In several countries in South East Asia tourists can now learn about national customs and traditions without really trying.
In several countries in South East Asia tourists can now learn about national customs and traditions without really trying. In Djakarta, Manila, Singapore and Bangkok, tourist villages are now under construction or are already open to the public.
The specially built villages aim to give a concentrated glimpse of a country's way of life to those tourists who do not have the time or money to search out the real thing.
In Thailand a new tourist village has opened 22 miles (30 kms) west of Bangkok at the Rose Garden, a country resort set in 50 acres (80 hectares) of tropical gardens.
Every afternoon visitors can see a welcoming procession followed by pretty maidens in traditional northern costumes performing the Nail Dance. Next comes a demonstration of elephants at work, classical Thai dances, Thai boxing, cock-fighting, and Thai fencing and fighting with clubs and sticks.
Inside the village people demonstrate the primitive way of manually threshing, husking and polishing rice; also earthen pots being made by hand and silk weavers at work. And, of course, there are shops selling woodcarvings and jewellery and other traditional Thai souvenirs.
SYNOPSIS: A specially built Thai tourist village has recently opened not far from Bangkok. It is at a country resort known as the Rose Garden, set in fifty acres of tropical gardens. Many tourist villages have been built in South East Asia.
The aim is to give, in one place a very concentrated glimpse of the traditional Thai way of life. Many tourists do not have the time or the money to travel all over Thailand in search of native customs and costumes. Now, those interested in Thai life can see many facets of it in one afternoon at the village. Pretty Thai girls in traditional northern dress perform the slow rhythmic nail dance for tourists from all over the world.
Many different types of dances, classical as well as modern, are demonstrated - and of course the dancers are continually photographed.
After the graceful dancing, tourists see a session of Thai sport. One of the highlights is stick fighting - always keenly contested.
In Thai boxing, feet as well as fits are used - opponents try to pull each other down.
Cocks fight fierce battles every afternoon here - but often the contest ends in a draw.
The visitors can also take part in a traditional Thai wedding ceremony - and the dance which follows. There is another mini Thai village in Thailand. And other tourist villages have already opened or are being built, in Djakarta, Manila, and Singapore.
Villagers husk and polish rice the old way.
But the biggest attraction of all is the elephants. The well trained elephants show there skill at ??? logs to delight the tourists.