Events & Festivals
Find Events & Festivals
15 April 2014 - 17 April 2014
Contact Details : TAT Call Center 1672
TAT Bangkok Office
Tel. +66 2250 5500
Category : Fairs & Festivals
Scale : Local
Submit inquiries and request for more information for this
Songkran is the traditional Thai New Year celebrated on 13 to 15 of April, 13th being the Thai New Year, 14th being the nation’s Family Day, and 15th being National Elderly Day. This festival is the time for family reunions at which family members get together and make merit at the temple and gently pour water mixed with Thai fragrance, called “Nam Op Thai,” over the Buddha images. The Nam Op Thai is also used to pour over the hands of the elders when asking them for their blessing.
The Songkran Festival would not be complete without the water throwing sessions. Most of the activities during Songkran Festival involve water, as the underlying significance of this festival is the process of cleansing and purifying one’s self before starting the New Year.
Highlight: Visitors can celebrate Songkran Festival nationwide or experience the uniqueness of the event in major cities as follows:
Bangkok: Thais believe that a visit to nine temples in one day gives the worshippers prosperity and good luck. Visitors can make merit at any nine temples around Bangkok, followed by throwing water at some of the most famous venues; such as, Khao San Road and/or Silom Road.
Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya: Apart from the alms-giving and merit-making activities, you can watch the Miss Songkran beauty pageant, see a cultural performance, and throw water. The highlight of Songkran in Ayutthaya is the chance to play with elephants in the water.
Chiang Mai: Chiang Mai Songkran Festival includes a procession of Phra Phuttha Sihing, a highly revered Buddha image, around the city. People on both sides of the road sprinkle fragrant water on the Buddha image. This ceremony is followed by the sprinkling of water to seek the blessing of the elders, creating sand-pagodas, and watching Lanna cultural performances and folk games. The festival is not complete without water-throwing activities.
Nong Khai: Visit Wat Pho Chai and sprinkle water on the sacred Luangpho Phra Sai, the Buddha image highly revered by the local Thai and Lao people. Take part in the water-throwing as well as enjoy the local North-Eastern cuisine and cultural performances by the Mekong River.
Nakhon Phanom: One of the major rituals performed in Nakhon Phanom at the Songkran Festival is to create a pagoda with sand, and sprinkle fragrant water over sacred sites; such as, the Phrathat Phanom. Enjoy throwing water at Khao Pun Road, and explore the folk plays and entertainment at Hat Sai Tong Si Khotrabun and Amphoe Renu Nakhon.
Khon Kaen: Songkran Festival in Khon Kaen features ox-cart processions decorated with flowers and beauty pageants. A not-to-be-missed place to visit is Khao Niao Road (Sticky Rice Road), similar to Bangkok’s Khao San Road, where you can throw water as well as join the local elders who perform folk dances. Moreover, you can participate in the human wave activity recorded in the Guinness Book of World Record as the largest human wave in the world.
Hat Yai: Hat Yai celebrates Thai New Year differently from other provinces of Thailand with the Hat Yai Midnight Songkran Festival. Cultural performances and entertainments start late and the water-throwing starts after nightfall.
Nakhon Si Thammarat: Celebrate the Thai New Year from 13 to 15 April at Si Thamma Sokarat Park and Sanam Na Mueang. The activities include making merit, bathing the Phra Phuttha Sihing Buddha image with fragrant water, and watching the Hindu-based Nang Kradan procession and cultural performances, as well indulging in the water-throwing.
Phuket: Songkran Festival on the Beach attracts locals and foreigners at Hat Patong. You can witness the procession of the Phra Phuttha Sihing Buddha image along Hat Patong, and participate in several other activities, including the water splashes.
Chon Buri: There are two places in Chon Buri – Bang Saen Beach and Pattaya – where Songkran is celebrated after Songkran Day. This event is called ‘Wan Lai’ Songkran Festival, translated as “Flowing Day” of Songkran Festival. The Wan Lai Bang Saen Songkran Festival and Wan Lai Pattaya Songkran Festival feature making merit at temples, building sand-pagodas, and watching cultural performances and beauty contests, as well as the water-throwing sessions. The highlight is the ‘Kong Khao’ procession which shows appreciation towards the Goddess of Rice.
Samut Prakan: Phra Padaeng Songkran Festival is usually held a few days after Songkran at Amphoe Phra Padaeng. This is a Mon or Raman style event as there is a large Raman community living in Phra Pradaeng. At this festival, you can learn how to play Saba, a Raman game, as well as watch the Beauty Queen and King Pageants.
Sukhothai: Songkran Festival in Sukhothai is celebrated at Wat Traphang Thong in Sukhothai Historical Park, Si Satchanalai Historical Park, and Phraya Litai Memorial Plaza. Visitors can offer alms to the monk and join in the bathing rituals of the Buddha image on 14 April, and enjoy various forms of entertainment; such as, cultural performances, elephant parade, and food fair. The highlight is the unique elephant back ordination procession, which is held annually from 7-8 April at Ban Hat Siao, Amphoe Si Satchanalai.
Suphan Buri: Suphan Buri celebrates Songkran Festival along Nen Kaeo Road with a procession of highly revered Luangpho To Buddha image, followed by a procession of various districts of Suphan Buri province and floral carts procession. Enjoy folk performances, games, Miss Songkran Beauty Contest, and water-throwing activities.