Thai Festivals

Thai festivals

Nearly every month brings with it a Thai festival – some well known, others not so.

In Isan, an area in northern Thailand, an extraordinary festival is held during the rainy season to give thanks to Phaya-Tan, the god of rain. Farmers gather together at Isan to offer this tribute.

1. Boon Bang Fai

Boon Bang Fai is one of the more spectacular Thai festivals and an important religious celebration of Laos’ New Year, mixing fun and spirituality through parades, music and dancing as well as firing large bamboo rockets into the sky in order to promote rainfall.

Although not a huge celebration, It remains an important event in Vientiane and Pakse cities. Boasting fireworks, musical concerts, candlelit processions (wien thien) as well as firework displays, this week-long festival centers around the temple of That Luang in Vientiane.

At its heart, this festival offers the unique chance of seeing local communities at work as well as providing insight into Thai society in general and how people interact daily with one another. You may even get lucky and see Buddhist artifacts dating back centuries like those found near former royal palaces like Luang Prabang where many ancient statues have been discovered recently.

2. Moo Yang Muang Trang

Moo Yang Muang Trang is an annual Thai festival which celebrates spring. Held annually, celebrations include traditional games and activities meant to bring happiness, joy, and good luck.

People typically visit temples during this festival to offer flowers and gifts to appease good spirits, encourage their work in the coming year, as well as show respect to gods, goddesses and sacred spirits.

People also make offerings of food to monks at temples. The monks then use this food in religious rituals and sacrifices – this custom has become widespread within Buddhism and many adherents are familiar with it.

Thais believe that giving money to monks can help their own economic situation and it is believed that offering monks money may give them an edge in life.

This tradition can also be found in other cultures such as Buddhism and Hinduism, with believers believing that giving money to monks will protect against harmful spirits.

Some consider offering gifts to monks an expression of devotion; it has long been part of Thai traditions. Others see offering such items as an act of disrespect.

Even if you believe the practice of giving money to monks is respectful, there may be reasons to avoid doing so. For instance, your gift might not reach its recipient properly or it could even lead to theft from these religious figures.

If this concerns you, look into finding another church to attend or make donations directly to local charities instead. These options allow you to express your thanks to monks while celebrating holidays more meaningfully.

3. Songkran

Songkran Festival in Thailand is one of the country’s premier celebrations, held every April and offering visitors an incredible glimpse into Thai culture. Best known for its water fights and merit-making traditions, Songkran also allows families and friends to come together while having a lot of fun together!

Thai New Year celebrations serve to release any bad luck or grievances from the previous year and pray for prosperity and good health in the new one. Thai people take great pleasure in this spiritually cleansing activity that holds great meaning to them.

Celebrate with family and friends while paying respects to elderly people and Buddhist monks, scattering images of Buddha and listening to sermons. Additionally, create sand pagodas while enjoying music!

Songkran is not only a religious festival but also a great chance for friends and families to get together, enjoy delicious cuisine, dance freely and have lots of fun.

Many locals travel long distances to take part, offering visitors the perfect opportunity to gain a glimpse into Thai life and culture. Popular areas for Songkran celebrations include Chiang Mai, Bangkok and Pattaya.

At this festival, houses are cleaned, Buddha statues dusted off, and people pay their respects to elderly individuals. In some parts of the country, a procession of Buddha statues can also be seen marching down main streets.

Chiang Mai and Bangkok host the most energetic water-fighting activities, but smaller versions can be found across Thailand. In eastern regions like Si Chai Province people make merit at temples throughout the days of the festival while building sand pagodas.

People also engage in water fights during this holiday season, using hands, buckets or in some instances water guns to launch water at each other and throw it as symbols of purity and health for good luck during the new year. Many believe it will also bring abundant rainfall.

As with any major festival, it is imperative that participants in water fights be aware of safety and take appropriate precautions when participating. Use clean water only, avoid mixing ice into it, and be mindful of anyone being injured by participating.

4. Thai New Year

Songkran (or Thai New Year), one of many Thai festivals, is widely observed by Thais throughout April. It marks the beginning of their traditional calendar. Songkran derives its name from Sanskrit “samkranti,” meaning astrological passage from one zodiac sign to the next.

People would traditionally visit Buddhist temples to donate food or scented water as offerings, pray for good fortune, splash water over Buddha statues and bathe the hands of elderly people in order to receive blessings.

Today’s festival has evolved and become a countrywide water fight, with super soakers, cannons and gallon buckets taking the place of gentle water pouring from yesteryear.

Young people celebrate New Year’s with great gusto by splashing each other with water or firing up water guns to have some fun and soak themselves with all that fun-filled liquid! Streets become packed with revelers while even traffic may be closed off temporarily to allow safe celebrations.

Friends and families often gather to visit local temples on this holiday in hopes that praying will rid them of bad luck and bring good fortune. People also use this occasion as an opportunity to clean out their home in preparation for a fresh new start.

On Day One of Thai New Year celebrations, young people will take to the streets with water guns for massive water fights and also bathe the hands of elders in an effort to receive blessings; finally, wearing red signifies luck and good fortune.

Families will also use this time to clean and prepare for the New Year, by washing their face and hands with scented water to avoid illness during 2019.

Thailand makes the New Year an excellent opportunity for shopping, as shops remain open during these holidays and tourists may find unique and interesting items they wish to purchase.

Boon Bang Fai (the Thai term for “to begin a new year or era”) marks a joyous and festive start to each New Year in Thailand, when people gather on streets for water fights, concerts, street food vendors and much more! This event provides a wonderful chance to meet locals while exploring Thai culture and traditions.