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Saturday 15 April 2023

Why tourists are avoiding Chiang Mai

Tourists are avoiding visiting Chiang Mai, Thailand's third-largest city, because of high air pollution levels.

Poor air quality has been affecting the city for several weeks after local farmers undertook a series of burnoffs in the region.

Thailand’s health ministry this week advised people not to partake in outdoor activities and to wear masks to avoid breathing in the polluted air.

The Thai Hotel Association Northern Chapter told local media that hotel bookings had plunged to just 45% occupancy.

The city welcomed over 10 million visitors annually before the pandemic.

In recent weeks Chiang Mai air pollution levels reached 289 on IQAir’s air quality index, which is reported to be one of the worst in the world.

Authorities blamed a combination of forest fires and crop burning.

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