The infamous Golden Triangle with suggestions of illicit drug smuggling and uncertain frontiers, borders Northern Thailand, Eastern Burma and Western Laos. This refers to the area in which two thirds of the world's opium is produced. Please do remember that all non prescription drugs are highly illegal in Thailand and carries a very hefty jail term. Jail for westerners is not an good option here.
The production of opium
in Thailand has been mostly eliminated since the late 1950's but both
Laos and especially Burma still produce huge quantities. 2,500 tons
annually. Crops in Thailand have now been replaced with lots of tourist
type villages selling all the usual local handicrafts. There are plenty
of ancient towns and temples as well as the lush forested
landscape to explore.
There is a signpost near the ancient town of Chiang Saen on the
banks of the Mekong River directing tourists to this famous area on the
northern most tip of Thailand. This charming little market town was once
the site of an ancient and powerful settlement, dating back to 1295.
Located a short distance west of the town gate and up a small hill, is
the temple of Wat Phra That Chom Kitti from where you have a good view
of the surrounding area.
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