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The Golden Triangle - Indian Chief Travel
THAILAND  |  Chiang Rai, Thailand Travel Guide
Monday, June 17, 2024
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The Golden Triangle

The Golden Triangle

There's a certain disappointment that most tourists feel when they arrive at Sop Ruak, the small town that is at the center of the golden triangle. There are several placards and an impressive arch saying you’re at the golden triangle but little else. There is the odd hill-tribe dweller available for a cash-earning photo opportunity. The views across the river are spectacular and there are some good restaurants; at most you can combine the vistas with good Thai food. The nearby opium museum is worth a short visit and there is an abundance of souvenir stalls catering to the tour buses, which stop here throughout the day.

There is no definitive explanation of how the golden triangle got its name. The triangle is obviously the three countries that abut here – Thailand, Myanmar and Laos. It was within this area that most of the world’s opium was grown. Supposedly the opium dealers earned large amounts from the sale of the drug and that was where the gold came in. Sop Ruak sits at the junction of the Mekong and Sop Ruak rivers some 25 kilometers north of Chiang Rai. Opium production has been illegal in Thailand since 1959 and its production today has been virtually eliminated.We’re told that across the border in Myanmar the poppies continue to flourish.

Last updated December 6, 2007
Posted in   Thailand  |  Chiang Rai
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