Thailand gears up for one million visitors during Lunar New Year
By Amy Sawitta Lefevre
BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thailand expects a million visitors during the upcoming Lunar New Year, 19 percent more than last year, the country's tourism authority said on Monday.
Nearly half were expected to come from neighboring countries - China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and Malaysia, the Tourism Authority of Thailand said.
The Lunar New Year period, which falls from Feb.6-14 this year, will generate around 29 billion baht ($814 million) in revenue, said the tourism authority, up 32 percent from the previous year.
Tropical Thailand is a top destination for Chinese tourists, and there was little sign of them being scared off by the bombing at a shrine in Bangkok in August that killed 20 people, more than half of them foreign tourists.
Over 8 million Chinese traveled to Thailand in 2015, a record, and the country expects more this year.
The tourism ministry is preparing Chinese language brochures, a spokesman said.
Vendors in Bangkok's Chinatown, where the streets are festooned with red lanterns, are preparing for the peak period.
Celebrations will include shows by music and dance troupes from around China. The city's Chinese restaurants are also preparing menus offering traditional seasonal dishes like dim sum and Ye Sang, a salad eaten by a family. Continued...