WikiProject Thailand

From OpenStreetMap Wiki
(Redirected from Thailand)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Thailand, Asia

latitude: 13.0, longitude: 101.5
Browse map of Thailand 13°00′00.00″ N, 101°30′00.00″ E
Edit map
External links:
Use this template for your city

Thailand is a Country in Asia at latitude 13°00′00.00″ North, longitude 101°30′00.00″ East.


There are some users in Thailand, add your own username if you map in Thailand by adding the following category to your user page (you can add your town or city at the same time). [[Category:Users in Thailand|name]]

OSM community meeting in Chiang Mai, March 2011
Bangkok OSM community mapping party, April 2012

There is an internet forum (message board) and a Facebook group for people in Thailand where you can talk with others about all things regarding OpenStreetMap (OSM) and in particular about mapping in Thailand. In this forum you can write your posts either in Thai language or in English language. If you have any questions about OpenStreetMap in Thailand, feel free to ask there. Proposals for this page can be added on the WikiProject Thailand Drafts page and discussed in the forum.

A nice tool from geofabrik labs was used to generate an animated gif of Thailand. It shows the progress of OSM in Thailand. A big THANK YOU to the community for making that huge progress. Keep on the good work.


Territory based projects

  • Bangkok - Capital city and largest of Thailand's city by far -- many missing streets around the city
  • Phang Nga - Province in the South West. Some people interested in this area
  • Chiang Mai - Province in the North and the 2nd largest city of Thailand
  • Phuket - Island province to the South of Thailand -- many missing streets around the city

For a list of Nakhon (City), Mueang (Town) and Tambon (Subdistrict) see Wikipedia: List of cities in Thailand

Other projects

  • Remote Surveys - Project for collaborative surveys of cities in Thailand
  • /Protected areas — This subpage is for listing sources for and tracking the mapping progress of national parks and other protected areas.


The user-base in Thailand is growing therefore we need to start coordinating.

As OpenStreetMap is a wiki-like project, every user is basically free to choose whatever tags he likes. Over the time some key/value pairs had become standard in the way to tag things. These are documented in the wiki, a good starting point is the Map Features page.

For Thailand some specialties exist in how to tag things here. This page lists only the things that are handled special in Thailand.

When conventions are final they will appear on this page, if they are still under discussion they will be listed on the Talk page.

Multilingual names

The maps Mapnik and Osmarender at use name=* e.g. the local names for rendering. There are maps available where the language can be chosen:

  • Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam: Billingual, local (e.g. Thai) and English

Background according to Wikipedia:

  • "In linguistics, romanization or latinization, alternately spelt as latinisation or romanisation (see spelling differences), is the representation of a written word or spoken speech with the Roman (Latin) alphabet, or a system for doing so, where the original word or language uses a different writing system (or none). Methods of romanization include transliteration, for representing written text, and transcription, for representing the spoken word." Reference: wikipedia: Romanization.
  • "The Royal Thai General System of Transcription (RTGS) is the official system for rendering Thai language words in the Latin alphabet, published by The Royal Institute of Thailand. It is used in road signs and government publications, and is the closest thing to a standard of transcription for Thai, though its use by even the government is inconsistent." References: wikipedia: Royal Thai General System of Transcription and wikipedia: ISO 11940.

How to get the transcription of names:

  1. Collect it from signs when collecting data. Map users will compare to signs.
  2. Wikipedia, other sources on the internet or for names of administrative organisations Office of the Royal Society: Changwat, Amphoe, Tambon, Khet and Khweng Name. The Department of Local Administration: Local Administrative Organization's English Name
  3. Use the program for Windows Chulalongkorn University: Thai Romanization Program.
  4. Transcribe yourself according to wikipedia: Royal Thai General System of Transcription.

Tagging example:

name=ภูเก็ต. Local language Thai. Note: There's an ongoing discussion in regard to brand names
name:th=ภูเก็ต. Thai.
name:en=Phuket. "Romanization".

The renderer can create maps in one or two languages:

  • Thai only: e.g. ภูเก็ต
  • English only: e.g. Phuket
  • Bilingual: e.g. ภูเก็ต Phuket just by using the name and the name:en value.

People who can read Thai will prefer the names in Thai due to reasons discussed in wikipedia: Royal Thai General System of Transcription (RTGS). Other people will prefer the transcription of names in Roman characters. When using the map and comparing names to signs or when asking Thai people for help a bilingual map is convenient.

In cases where the Thai romanization is different from the English name, the RTGS transcription can be placed in the name:th-Latn=* tag. This might not be necessary, as theoretically it would be possible for the renderer to automatically generate such romanizations. However, the accuracy of such software is still quite limited, especially with proper names.

name:en=Phuket Province
name:th-Latn=Changwat Phuket

Highway classification

The table shows the classification of the highways used in Thailand for OSM and typical tagging examples. It follows the numbering scheme issued by the Thai authorities - with exception for trunk classification.

But over time e.g. a three-digit highway may become in total or in sections the importance and the standard of a two-digit (primary) or even of a one-digit (trunk) highway. In these cases all or larger sections of this highway can be classified higher. The same applies for urban highways. An unclassified highway without number can be classified tertiary.

In some cases a section of a trunk or primary road that crosses an urban area has lost its role as the fastest route due to a newer road around that urban area. In those cases the bypassed section can be classified lower and the newer and faster way around be upgraded to the bypassed section's former classification.

Please note that there is an active discussion about changing the classification scheme on the [forum], and this scheme may change soon.

See also the Thai highway network article on Wikipedia.

Official classification Reference number OSM tagging

Typical examples

Description, comments Photo
Expressway (ทางพิเศษ) Zeichen 330 - Autobahn, StVO 1992.svg


Roads tagged as motorway should be controlled-access highways. They do not provide access to properties, and are not accessible to motorcycles or pedestrians. They are often tolled.

There are two systems of controlled-access highways in Thailand: the motorway and the expressway.

Motorway (ทางหลวงพิเศษ, special highway) Thai Motorway-t7.svg

One or two digits, beginning with 5–9

Thai Motorway-f9.svg

7, 9

name:en=Mittraphap Road
Green-background signs denote routes which are legally designated as motorways but currently lack full access control. They are usually accessible to motorcycles, and may provide access to adjacent properties. They should be tagged as highway=trunk (see below). Hgwy1amphoekokha090515.jpg
National Highway (ทางหลวงแผ่นดิน) Thai Highway-2.svg

One digit, beginning with 1–4

Trunk classification should be applied to roads that look like motorways and are geared towards fast far-distance traffic, but are toll free and with unrestricted access; even bicycles and pedestrians may use them. Characteristics include:
  • Speed limit and average speed of /h or more.
  • Motorcycles may or may not be limited to the left lane.
  • At least 2 lanes in each direction with a ditch or barrier separating traffic in each direction.
  • Designated places for U-turns are typical.
  • Junctions hardly impeding the traffic on the trunk, traffic lights are not common.

If sections of other highways fulfil the above specification, those sections should also be classified as trunk roads.

Thai Highway-22.svg

Two digits, beginning with 1–4

name:en=Suranarai Road

Primary roads are built for long-distance travel, typically beyond province borders. They are mostly 1, 2 or 3 digit roads that do not meet trunk standards.

Examples are

Highway 22: Udon Thani–Nakhon Phanom
Highway 205: Lopburi–Nakhon Ratchasima

Typical features of primaries are:

2 or more lanes, wide enough for two vehicles to pass each other without reducing speed
often extra lanes on the side (shoulder), comfortably wide for bicycles and motorcycles
paved (asphalt or concrete)
SakhonNakhonHw22 20090514b.jpg
Thai Highway-205.svg

Three digits, beginning with 1–4

Thai Highway-3278.svg

Four digits, beginning with 1–4

name:en=Seri Thai Road
Secondary roads are major roads inside a province.

E.g. Highway 3278: Min Buri - Bang Kapi (Bangkok)

Typical features of secondaries are:

2 lanes
often a 4 digit road maintained on national level, white sign.
paved (asphalt or concrete)

Note that new roads often receive a 4-digit reference number, regardless of their importance - they might also be primaries or tertiaries.

ทางหลวง 3306, อำเภอเลาขวัญ, Jan2013.JPG
Rural road (ทางหลวงชนบท, rural highway) Yasothon Rural Rd 4011.jpg

Two-letter province code and four digits

E.g. Highway ยส.4011:, a rural road in the province Yasothon

Tertiary roads

connect two or more villages/hamlets
are often 4 digit roads maintained on province level, blue sign.
most of them are paved, but unpaved roads are possible (adding a surface tag is appropriate)

Note that the provincial code is an integral part of the reference number. If you cannot type Thai characters, use e.g. "xx" to denote the presence of the provincial code rather than omitting it completely.

Roads that have a provincial prefix in their reference number should be tagged with ref=pf.nnnn where pf is the provincial prefix in Thai characters, followed by a dot, followed by the numerical portion of the reference number. There should be no spaces in the ref tag value.

Concession highway (ทางหลวงสัมปทาน) N/A N/A Concession highway is an administrative classification. Classification should follow the road's characteristics.
Local route (ทางหลวงท้องถิ่น, local highway) Local ref milepost for Wiki (IMG 4626).jpgสท.ถ1-0011

(Administrative reference, usually not signposted)

highway=unclassified Typically unclassified roads in Thailand are the roads having no designated number and connect villages to major highways. Unclassified is used for minor public roads typically at the lowest level of the interconnecting grid network. Unclassified roads have lower importance in the road network than tertiary roads, and are not residential streets or agricultural tracks. Unclassified roads are considered usable by motor cars.

The photo shows a milestone located in Sukhothai province illustrating the fact that some local highways are marked in this fashion.


Note regarding highway route numbers

The first digit of national highway and motorway route numbers follows the region of Thailand the route primary links to: 1 and 5 for the North, 2 and 6 for the Northeast, 3 and 7 for the central region, 4 and 8 for the South, and 9 for the Bangkok ring road. (The motorway system currently only consists of routes 7 and 9, so route numbers beginning 5, 6 and 8 don't yet exist.)

Rural road numbers consist of a two-letter province abbreviation followed by four digits. The first digit indicates the level of highway the road connects to, while the remaining three digits are provincial index numbers. Therefore the first digit may be changed following changes to the connecting highway, while the last tree digits generally remain the same. The numbering system for the first digit is: 1 indicates a connection to 1-digit national highways, and likewise for 2, 3 and 4; 5 indicates a connection to other rural roads or local highways, and 6 indicates the road connects to places without forming part of a larger network.

Occasionally one may come across roads bearing reference numbers that include two-letter province abbreviations, but don't otherwise conform to the rural road numbering system or aren't found in the Department of Rural Road's index (see #Official sources below). These are usually outdated reference numbers belonging to the Public Works Department or the Office of Accelerated Rural Development, which were responsible for the roads before they were transferred to Department of Rural Roads in 2002. These outdated numbers may be qualified by the words โยธาธิการ (ยธ.) or เร่งรัดพัฒนาชนบท (รพช.), respectively.


Map Features #Highway
Highway tag usage
Tagging samples/out of town
Tagging samples/urban
Asia/Asian Highway Network

Fuel stations

Use amenity=fuel to tag the location. The name is going to name=*, name:en=*, name:th=* respective operator=*, operator:en=*, operator:th=*. Some, may be the most common fuel stations are:

The fuel types can be tagged as described here Tag:amenity=fuel.


Besides the tags listed in Map Features the following tagging is common in Thailand. Try adding width=* to specify the width of the waterway.

Tag Element Natural waterways Photo
waterway=riverbank area Used for larger rivers (more than 12m wide), to define an area between the opposite riverbanks.
Chao Phraya - Horizons.JPG
waterway=river way Larger river, แม่น้ำ (Mae Nam). Typically wider than 5m. If the waterway is smaller than you should consider using waterway=stream instead.
Khek River in Wang Thong.jpg
waterway=stream way Naturally formed waterway. Typically smaller than 2m, but can be used up to 5m (e.g. if the water is not deep and people can walk through it).
Tag Element Man-made waterways Photo
waterway=canal way If the name of the waterway contains the word "Khlong" (Thai: คลอง) or if it looks like a typical canal or khlong we should tag it as "canal". Add boat=* where appropriate.
waterway=ditch way If the waterway is significant smaller than a typical canal (less than ), chances are good that it is a "ditch".
Klong Isaan.jpg
waterway=drain way If it is made out of concrete (คอนกรีต) or build from other hard materials, it is maybe a "drain". A drain does not nessessarily contain water all the time. In dry seasons it could be dry and only be filled while it is raining! If the width exceeds and the drain does contain water most of the time consider using waterway=canal instead.
Example Drain.jpg

Administrative levels

In Thailand there are 2 systems, the provincial and the local administration. References: wikipedia: Administrative divisions of Thailand and Thailand subforum.

The provincial administration is hierarchical and centrally controlled by Department of Provincial Administration and Ministry of Interior:

Kingdom of Thailand > province > district > subdistrict > village
Ratcha Anachak Thai > changwat > amphoe > tambon > muban
ราชอาณาจักรไทย > จังหวัด > อำเภอ > ตำบล > หมู่บ้าน).

The local administration is administrated locally under the support of Department of Local Administration:

  • county (Provincial Administrative Organization (PAO), องค์การบริหารส่วนจังหวัด (อบจ.)): same boundary as province.
  • municipality (thetsaban, เทศบาล) has 3 classes:
    1. city (thetsaban nakhon, เทศบาลนคร (ทน.))
    2. town (thetsaban mueang, เทศบาลเมือง (ทม.))
    3. subdistrict (thetsaban tambon, เทศบาลตำบล (ทต.)).
A municipality can cover
  • tambon (Subdistrict Administrative Organization (SAO), องค์การบริหารส่วนตำบล (อบต.))
can cover one or more adjoining subdistricts in the same district, also subdistricts partially if area shared with a municipality.
  • community (chumchon, ชุมชน)
is administrated by a municipality and can be part of a subdistrict or cover parts of more than one subdistrict. Sometimes they share the same area as the Muban within the municipality

References: wikipedia: Thesaban and wikipedia: List of cities in Thailand.

There are two special cases:

  • Bangkok Metropolitan
is divided into khet (เขต) which are divided into khwaeng (แขวง).
is both a local administration as well as at province level
  • City of Pattaya
is part of but not administrated by Amphoe Bang Lamung. Equivalent to the city municipality. This is not reflected here and probably can't be tagged in OSM anyhow.
there are more special administrative areas in planning to be similar with Pattaya, i.e. Mae Sot, Ko Samui, Hua Hin Cha-am.

The table shows the values for Key:admin_level and for Key:place. Municipality extends in parallel to subdistrict and may be more or less than one subdistrict. 10 administrative levels are used. The table lists the terms for the administrative units in English, Romanized Thai and Thai.

Country Administrative levels Key:admin_level and Key:place
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
N/A Kingdom of Thailand N/A Province /
N/A District /
Bangkok: Khet
N/A Subdistrict /
Bangkok: Khwaeng
N/A Village place=hamlet
Subdistrict Administrative Organization (SAO) place=village
City Municipality place=city
Town Municipality place=town
Subdistrict Municipality place=town
Romanized Thai
- Ratcha Anachak Thai - Changwat /
- Amphoe /
Krungthep: Khet
- Tambon /
Krungthep: Khwaeng
- Muban place=hamlet
Ongkan Borihan Suan Tambon (O Bo To) place=village
Thetsaban Nakhon place=city
Thetsaban Mueang place=town
Thetsaban Tambon place=town
- ราชอาณาจักรไทย - จังหวัด /
- อำเภอ /
กรุงเทพฯ: เขต
- ตำบล /
กรุงเทพฯ: แขวง
- หมู่บ้าน place=hamlet
องค์การบริหารส่วนตำบล (อบต.) place=village
เทศบาลนคร place=city
เทศบาลเมือง place=town
เทศบาลตำบล place=town


In Thailand addresses general consist of

Term Example Tag Photo
English Romanized Thai Thai Romanized Thai addr=*
housenumber Lekthi Ban เลขที่บ้าน 85/1 addr:housenumber Addr hamlet subdistrict district province.jpg
hamlet Muban (Mu) หมู่บ้าน (หมู่) Mu 2 addr:hamlet
subdistrict Tambon ตำบล Bang Talad addr:subdistrict
district Amphoe อำเภอ Pak Kret addr:district
province Changwat จังหวัด Nonthaburi addr:province

Data sources

In addition to a survey with GPS one may also use some aerial images if available with a suitable license.

Bing aerial imagery is available in many parts. Landsat provides coverage of the whole country and is available with different image modes.

Official sources

Legislation and other official proclamations by the Royal Thai Government are exempt from copyright protection. Maps accompanying documents published in the Royal Thai Government Gazette (available at ) may be useful as sources for manual tracing (e.g. of national parks).

GIS data is available from several government agencies, but are presumed to be protected by copyright and unsuitable for import.

The Department of Highways provides a publicly accessible database of national highways at As above, the data is considered unsuitable for systematic import, but is useful as a source for confirmation of data and quality assurance.

The Department of Rural Roads publishes indices of rural highways at They include route numbers and names (which typically describe the route's start and end points), location, length, and start and end coordinates (although the coordinates appear quite unreliable).

The local highway registry is available at

Quality Control

Bicycling tagging (currently for Chiang Mai only)

There are many cyclists in Chiang Mai, but almost no officially signposted cycleways or -routes exist. There have recently been some efforts from the Chiang Mai cycling community to collect information about common routes used by cyclists. For this, we tried to figure out how to use OSM conventions to mark roads as cycling routes. This could be a proposal for a convention to establish cycling routes in Chiang Mai and maybe other regions in Thailand.

Objective tags

The following tags should always be considered, because they can be easily verified on the ground and are also used by most cycling routing engines:

  • key:highway: the lower the road class, the lesser traffic and lower speeds can be expected, e.g. highway=unclassified or residential would be more suitable for cycling than highway=primary or secondary etc.
  • key:lanes: lanes=1 normally best suited for cycling, because less traffic can be assumed than on roads with >1 lane
  • key:surface: if the road is paved or not makes a big difference for cycling and should therefore be included in cycling related editing


  • key:maxspeed: rarely signposted in Thailand
  • key:bicycle: only refers to the legal (e.g. signposted) access for bicycles on roads. It is therefore not a measure for the suitability for cycling

Subjective tags (no ground truthing possible)

Subjective tags can help to give more in-depth information about the cycling suitability of a road, which cannot be determined by the objective tags alone. They should only be used if the user has a good local knowledge.

  • class:bicycle tags (derived from class:bicycle#Values):
    • class:bicycle=1: Prefer (decent car traffic, but still better than other roads, or road is not in a good condition like dirt road with holes)
    • class:bicycle=2: Very Nice way to cycle
    • class:bicycle=3: This way is so nice, it pays out to make a detour also if this means taking many unsuitable ways to get here. Outstanding for its intended usage class.
    • class:bicycle=-2: Only use to reach your destination, not well suited (e.g. big junctions, but have to be passed to connect to another calmer road).
  • key:scenic: If the scenery of a specific part of the road is remarkably beautiful, this key can help to rank the amenity of a cycling-suitable road.

Proposing routes: key:lcn

In order to propose possible cycling routes (local and regional) for a cycle-route network, the key:lcn or key:rcn tags can be helpful. Furthermore, the cycling roads will also be rendered on the OSM-cyclemap[1], which is also being used on the main "Cycle Map" layer.

  • key:lcn=proposed (for local routes, e.g. inside the city bounds)
  • key:rcn=proposed (for regional routes, e.g. to other districts/provinces)

The key-value would be 'proposed' for now, since these routes are not officially designated. Routes should only be proposed if they have been tested on the ground and/or been agreed on by the local cycling community.

If there are any designated routes (not existing in Chiang Mai yet), of course they should be tagged as lcn=yes / rcn=yes.

Kaart Groundwork & Editing

Kaart conducts ground surveys for improvements to OSM data. A list of editors can be found on the Kaart wiki page.

  • Mapillary imagery from the Thailand drives can be viewed here.
Car GPS tracks driven during Kaart's ground survey in Chiang Mai. Imagery provided by Bing.

Chiang Mai (June, 2019)

Ground Focus
  • Primary focus was on adding street names. We had Thai-speaking team members with the ground crew to help ensure accurate spelling.
  • All GPX Files from this trip can be downloaded here.
Post Processing
  • After the ground survey was conducted, our office team has been reviewing the footage gathered and updating street names by checking the consistency with current data and physical road signs.
  • The team will add turn restrictions, pedestrian crossings, surfaces to roads, lanes, and additional missing geometry.
Suggested Community Edits
  • There are still many names that need to be entered in Thai. We did our best to enter the names available to us in Thai, but where that was not feasible, we used the Latin characters available on street signs under the name:en key.

The ground survey of Chiang Mai was conducted by Kaart Team members spence142, Whimsical Otter, DerekBev, and InnerPace.

Car GPS tracks driven during Kaart's ground survey in the Rayong region. Imagery provided by Bing.

Rayong Region (June, 2019)

Ground Focus
  • Primary focus in Rayong was also on adding street names. We had Thai-speaking team members with the ground crew to help ensure accurate spelling.
  • All GPX Files from this trip can be downloaded here.
Post Processing
  • After the ground survey was conducted, our office team has been reviewing the footage gathered and updating street names by checking the consistency with current data and physical road signs.
  • The team will add turn restrictions, pedestrian crossings, surfaces to roads, lanes, and additional missing geometry.
Suggested Community Edits
  • There are still many names that need to be entered in Thai. We did our best to enter the names available to us in Thai, but where that was not feasible, we used the Latin characters available on street signs under the name:en key.

The ground survey of the Rayong region was conducted by Kaart Team members spence142, Whimsical Otter, DerekBev, and spuddy93.

Car GPS tracks driven during Kaart's ground survey in the Southwest region of Thailand. Imagery provided by Bing.

Southwest Thailand (July, 2019)

Ground Focus
  • As with Chiang Mai and Rayong, our primary focus in Southwest Thailand was on adding street names. We again had Thai-speaking team members with the ground crew to help ensure accurate spelling.
  • All GPX Files from this trip can be downloaded here.
Post Processing
  • After the ground survey was conducted, our office team has been reviewing the footage gathered and updating street names by checking the consistency with current data and physical road signs.
  • The team will add turn restrictions, pedestrian crossings, surfaces to roads, lanes, and additional missing geometry.
Suggested Community Edits
  • There are still many names that need to be entered in Thai. We did our best to enter the names available to us in Thai, but where that was not feasible, we used the Latin characters available on street signs under the name:en key.

The ground survey of Southwest Thailand was conducted by Kaart Team members AnonJason, JAAS, _Poliwrath_, and InnerPace.


Kaart will be conducting two separate ground surveys of the city of Bangkok. The first will take place beginning July 27th and will cover the western half of the city. The second trip will take place in October or November of 2019 for the eastern half.