When you’re visiting a foreign country, it’s essential to stay respectful of their culture and traditions. Rules tend to differ among different countries. For example, slurping might be disrespectful for some cultures, but in Japan, it’s a way to tell the host that you enjoyed their meal.
It’s important to be mindful of what you should and shouldn’t do before visiting a country. You don’t want to accidentally disrespect a whole culture because you were clueless. Read up on their written and unspoken rules and follow them respectfully. After all, you don’t want to be that annoying tourist.
Wearing Improper Clothes at a Temple
A temple is a sacred place, and you shouldn’t be wearing the wrong clothes when visiting a temple. Don’t wear short dresses, sleeveless shirts, or anything revealing. And if you plan to wear shorts, make sure the hem is at knee level. Make sure to remove your hat as well when you enter the temple. And just like most Asian countries, you should leave your shoes outside.
If you have your heart set on riding an elephant when you visit Phuket, we have some bad news for you. Although riding elephants might have been a common thing in the past, it is now forbidden. Elephants are respected in Thailand, and riding one is a form of animal cruelty.
But don’t worry, you can still see and even interact with elephants while you’re in Phuket. You can visit elephant sanctuaries or rehabilitation camps and watch them play around in the mud. You can even feed them if you want! Isn’t that much cuter than letting the elephant carry your weight?
Taking Photos of Protected Wildlife
Taking selfies with protected wildlife is considered illegal in Phuket. Remember, these are endangered species, and they can be very sensitive. It’s best to observe them from afar to protect these creatures.
Disrespecting the Royal Family
Thais widely respect the royal family of Thailand. Disrespecting the royal family could mean disrespecting the Thai people. When you hear their national anthem play, make sure to pay respect by standing up if you’re in a movie theatre or stop walking if you’re on the streets. Even if you don’t know what their national anthem sounds like, you can probably get some context clues if you see many Thai people standing up and paying respect.
Taking Buddha Images Out of the Country
Although many shops sell Buddha figures to tourists, taking images of the Buddha out of the country is now banned. The Buddha is a religious figure, and statues and figurines of the Buddha are considered religious items. Since tourists buy them for decorative purposes, the country has stopped allowing these tourists to take any Buddha image outside the country. So, if they find any unregistered statue or image of the Buddha in your luggage, it will be confiscated at the airport.
Respect should be universal. When you’re visiting a foreign country, be mindful of their practices and traditions. Research how you should act in the country you plan to visit and don’t stay clueless.
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