What makes Thailand so special? For one thing, it is the only country in Southeast Asia that has never been colonized by a foreign power. Though certainly influenced by the West, it has never had its culture or its political systems run over by outsiders--a fate suffered by all of its neighbors, from Vietnam to Indonesia. Thus Thailand is a curious mixture of Western entrepreneurial spirit, tough-minded Thai individualism, and a deep reverence for tradition. All this makes Thailand an ideal place to visit, a country bursting with natural beauty, famous for the hospitality of its people, and equipped with all the modern conveniences: a national transportation system, up-to-date urban centers, and an exciting cultural milieu, from historical sites to a booming nightlife. In fact, there's so much going on in Thailand that a good guidebook is absolutely essential, and Lonely Planet Thailand is one of the best.
Written by a former Peace Corps volunteer to Thailand who is deeply conversant in the country's language, culture, and history, Thailand offers travelers the most up-to-date information about which places to go and which to avoid, how to get there and get around once you're there, and how to keep yourself healthy and safe. Thailand tells you everything you need to know for a rewarding tour of a fascinating land. [via]