A country renowned for arousing every sense with vibrant colors, lively ambience, sweet aromas, exotic spices, and friendly welcome, Thailand is also one of the world’s most hospitable LGBT destinations. Perhaps this is because predominantly Buddhist countries like Thailand recognize an extra sense. In Western culture, extrasensory perception or ESP is sometimes considered the sixth sense, but its association with mystic practices like clairvoyance and telepathy means it remains on the periphery. In Buddhism, the notion of “thought” is fully integrated with “see,” “hear,” “smell,” “taste,” and “touch.” Could it be the sense of thoughtfulness that makes Thailand so hospitable?
A reason why gay visitors are welcomed with warm smiles is because Thais don’t make the same distinctions between gay and straight as we do. You may offend if you embrace your lover on the street, but only because all public displays of unbridled affection are frowned upon regardless of sexual preference.
Similarly, Thai culture doesn’t place the same premium on youth. Altogether, this means that older Western men may be considered more attractive in Thailand than they are back home, and certainly there are handsome Thai guys who are keen to meet Westerners, but that’s only half the story.