Urak Lawoi in Thailand

Joshua Project has identified the Urak Lawoi only in Thailand





Largest Religion

Main Language



The Urak Lawoi is an ethnic group residing on several islands off the western coast of Thailand. They are one of several ethnicities sometimes known as sea gypsies. The Urak Lawoi way of life has been firmly connected to the sea, and their seaside villages were established with a communal ethic that ensured that most things were shared, and that everyone knew each other. Animist by origin, the Urak Lawoi believed that every beach, sea and bay possessed a spirit that had to be respected. Today, the Urak Lawoi way of life is changing due to the national Marine Park, the influx of tourists, and competition with commercial fisheries.

Ministry Obstacles

Pray the lure of materialism will not prevent these people from realizing their spiritual needs.

Outreach Ideas

Pray that Christians among the tourists in the region will notice the Urak Lawoi people, befriend them, and share the love of Christ with them. The New Testament is available in their language.

Pray for the Followers of Christ

Pray the few followers of Christ among this people will be accurately taught the ways of Christ, and will live lives of holiness and joy.

Pray for the Entire People Group

Pray for safety for these seafaring people, and that they won't be exploited because of the many tourists now visiting their villages.

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Urak Lawoi
People Name in Country Urak Lawoi
Population in Thailand 1,900
World Population 1,900
Countries 1
Progress Scale 1.2
Least-Reached Yes
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Chao Lay, Lumoh Lawoi, Sea Gypsies, Thai Mai, Urak Lawoi Aborigine
Affinity Bloc Malay Peoples
People Cluster West Malaysia Indigenous
People Name General Urak Lawoi
Ethnic Code AUG05
People ID 15722
Country Thailand
Region Southeast Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country South, west coast, Phuket and Langta islands.   Source:  Ethnologue 2010
Languages & Dialects on file:  2  (up to 20 largest shown)
Thai, Southern Urak Lawoi': Urak Lawoi
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Thai, Southern Urak Lawoi': Urak Lawoi
For Primary Language: Urak Lawoi'

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1976)
New Testament Yes   (1998)
Complete Bible No
Audio Bible Online
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Bible: Today's Malay Version Text / Printed Matter
Bible: Today's Malay Version with Deuterocanonicals Text / Printed Matter
Online New Testament (FCBH) Audio Recordings
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 1.00 %)
2.00 %
Ethnic Religions
98.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
10.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
35.0 %
Roman Catholic
55.0 %
Photo Source: Peoples of the World Foundation   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Map Source: Bryan Nicholson / cartoMission  
Profile Source: Joshua Project  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

Copyright © 2015 Joshua Project.  A ministry of Frontier Ventures.