Do u know about Hill Tribes in Thailand ? Have you ever seen Hill Tribes silver beading ring or Hilltribe silver pendants in Thailand ?
Hill tribe is a common name used to refer the ethnic minorities living in the mountainous regions in northern Thailand. Each hill tribe has its own customs, language, dress and beliefs. Most migrated to Thailand from Tibet, Burma, China and Laos nearly 200 years ago.
It is estimated that there are 20 different hill tribes living in northern Thailand with a population of 550,000 approximately. Out of these 20, six tribes are the dominant and include Yao, Karen, Akha, Lahu, Hmong and Lisu.
In the past, some of the tribes used to grow opium. However, a project initiated by the king has turned them to cultivation. The hill tribes now cultivate rice, corn, fruits like apples and strawberries and cash crops like kidney beans, coffee, vegetables and flowers. The hill tribes are also being educated in environment protection and are being encouraged to stop destroying forests through slash and burn cultivation.
Each hill tribe has its own style and design when building houses. However, houses are built in two basic designs. Houses are built either on the ground with beaten earth floor or raised a few feet off the ground on stilts. Houses are usually built from bamboo poles, split bamboo, wooden poles and planks and have thatched roofs made from grass and palm leaves.
The tribal people have contacts with low landers and also conduct trade with them. The younger generation is being exposed to city life when they come to pursue studies or get jobs. Some tribal people can speak good English and one will often find them in tourist spots selling their hand made trinkets, products and souvenirs.