Thailand is often associated with beautiful beaches of white sand, tropical jungles and golden Buddhist temples. But this friendly country also has a fascinating culture that is deeply influenced and influenced by religion and spirituality.
It’s the best way to see Thailand in its amazing ethnic diversity than through its incredible festivals. These amazing events are full of color, sacred rituals and unique ancient traditions that will make you want to book a flight and see them in person.
Phuket Vegetarian Festival
The Phuket Vegetarian Festival is a bizarre and shocking event, contrary to its name. Some locals, particularly those of Chinese descent, abstain from eating meat during this festival and walk barefoot on hot charcoals. They also voluntarily puncture their bodies with strange objects to purify their souls.
These ceremonies are dedicated to Lam Tao (Taoism’s gods) and Pak Tao (Taoism’s gods). They include fireworks, drumming, and delicious vegetarian food. You can see the street processes of participants in a trance walking around the island. However, the most spectacular rituals are usually held near Chinese temples.
This 9-day spectacle is unique, but it is not for the weak-hearted.
Chinese New Year
The Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival, is one of the world’s most vibrant and colorful annual events. It is celebrated worldwide with great enthusiasm by Chinese communities. Thailand, home to 14% of China’s population, is no exception.
One of the most extravagant celebrations occurs in Yaowarat, Bangkok’s Chinatown. Here, street life comes to life with firecrackers and food stalls, lion dances, theatrical dragon parades, lion dancing, firecrackers and red Chinese lanterns. Temple celebrations and traditional cultural and musical performances are also possible in many locations throughout Thailand, such as Phuket, Koh Samui and Chiang Mai or the province of Nakhon Sawan.
Chiang Mai Flower Festival
A spectacular parade of floats and stunning floral displays make the Flower Festival in Chiang Mai one of The Lands of Smiles’s most memorable experiences.
This charming northern Thai city is known as the Rose of the North, bursting with sweet scents and vibrant blooms in every hue.
In the heart of the old town, the Suan Buak Hat Park is covered in stunning orchids, multicolored chrysanthemums and the native Damask Rose. Landscape experts with the greatest talents gather to display their intricate creations here. They include everything from stunning flower arrangements and waterfalls to miniature gardens.
The spectacular flower parade along Charoen Muang Road highlights Chiang Mai’s Flower Festival. The parade features more than 25 colorful floats with flowers that travel through the city, accompanied by dancers in traditional costumes and local drumming groups.
Songkran (Water Festival, New Year)
Songkran, which marks the traditional Thai New Year (13 April) and the end of the dry season, is the longest and most important holiday in the country. This unique festival is often called Thailand’s Water Festival and is known for its unusual water fights.
The tradition of throwing water at people is deeply rooted in their culture. It is used to bring good fortune for the next year and wash away all troubles. Locals also celebrate Songkran New Year Water Festival with fun traditions such as cleaning their homes and visiting temples to see Buddha statues, and bringing food to the monks.
The best water fights are in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Pattaya. But there is plenty to do on the popular Thai islands Ko Samui Ko Tao, Phi Phi and Phuket.
Loi Krathong (“The Festival of Light”)
Loi Krathong, which is held every year on the night of the 12th lunar month according to the Thai lunar calendar, is one of Thailand’s most beautiful festivals.
This ancient spiritual festival, also known as the Festival of Lights or the Lantern Festival, honors Buddha, the goddess of the River, and is celebrated across the country with parades and colorful celebrations. However, the most important tradition is the launch of Krathongs.
A Krathong, a tiny lotus-shaped vessel, is usually made of a banana stalk or bread. It can be decorated with flowers, candles and incense sticks. People gather by lakes, rivers, and canals on the night of the Full Moon to release these baskets onto the water.
Loi Krathong is in conjunction with the Yi Peng Festival in Chiang Mai. Thousands of paper lanterns ( Kom Loi ) are lit and released into the sky. It creates a magical scene.