The Andaman Sea (historically also known as the Burma Sea) is a marginal sea of the eastern Indian Ocean separated from the Bay of Bengal (to its west) by the Andaman Islands of India and Myanmar and the Nicobar Islands of India and touching Myanmar, Thailand, and the Malay Peninsula. Its southernmost end is defined by Breueh Island, an island just north of Sumatra.
Traditionally, the sea has been used for fishery and transportation of goods between the coastal countries and its coral reefs and islands are popular tourist destinations. The fishery and tourist infrastructure was severely damaged by the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami.
|Basin countries||India, Myanmar, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia|
|Max. length||1,200 km (746 mi)|
|Max. width||645 km (401 mi)|
|Surface area||600,000 km2 (231,700 sq mi)|
|Average depth||1,096 m (3,596 ft)|
|Max. depth||4,198 m (13,773 ft)|
|Water volume||660,000 km3 (158,000 cu mi)|
The Andaman Sea, which extends over 92E to 100E and 4N to 20N, occupies a very significant position in the Indian Ocean, yet remained unexplored for long period of time. To the south of Myanmar, west of Thailand, and north of Indonesia, this sea is separated from Bay of Bengal by the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and an associated chain of sea mounts along the Indo-Burmese plate boundary. The Strait of Malacca (between Malay Peninsula and Sumatra) forms the southern exit way of the basin, which is 3 km wide and 37 m deep.
On the Southwest. A line running from Oedjong Raja (Sumatra to Poeloe Bras (Breuëh) and on through the Western Islands of the Nicobar Group to Sandy Point in Little Andaman Island, in such a way that all the narrow waters appertain to the Burma Sea.) in
On the Northwest. The Eastern limit of the Bay of Bengal [A line running from Cape Negrais (16°03'N) in Burma [Myanmar] through the larger islands of the Andaman group, in such a way that all the narrow waters between the islands lie to the Eastward of the line and are excluded from the Bay of Bengal, as far as a point in Little Andaman Island in latitude 10°48'N, longitude 92°24'E].
On the Southeast. A line joining Lem Voalan (7°47'N) in Siam [Thailand], and Pedropunt (5°40'N) in Sumatra.
The northern and eastern side of the basin is shallow, as the continental shelf off the coast of Myanmar and Thailand extends over 200 km (marked by 300 m isobath). About 45 percent of the basin area is shallower (less than 500 m depth), which is the direct consequence of the presence of the wider shelf. The continental slope which follows the eastern shelf is quite steep between 9N and 14N. Here, the perspective view of the submarine topography sectioned along 95E exposes the abrupt rise in depth of sea by about 3,000 m within a short horizontal distance of a degree. Isobaths corresponding to 900 m and 2000 m are also shown in the figure to emphasize the steepness of the slope. Further, it may be noted that the deep ocean is also not free from sea mounts; hence only around 15 percent of the total area is deeper than 2,500 m.
The northern and eastern parts are shallower than 180 meters (590 feet) due to the silt deposited by the Irrawaddy River. This major river flows into the sea from the north through Myanmar. The western and central areas are 900–3,000 meters (3,000–9,800 ft) deep. Less than five percent of the sea is deeper than 3,000 meters (9,800 feet), and in a system of submarine valleys east of the Andaman-Nicobar Ridge, the depth exceeds 4,000 meters (13,000 feet). The sea floor is covered with pebbles, gravel, and sand.
The western boundary of Andaman Sea is marked by volcanic islands and sea mounts, with straits or passages of variable depths that control the entry and exit of water to Bay of Bengal. There occurs a drastic change in depth of water over a small distance of 200 km, as one moves from Bay of Bengal (around 3,500 m deep) to the vicinity of islands (up to 1,000 m depth) and further into the Andaman Sea. The exchange of water between the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal occurs through the straits formed between the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Out of these, the most important straits (in terms of width and depth) are: Preparis Channel (PC), Ten Degree Channel (TDC), and Great Channel (GC). PC is the widest but shallowest (250 m) of the three and separates south Myanmar from north Andaman. TDC is 600 m deep and lies between Little Andaman and Car Nicobar. GC is 1,500 m deep and separates Great Nicobar from Banda Aceh.
Running in a rough north–south line on the seabed of the Andaman Sea is the boundary between two tectonic plates, the Burma Plate and the Sunda Plate. These plates (or microplates) are believed to have formerly been part of the larger Eurasian Plate, but were formed when transform fault activity intensified as the Indian Plate began its substantive collision with the Eurasian continent. As a result, a back-arc basin center was created, which began to form the marginal basin which would become the Andaman Sea, the current stages of which commenced approximately 3–4 million years ago (Ma).
The boundary between two major tectonic plates results in high seismic activity in the region (see List of earthquakes in Indonesia). Numerous earthquakes have been recorded, and at least six, in 1797, 1833, 1861, 2004, 2005, and 2007, had the magnitude of 8.4 or higher. On 26 December 2004, a large portion of the boundary between the Burma plate and the Indo-Australian plate slipped, causing the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. This megathrust earthquake had a magnitude of 9.3. Between 1,300 and 1,600 kilometers of the boundary underwent thrust faulting and shifted by about 20 meters, with the sea floor being uplifted several meters. This rise in the sea floor generated a massive tsunami with an estimated height of 28 meters (92 feet) that killed approximately 280,000 people along the coast of the Indian Ocean. The initial quake was followed by a series of aftershocks along the arc of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The entire event severely damaged the fishing infrastructure.:40–42
Within the sea, to the east of the main Great Andaman island group, lies Barren Island, the only presently active volcano associated with the Indian subcontinent. This island-volcano is 3 km (2 mi) in diameter and rises 354 meters above sea level. Its recent activity resumed in 1991 after a quiet period of almost 200 years. It is caused by the ongoing subduction of the India plate beneath the Andaman island arc, which forces magma to rise in this location of the Burma plate. The last eruption started on 13 May 2008 and still continues. The volcanic island of Narcondam, which lies further north, was also formed by this process. No records exist of its activity.
The climate of Andaman Sea is determined by the monsoons of southeast Asia. The wind system over the regime reverses every year. The region experiences north-easterlies with an average windspeed of 5 m/s in the months of November to February. During these months, the western part of the domain experiences maximum wind intensity. It weakens by March–April and reverses to strong south-westerlies from May to September, with mean wind speeds touching 8 m/s in June, July and August, distributed nearly uniformly over the entire basin. The wind plummets by October and switches back to north-easterlies from November.
Air temperature is stable over the year at 26 °C in February and 27 °C in August. Precipitation is as high as 3,000 mm/year and mostly occurs in summer. Sea currents are south-easterly and easterly in winter and south-westerly and westerly in summer. The average surface water temperature is 26–28 °C in February and 29 °C in May. The water temperature is constant at 4.8 °C at the depths of 1,600 m and below. Salinity is 31.5–32.5‰ (parts per thousand) in summer and 30.0–33.0‰ in winter in the southern part. In the northern part, it decreases to 20–25‰ due to the inflow of fresh water from the Irrawaddy River. Tides are semidiurnal (i.e., rising twice a day) with an amplitude of up to 7.2 meters.
The effect of wind stress on ocean surface is explained with the help of wind stress curl. The net divergence of water in the ocean mixed layer results in Ekman Pumping. The comparison between the two seasons elicits a very strong negative pumping velocity of more than 5 m per day along the north coast of Indonesia from May to September (shown here, June). This signifies a probable tendency of coastal downwelling in summer. It is also observed that the region develops a weak but positive pumping velocity (less than 3 m per day) at the mouth of GC in winter (here, December).
Generally, currents are found to be stronger in the south than any other part of the basin. An intense surface outflux through GC, of the order of 40 cm/s, occurs during summers and winters. While this flow is directed westwards in winter, it is southwards along the west coast of Indonesia in summer. On the other hand, the TDC has strong surface influx in summer, which weakens by October. This is followed by a sturdy outflux in winter, which wanes by the month of April. Although the surface flow through PC is generally inward during summer monsoon, the preceding and succeeding months experience outflow (strong outflow in October, but weak outflow in April). During April and October, when the effects of local winds are minimal, Andaman Sea experiences the intensification of meridional surface currents in the poleward direction along the continental slope on the eastern side of the basin. This is characteristic of the propagation of Kelvin Waves.
It is observed that the water level rises in the basin between April and November with the maximum rate of piling up of water during April and October (marked by steep slope of the curve). The rise in sea surface height (SSH) is attributed to the following: rainfall, fresh water influx from rivers, and inflow of water through the three major straits. Except the last factor, the contributions from rainfall and rivers are quantifiable and are hence expressed in volumes of water for comparison. From this, the expected influx through straits (= SSH anomaly – Rainfall – River Influx) could be deduced. Here, the evaporative losses are not accounted for owing to its diminutive order of magnitude compared to precipitation (Previous studies  show that the annual mean freshwater gain (precipitation minus evaporation) of Andaman Sea is 120 cm per year). It is found that the SSH of the basin is primarily dictated by the transport of water through the straits. The contributions from rainfall and rivers become substantial only during summers. Hence, a net inward flow occurs through the straits between April and November, followed by net outward transport till March.
The basin experiences very high rate of transport of water through straits in April and October. This is a period of equatorial Wyrtki jets, which hit the coast of Sumatra and reflects back as Rossby Waves and coastal Kelvin waves. These Kelvin waves are guided along the eastern boundary of Indian Ocean and a part of this signal shall propagate into Andaman sea. And the northern coast of Sumatra is the first to sense its effect. The 20 degree isotherms which deepens during the same period, is suggestive of the downwelling nature of Kelvin waves. The waves further propagate along the eastern boundary of Andaman sea which is confirmed by the differential deepening of 20 degree isotherms along longitudes 94E and 97E (averaged over latitudes 8 N and 13 N) are studied. The longitudes are chosen such that one represents the western part of the basin (94E) and the other along the steep continental slope on the eastern side of basin (97E). It is observed that both the longitudes experience deepening of the isotherms in April and October, but the effect is more pronounced at 97E (isotherms deepen by 30m in April and 10m in October). This is a concrete signature of downwelling in the basin and is definitely not forced locally as the winds are weaker during this period. This confirms unequivocally that the sudden burst of water into the basin through the straits, intensification of eastern boundary currents and the coincidental deepening of isotherms in April and October are the direct consequence of the propagation of downwelling Kelvin waves in Andaman sea, remotely forced by equatorial Wyrtki jets. The evolution of vorticity in the basin is suggestive of strong shear in the flow during different times of the year and further indicates the presence of low frequency geophysical waves (such as westward propagating Rossby waves) and other transient eddies.
The coastal areas of the Andaman Sea are characterized by mangrove forests and seagrass meadows. Mangroves cover between more than 600 km2 (232 sq mi) of the Thai shores of Malay Peninsula whereas seagrass meadows occupy an area of 79 km2 (31 sq mi).:25–26 Mangroves are largely responsible for the high productivity of the coastal waters – their roots trap soil and sediment and provide shelter from predators and nursery for fish and small aquatic organisms. Their body protects the shore from the wind and waves, and their detritus are a part of the aquatic food chain. A significant part of the Thai mangrove forests in the Andaman Sea was removed during the extensive brackish water shrimp farming in 1980s. Mangroves were also significantly damaged by the 2004 tsunami. They were partly replanted after that, but their area is still gradually decreasing due to human activities.:6–7
Other important sources of nutrients in the Andaman Sea are seagrass and the mud bottoms of lagoons and coastal areas. They also create a habitat or temporal shelter for many burrowing and benthic organisms. Many aquatic species migrate from and to seagrass either daily or at certain stages of their life cycle. The human activities which damage seagrass beds include waste water discharge from coastal industry, shrimp farms and other forms of coastal development, as well as trawling and the use of push nets and dragnets. The 2004 tsunami affected 3.5% of seagrass areas along the Andaman Sea via siltation and sand sedimentation and 1.5% suffered total habitat loss.:7
The sea waters along the Malay Peninsula favor molluscan growth, and there are about 280 edible fish species belonging to 75 families. Of those, 232 species (69 families) are found in mangroves and 149 species (51 families) reside in seagrass; so 101 species are common to both habitats.:26 The sea also hosts many vulnerable fauna species, including dugong (Dugong dugon), several dolphin species, such as Irrawaddy Dolphin (Orcaella brevirostris) and four species of sea turtles: critically endangered leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) and hawksbill turtle (Eletmochelys imbricata) and threatened green turtle (Chelonia mydas) and Olive Ridley turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea). There are only about 150 dugongs in the Andaman Sea, scattered between Ranong and Satun Provinces. These species are sensitive to the degradation of seagrass meadows.:8
The sea has long been used for fishing and transportation of goods between the coastal countries. Thailand alone harvested about 943,000 tonnes of fish in 2005 and about 710,000 tonnes in 2000. Of those 710,000 tonnes, 490,000 are accounted for by trawling (1,017 vessels), 184,000 by purse seine (415 vessels), and about 30,000 by gillnets. Of Thailand's total marine catch, 41 percent is caught in the Gulf of Thailand and 19 percent in the Andaman Sea. Forty percent is caught in waters outside Thailand's EEZ.
Production numbers are significantly smaller for Malaysia and are comparable, or higher, for Myanmar. Competition for fish resulted in numerous conflicts between Myanmar and Thailand. In 1998 and 1999, they resulted in fatalities on both sides and nearly escalated into a military conflict. In both cases, the Thai navy intervened when Burmese vessels tried to intercept Thai fishing boats in the contested sea areas, and Thai fighter aircraft were thought to be deployed by the National Security Council. Thai fishing boats were also frequently confronted by the Malaysian navy to the extent that the Thai government had to caution its own fishers against fishing without license in foreign waters.
The 2004 marine production in Thailand was composed of: pelagic fish 33 percent, demersal fish 18 percent, cephalopod 7.5 percent, crustaceans 4.5 percent, trash fish 30 percent and others 7 percent.:12 Trash fish refers to non-edible species, edible species of low commercial value and juveniles, which are released to the sea.:16 Pelagic fishes were distributed between anchovies (Stolephorus spp., 19 percent), Indo-Pacific mackerel (Rastrelliger brachysoma, 18 percent), sardinellas (Sardinellars spp., 14 percent), scad (11 percent), longtail tuna (Thunnus tonggol, 9 percent), eastern little tuna (Euthynnus affinis, 6 percent), trevallies (6 percent), bigeye scad (5 percent), Indian mackerel (Rastrelliger kanagurta, 4 percent), king mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla, 3 percent), torpedo scad (Megalaspis cordyla , 2 percent), wolf herrings (1 percent), and others (2 percent).:13 Demersal fish production was dominated by purple-spotted bigeye (Priacanthus tayenus), threadfin bream (Nemipterus hexodon), brushtooth lizardfish (Saurida undosquamis), slender lizardfish (Saurida elongata) and Jinga shrimp (Metapenaeus affinis). Most species are overfished since the 1970s–1990s, except for Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus commersoni), carangidae and torpedo scad (Meggalaspis spp.). The overall overfishing rate was 333 percent for pelagic and 245 percent for demersal species in 1991.:14 Cephalopods are divided into squid, cuttlefish and molluscs, where squid and cuttlefish in Thai waters consists of 10 families, 17 genera and over 30 species. The main mollusk species captured in the Andaman Sea are scallop, blood cockle (Anadara granosa) and short-necked clam. Their collection requires bottom dredge gears, which damage the sea floor and the gears themselves and are becoming unpopular. So, the mollusk production has decreased from 27,374 tonnes in 1999 to 318 tonnes in 2004. While crustaceans composed only 4.5 percent of the total marine products in 2004 by volume, they accounted for 21 percent of the total value. They were dominated by banana prawn, tiger prawn, king prawn, school prawn, bay lobster (Thenus orientalis), mantis shrimp, swimming crabs and mud crabs. The total catch in 2004 was 51,607 tonnes for squid and cuttlefish and 36,071 tonnes for crustaceans.:18–19
The sea's mineral resources include tin deposits off the coasts of Malaysia and Thailand. Major ports are Port Blair in India; Dawei, Mawlamyine and Yangon in Myanmar; Ranong port in Thailand; George Town and Penang in Malaysia; and Belawan in Indonesia.
The Andaman Sea, particularly the western coast of the Malay Peninsula, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands of India and Myanmar are rich in coral reefs and offshore islands with spectacular topography. Despite having been damaged by the 2004 Sumatra earthquake and tsunami, they remain popular tourist destinations. The nearby coast also has numerous marine national parks – 16 only in Thailand, and four of them are candidates for inclusion into UNESCO World Heritage Sites.:7–8
The Andaman and Nicobar Islands, one of the seven union territories of India comprising 572 islands of which 37 are inhabited, are a group of islands at the juncture of the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea.The territory is about 150 km (93 mi) north of Aceh in Indonesia and separated from Thailand and Myanmar by the Andaman Sea. It comprises two island groups, the Andaman Islands (partly) and the Nicobar Islands, separated by the 150 km wide Ten Degree Channel (on the 10°N parallel), with the Andamans to the north of this latitude, and the Nicobars to the south (or by 179 km). The Andaman Sea lies to the east and the Bay of Bengal to the west.
The territory's capital is the city of Port Blair. The total land area of these islands is approximately 8,249 km2 (3,185 sq mi). The islands host the Andaman and Nicobar Command, the only tri-service geographical command of the Indian Armed Forces. The territory is dived into three districts: Nicobar District with Car Nicobar as capital, South Andaman district with Port Blair as capital and North and Middle Andaman district with Mayabunder as capital.
The Andaman Islands are home to the Sentinelese people, an uncontacted people. The Sentinelese are the only people currently known to not have reached further than a Paleolithic level of technology.In December 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was on a two-day visit to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, renamed three of the islands as a tribute to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose. The Ross Island was renamed as Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Dweep; the Neil Island as Shaheed Dweep; and the Havelock Island as Swaraj Dweep. The PM made this announcement during a speech at the Netaji Stadium, marking the 75th anniversary of the hoisting of the Indian flag by Bose there.Broadnose catshark
The broadnose catshark (Apristurus investigatoris) is a catshark of the family Scyliorhinidae, the holotype and only specimen being found in deep water in the Andaman Sea in the Indian Ocean between 16 and 10°N. Its length is around 26 cm, although this measurement was taken from an immature specimen. The reproduction of this catshark is oviparous. The threats are not exactly known but it may be deepwater fisheries.Burma Plate
The Burma Plate is a minor tectonic plate or microplate located in Southeast Asia, sometimes considered a part of the larger Eurasian Plate. The Andaman Islands, Nicobar Islands, and northwestern Sumatra are located on the plate. This island arc separates the Andaman Sea from the main Indian Ocean to the west.
To its east lies the Sunda Plate, from which it is separated along a transform boundary, running in a rough north-south line through the Andaman Sea. This boundary between the Burma and Sunda plates is a marginal seafloor spreading centre, which has led to the opening up of the Andaman Sea (from a southerly direction) by "pushing out" the Andaman-Nicobar-Sumatra island arc from mainland Asia, a process which began in earnest approximately 4 million years ago.
To the west is the much larger India Plate, which is subducting beneath the western facet of the Burma Plate. This extensive subduction zone has formed the Sunda Trench.Geography of Myanmar
Myanmar (also known as Burma) is the northwestern-most country of mainland Southeast Asia. It lies along the Indian and Eurasian Plates, to the southeast of the Himalayas. To its west is the Bay of Bengal and to its south is the Andaman Sea. It is strategically located near major Indian Ocean shipping lanes. The neighboring countries are China, India, Bangladesh, Thailand and Laos.Kra Isthmus
The Kra Isthmus (Thai: คอคอดกระ, pronounced [kʰɔ̄ː kʰɔ̂ːt kràʔ]; Malay: Segenting Kra/Segenting Kera) is the narrowest part of the Malay Peninsula, in southern Thailand.The western part of the isthmus belongs to Ranong Province and the eastern part to Chumphon Province, both in Thailand. The isthmus is bordered to the west by the Andaman Sea and to the east by the Gulf of Thailand.The Kra Isthmus marks the boundary between two sections of the central cordillera, the mountain chain which runs from Tibet through the Malay peninsula. The southern part is called the Phuket chain, which is a continuation of the greater Tenasserim range, extending further northwards for over 400 km (250 mi) beyond the Three Pagodas Pass.On 8 December 1941 local time, the Imperial Japanese Army landed near Songkhla, Thailand and Kota Bharu, Malaya, thus beginning the Pacific War, and launching both the invasion of Thailand and the Malayan campaign, the latter of which culminated in the capture of Singapore.The Thai Canal is a proposal to join the Gulf of Thailand with the Andaman Sea. It was originally envisioned as crossing the isthmus.Krabi River
The Krabi River (Thai: แม่น้ำกระบี่, RTGS: Maenam Krabi, pronounced [mɛ̂ː.náːm krā.bìː]) is a river in Southern Thailand. The Krabi river is 5 kilometres long, as it is the main channel within a larger estuary to the Andaman Sea. The other two main channels are the Yuan River to the south and Chi Lat to the west. The 31 km upper stretch of the river are named Khlong Krabi Yai, which originates at the Phanom mountain.
The estuary of the Krabi river is listed as Ramsar wetland number 1100 since July 5 2001. The protected area of 213 km² covers more than 100 km² of mangrove forests and 12 km² of up to 2 km wide tidal mudflats. The area is popular with birdwatchers coming to spot some of the most diverse and rare species in the world, the masked finfoot and the brown-winged kingfisher to name just a few.
The town - Krabi has a reputation for its tourism. It is situated along the seaboard of the Andaman Sea. This town gave the Krabi river its name.Kraburi River
The Kraburi River (Thai: แม่น้ำกระบุรี, RTGS: Maenam Kra Buri, pronounced [mɛ̂ːnáːm kràʔ buriː]; Burmese: မြစ်ကြီးနား, BGN/PCGN: myitkyina, Kyan River), also Kra (Thai: กระ) or Pak Chan River (Thai: แม่น้ำปากจั่น) is the boundary river between Thailand and Myanmar at the Kra Isthmus of the Malay Peninsula. The river has its source in the Tenasserim Hills and flows into the Andaman Sea near the Thai town of Ranong and Kawthaung (Victoria Point), Myanmar.
Most notable about the river is its long and up to 6-kilometre (3.7 mi) wide tidal estuary, which contains the largest preserved mangrove forests of Thailand. It is therefore a protected area. The Lam Nam Kraburi National Park covers most of the Thai side of the estuary, while the Ranong Biosphere Reserve and the Laemson Ramsar Site include further areas to the south.Malay Peninsula
The Malay Peninsula (Malay: Semenanjung Tanah Melayu) is a peninsula in Southeast Asia. The land mass runs approximately north-south and, at its terminus, is the southernmost point of the Asian mainland. The area contains Peninsular Malaysia, Southern Thailand, and the southernmost tip of Myanmar (Kawthaung) as well as the city state Singapore, indigenous to or historically inhabited by the Malays, an Austronesian people.
The Titiwangsa Mountains are part of the Tenasserim Hills system, and form the backbone of the Peninsula. They form the southernmost section of the central cordillera which runs from Tibet through the Kra Isthmus (the Peninsula's narrowest point) into the Malay Peninsula. The Strait of Malacca separates the Malay Peninsula from the Indonesian island of Sumatra while the south coast is separated from the island of Singapore by the Straits of Johor.Mawtinzun Pagoda
Mawtinzun Pagoda (Burmese: မော်တင်စွန်းဘုရား), officially known as the Mahāmakuṭaraṃsi Hsandawshin Myat Mawtin Pagoda (Burmese: မဟာမကုဋရံသီဆံတော်ရှင် မြတ်မော်တင်စေတီတော်), is a Buddhist pagoda in Ngapudaw Township, Ayeyarwady Region, Myanmar (Burma). The pagoda is located along the Cape of Mawtin on the Andaman Sea. The pagoda is submerged underwater throughout the year, except during the pagoda festival season. Mawtinzun Pagoda Festival is held annually during the traditional Burmese month of Tabaung. In 2015, over 5,000 tourists attended the festival.Mergui Archipelago
The Mergui Archipelago (also Myeik Archipelago or Myeik Kyunzu; Burmese: မြိတ်ကျွန်းစု) is located in far southern Myanmar (Burma) and is part of the Tanintharyi Region. It consists of more than 800 islands, varying in size from very small to hundreds of square kilometres, all lying in the Andaman Sea off the western shore of the Malay Peninsula near its landward (northern) end where it joins the rest of Indochina. Occasionally the islands are referred to as the Pashu Islands because the Malay inhabitants are locally called Pashu.Mon State
Mon State (Burmese: မွန်ပြည်နယ်, pronounced [mʊ̀ɴ pjìnɛ̀]; Mon: တွဵုရးဍုၚ်မန်၊ ရးမညဒေသ) is an administrative division of Myanmar. It lies between Kayin State to the east, the Andaman Sea to the west, Bago Region to the north and Tanintharyi Region to the south, also having a short border with Thailand's Kanchanaburi Province at its south-eastern tip. The land area is 12,155 km2. The Dawna Range, running along the eastern side of the state in a NNW–SSE direction, forms a natural border with Kayin State. Mon State includes some small islands, such as Kalegauk, Wa Kyun and Kyungyi Island, along its 566 km of coastline. The state's capital is Mawlamyine.Phang Nga Province
Phang Nga (Thai: พังงา, RTGS: phangnga, pronounced [pʰāŋ.ŋāː]) is one of the southern provinces (changwat) of Thailand, on the shore of the Andaman Sea to the west and Phang Nga Bay to the south. Neighboring provinces are (from north, clockwise) Ranong, Surat Thani, and Krabi. To the south is the Phuket Province, connected by the Sarasin Bridge.Phuket City
Phuket City ( poo-KET; Thai: ภูเก็ต, pronounced [pʰūː.kèt]) is a city in the south-east of Phuket island, Thailand. It is the capital of Phuket Province. As of 2007 the city had a population of 75,573. It covers the subdistricts (tambon) Talat Yai (Thai: ตลาดใหญ่) and Talat Nuea (Thai: ตลาดเหนือ) of Mueang Phuket district.
Phuket is 862 km (535.6 mi) south of Bangkok.Ranong Province
Ranong (Thai: ระนอง, pronounced [ra.nɔːŋ] or [rá.nɔːŋ]) is one of Thailand's southern provinces (changwat), on the west coast along the Andaman Sea. It has the fewest inhabitants of all Thai provinces. Neighboring Ranong are (clockwise) Chumphon, Surat Thani, and Phang Nga. To the west, it borders Kawthaung, Tanintharyi, Myanmar.River systems of Thailand
Thailand has 25 river basins with 254 sub-basins. Rainwater is one of the most important sources of water. Thailand's water resoukle per capita is less than that of other countries in the region.The two principal river systems of Thailand are the Chao Phraya and the Mekong. Together, these rivers support the irrigation for Thailand's agricultural economy.
In addition to these two large systems, there are a number of other river systems and individual rivers which drain the lands within Thailand's borders into the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea. One-third of the nation's rivers flow into the Mekong. The Mekong is the only river system in Thailand which drains into the South China Sea.Similan Islands
The Similan Islands (Thai: หมู่เกาะสิมิลัน, Thai pronunciation: [mùː kɔ̀ʔ si.mi.lan], Malay: Pulau Sembilan) is a group of islands in the Andaman Sea off the coast of, and part of, Phang Nga Province, southern Thailand. It is a national park, Mu Ko Similan, which was established in 1982 after a one-year assessment by the forestry department.Strait of Malacca
The Strait of Malacca (Malay: Selat Melaka, Indonesian: Selat Malaka, Thai: ช่องแคบมะละกา, Tamil: மலாக்கா நீரிணை, Chinese: 马六甲海峡) or Straits of Malacca is a narrow, 550 mi (890 km) stretch of water between the Malay Peninsula (Peninsular Malaysia) and the Indonesian island of Sumatra. As the main shipping channel between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean, it is one of the most important shipping lanes in the world. It is named after the Malacca Sultanate that ruled over the archipelago between 1400 and 1511.Surin Islands
The Surin Islands (Thai: หมู่เกาะสุรินทร์, Thai pronunciation: [mùː kɔ̀ʔ sùrin]) is an archipelago of five islands in the Andaman Sea, 60 km from the Thai mainland. Administratively, the islands are part of Tambon Ko Phra Thong, Khura Buri District, in Phang Nga Province, Thailand.Mu Ko Surin National Park (อุทยานแห่งชาติหมู่เกาะสุรินทร์) encompasses the islands and their surrounding waters. The park covers an area of approximately 141.25 km2. It contains the Surin Islands and the surrounding waters. Of the protected area, 108 km2 or 80 percent is ocean. The park was gazetted as the 29th national park of Thailand on 9 July 1981. The park is closed during rainy season, 1 May-31 October, every year.Tanintharyi Region
Tanintharyi Region (Burmese: တနင်္သာရီတိုင်းဒေသကြီး, pronounced [tənɪ́ɴθàjì táɪɴ dèθa̰ dʑí]; Mon: ဏၚ်ကသဳ or တနၚ်သြဳ; Malay: Tanah Sari; formerly Tenasserim Division and subsequently Tanintharyi Division, Thai: ตะนาวศรี, RTGS: Tanao Si, pronounced [tənaːw sǐː]; formerly known as Tanao Si) is an administrative region of Myanmar, covering the long narrow southern part of the country on the Kra Isthmus. It borders the Andaman Sea to the west and the Tenasserim Hills, beyond which lie Thailand, to the east. To the north is the Mon State. There are many islands off the coast, the large Mergui Archipelago in the southern and central coastal areas and the smaller Moscos Islands off the northern shores. The capital of the division is Dawei (Tavoy). Other important cities include Myeik (Mergui) and Kawthaung. The division covers an area of 43,344.9 km², and had a population of 1,406,434 at the 2014 Census.