Thailand’s tourism and sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn recently announced that the country has set a target revenue of 40 billion baht (approximately €1 billion) for its sports tourism ventures in 2023.
The sport of Muay Thai has reportedly been selected as part of the country’s soft power, while the ministry for sports and tourism will work towards integrating tourism and sports through a variety of sports events, including during the winter period.
One sports event taking place in winter is the Amazing Thailand World Mountain & Trail Running Championships, which takes place in the city of Chiang Mai later this month (November 2022). The event will target athletes around the world, and is hosted by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT), the latter of which was present at ITB Asia 2022 for the first time.
Gongsak Yodmanee, Governor of the Sports Authority of Thailand reportedly said that the agency intends to push Thailand as the most attractive sports tourism destination in Asia.
According to the Tourism and Sports Minister, four billion baht (approximately €100 million) was raised at the MotoGP Grand Prix that took place in October 2022. The country hopes to raise around 30 to 40 billion more baht through next year, with international events lined up along the calendar.
The country hosts a range of sporting events every year, including golf, motorcycle racing and Muay Thai. In an interview with the Bangkok Post, Kwon Tipayamontri, a co-organiser of the Bangsaen Series marathon races, said running events had led to spending in tourism destinations across the country, with over 2,500 running events taking place every year.