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Festivals around the World: Thai New Year

We love learning about our students' cultures! Here's what we learned from our wonderful Manassanan.

Thailand is famous for its Songkran Festival. The festival takes place annually on 13th - 15th April and is also well known as Thai New Year. It is a celebration to mark the start of the new year as the Thai believe that water is spiritually purifying. It cleanses you of sins and any bad luck from the past year as well as to bless you with fortune, happiness and prosperity for the year ahead.

The Songkran Festival has been developed into a Water Festival which is luckily held in the hottest month of the year. It traditionally starts with visiting local temples in the morning so as to offer food to the Buddhist monks. On this specific occasion, performing water pouring on Buddha statues and on the Buddhist monks, respectively.

What’s more, Thai people also make good luck by bringing sand to the temples for building sand pagodas but the purpose behind that is to give the sand for the temples’ constructions or repairing in the future. Having visited temples, the Thai return home and then begin to pour water onto the family elderly‘s hands, feet as well as shoulders respectfully before the young commence throwing water at each other delightedly and get soaked.

For the ones who are hooked on attending the water festival, there are popular places in different parts of Thailand which everyone is welcomed to, such as Khaosan Road in Bangkok, Bangla in Phuket, Pattaya Beach Road in Chonburi, Nimmanheamin Road in Chiangmai and Khaonew Road in Khonkan. The must have items to enjoy this festival are the 'Songkran Shirt' or a colourful flower print shirt, water gun, and waterproof phone bag etc.

By Manassanan Sook-Erb

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