingdom, and Thailand is the world's 50th largest country in terms of total area (slightly smaller than Yemen and slightly larger than Spain).
Thailand's culture One of the most distinctive Thai customs is the wai, which is similar to the Indian namaste gesture. Showing greeting, farewell, or acknowledgement, it comes in several forms reflecting the relative status of those involved, but generally it involves a prayer-like gesture with the hands and a bow of the head.
Physical demonstrations of affection in public are common between friends, but less so between lovers. It is thus common to see friends walking together holding hands, but couples rarely do so except in Westernized areas.
Thai cuisine is famous for the blending of four fundamental tastes:
sweet (sugar, fruits, sweet peppers), spicy hot (chilies), sour (vinegar, lime juice, tamarind)
salty (soy sauce, fish sauce). Most of the dishes in Thai cuisine try to combine most, if not all, of these tastes. It is accomplished by using a host of herbs, spices and fruit, including: chili, galangal, garlic, lime leaves, basil, sweet basil, lime, lemongrass, coriander, pepper, turmeric, and shallot.
In everyday life in Thailand, there is a strong emphasis on the concept of sanuk; the idea that life should be fun. Because of this, Thai can be quite playful at work and during day-to-day activities. Displaying positive emotions in social interactions is also important in Thai culture, so much so that Thailand is often referred to as the Land of Smiles.
The largest city in Thailand is Bangkok, the capital, which is also the country's center of political, commercial, industrial and cultural activities.