Tradition trumps modernity for Thailand's Lisu tribe

The simple life of Thailand's Lisu
The simple life of Thailand's Lisu

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    The simple life of Thailand's Lisu

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The simple life of Thailand's Lisu 03:19

Story highlights

  • Many Lisu people live in remote villages in northern Thailand
  • Traditions are still respected and most lead simple way of life
  • Some villages still without electricity
With their distinctive, colorful headwear, Lisu women stand out from the lush green fields of northern Thailand.
Where once opium was grown, cash crops like rice and corn are now harvested, providing a simple way of life for members of one of Thailand's most remote tribal groups.
Around 50,000 members of the Lisu tribe live in Thailand, many in isolated village communities near the border with Laos and Myanmar.
Descendants of semi-nomadic, ethnic Tibetan tribes, their traditions, culture and animistic beliefs remain a strong part of their lives.
"We have a simple happy life," explains the youthful-looking head of the village of Ban Man Pa.
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Elephants provide therapy for autistic

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Lanterns 'soar to the heavens'
Lanterns 'soar to the heavens'

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During torrential rain it's easy to imagine how hard life can be for villagers as dirt roads become muddy streams and people shelter in simple wooden buildings.
Yet most seem content, even if they could do with electricity.
But they don't live completely without the conveniences of modern life, says the village head. Once his family used to own Thai horses, but now they have Japanese ones he jokes. "They're called Toyota."