Thailand is a country that is as diversified as it is amazing. However, for the traveler from Muslim countries or for those with a special diet of kosher or vegetarian food, this issue can crop up, as Thailand seemingly offers more Westernized and Thai food that does not really practice the Kosher or Halal methods of food preparation. This myth can now be put aside as Thailand is currently in the field to attract more tourists from the Muslim countries as well as those who are sensitive to certain types of food.
The certification of “Halal” means that food is prepared in the ways accorded by the Muslim community. There are diverse communities of Muslim in Thailand as well, so the availability of this type of food preparation is not scarce. Most hotels already practice this method to attract Muslim customers and even for some fast food preparations it is a staple offering. There are Muslim communities in Bangkok as well as other parts of Thailand that provides such cuisine.
Apart from that, there is also the option of vegetarian food where most of the ingredients are soy, vegetable and gluten base. As Thailand is predominantly a Buddhist country, vegetarian food is easily available. There are options from Indian vegetarian restaurants to Thai vegetarian restaurants. Therefore, the travelers who are reliant on these types of cuisine will not find it difficult to obtain.
This in turn offers a wider selection of cuisine for gastronomes in Thailand as we now get to savor a more diverse choice of international cuisine from the usual fare. Visitors from these countries will now also be able to fully enjoy their holidays to Thailand, without the worry of where and what to eat or where they can perform their daily prayers.
Aside from the food issue, most major hotels also provide Signage in the rooms to indicate the direction for prayers for the Muslim traveler, also known as the direction of “Kiblat.” Some places for sightseeing also have special places or rooms for prayers specifically for Muslim travelers. The sensitivity of these travelers is on the increase in the tourism sector as Thailand is all out to increase its tourism intake from such countries as Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Middle East.
It would also interest the Muslim traveler to know that there are several mosques within Bangkok itself where if they so desire, can go and perform their daily prayers if they are staying longer than the time allocated for “kadur”, or known as combining two sessions or more of prayer a day to a singular prayer session.
That being said, there is no reason why Thailand is only suitable for certain types of traveler. Travelers of all nationalities regardless of culture or religious backgrounds can now enjoy a part of Thailand from the adventures to the sightseeing and even the cuisine!