Annual events and festivals in Thailand are an essential part of the Thai lifestyle. Some are commemorative in nature and are celebrated in honor of Thai kings, whereas others are related to Buddhism. Thailand events and festivals not only provide cultural insights, but they also offer excellent opportunities for tourists. Travelers get a chance to access brilliant shopping bargains and enjoy diverse culinary delights during the festive season. The Thai New Year (Songkran), celebrated during the warm month of April, is one of the biggest festivals in Thailand. The word Songkran is derived from the Sanskrit word sankranthi, which generally means astrological passage. The festival is enjoyed to the fullest when local people drench each other using water guns and containers.
In addition to the new year festivals, other annual Thailand events are an excellent way to enjoy your vacation. Various food, sports, lifestyle, culture, arts and music-related events are celebrated throughout the year. One of the most exciting sporting events in Thailand is the Ko-Lae Boat Race. Held between September 21 and 25, this annual boat race not only provides competitive races between various Thai boating groups, but also offers cultural performances. Since the mid-1970s, the Ko-Lae boat races have been held on the Bang Nara River in the Narathiwat province.
Travelers in search of unique events will find the Trang underwater wedding ceremony a perfect way to enjoy their Thai holiday. Keeping up with traditional Thai weddings, the ceremony invites both local and foreign brides and grooms to participate in this underwater wedding event. The ceremony is generally held every year on Valentine's Day. Other Thailand events and festivals worth attending are the Sakhon Nakhon Wax Castle Festival, which is held annually on October 1 through October 4 in the northeastern Sakhon Nakhon province, and the Chiang Mai flower festival. These events allow travelers to delve into Thailand's rich culture. The Flower Festival uses colorful flowers to create beautiful temples, animals, and scenes from Ramayana, the ancient Hindu text. The Wax Castle event is celebrated every year to mark the end of the Buddhist Rain Retreat. Using beeswax, miniature Buddhist shrines and temples are molded as symbols to bring good karma.
Being one of the most important cultural and commercial cities of Thailand, Bangkok also hosts a variety of events. Popular Bangkok events range from annual sailing, jazz, and beer festivals to the annual Loi Kratong festival and the Chinese New Year. The Bangkok festival of Jazz is specially aimed at jazz-lovers. The event is organized by the Tourism Authority of Thailand and features world-famous jazz musicians and singers. Another unique Bangkok festival is the Thai beer festival, which takes place at the Central World Plaza in November every year and features international beer brands, live performances, and sumptuous Thai food.
The Hua Hin Regatta is the annual sailing event held between July and August. Organized by the Yacht Racing Association of Thailand, the sailing event is one of the most popular sports-related Bangkok events. The competition is held in the quite resort town of Hua Hin, which is located very near the city of Bangkok. Bangkok also celebrates important commemorative festivals such as the queen's birthday, Loi Kratong (candle festival), and the Chinese New Year. The candle festival is celebrated all over the country and requires a water source to set the glowing candles afloat; Bangkok can be the best location to celebrate Loi Kratong because it is situated near the Chao Phraya River. If you're looking to experience true Thai culture during your vacation, consider attending a Bangkok festival or one of the other events around the country.
Travelers will find Phuket a key destination for celebrating various events and festivals. One of the most popular events in Phuket is King's Cup Regatta. Held in December every year, the regatta is known to be one of Asia's biggest and most popular sailing competitions. You can enjoy this event on the beautiful Kata Beach.
The opportunity to attend so many events and festivals is one of the key reasons to visit Thailand, along with the country's beautiful beaches and lush scenery. Whether it is the annual boat race at the Bang Nara River, the colorful Bangkok events, or the Thai New year, Thailand has every reason to celebrate its traditional beliefs and cultures.