Thailand’s Kantharalak district to reopen Preah Vihear temple after 16 yearsLegacy

The district of Kantharalak in Si Sa Ket, Thailand, is buzzing with anticipation as it prepares to reopen access to the Preah Vihear temple after 16 years. The decision to establish a temporary checkpoint for entry into the Cambodian temple followed Interior Minister Anutin Charnvirakul’s recent visit to the province. The move has sparked excitement among the locals, who view it as a significant step towards boosting tourism and trade between Thailand and Cambodia.

Anupong Suksomnit, Governor of Si Sa Ket, confirmed that the checkpoint would provide passage for tourists and locals from both countries. This move comes after a 16-year closure due to a territorial dispute between the two countries in 2008, which revolved around the area surrounding the ancient site.

To display their readiness for this development, local authorities arranged a media tour across different sectors in Si Sa Ket. The enthusiasm was palpable as everyone is eager to get things moving.

Authorities in Si Sa Ket have rallied a task force to gear up for the border’s reopening, said Jit Ardsanjorn, the chief of the Khao Phra Viharn National Park. All sectors are ready and simply waiting for the government’s go-ahead.

She further revealed that the region’s tourist attractions are prepared to receive visitors. New hotels and resorts have sprung up in Kantharalak to host incoming tourists, while local shops and facilities have undergone renovation.

Jit is optimistic that the checkpoint’s opening will significantly increase tourism numbers. She predicted a surge from the current 170,000 tourists per year to approximately 700,000, mirroring past figures, reported Bangkok Post.

The push for the checkpoint’s opening has been a focal point for the Interior Ministry under Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin’s government, aiming to stimulate the tourism sector. This move was further solidified by a meeting between Prime Minister Srettha and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Manet on February 7 to discuss the matter.

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Author: Mitch Connor