The Golden Triangle is the place in northern Thailand where Thailand meets Laos and Myanmar, with the three countries only separated by the Mekong River. The name was given to the region by U.S. officials, back in the day when the area was notorious for being Southeast Asia’s opium growing capital. The Thais call it Sop Ruak, based on the fact that the Mekong meets the Ruak River here. These days, the Golden Triangle’s main claim to fame is tourism, with visitors coming through to take photos of the three countries seen all together, as well as to visit the Hall of Opium museum and other attractions that have sprung up based on the Golden Triangle’s history. The most attractive thing about the area though is its natural beauty, lots of open space, greenery, and quiet river roads, not to mention that it is a jumping off point for further trips to Laos or Myanmar.