Thailand is one of the most beautiful and diverse countries in the world. It has a rich culture, delicious food, warm people and an abundance of natural beauty. Phuket, in particular, is one of the top travel destinations in the country and hosts a range of different events throughout the year.
One of the most popular times to visit Phuket is during Thai New Year. This traditional festival takes place in April and celebrates the Thai solar calendar. It is a time for families to get together and enjoy time spent outdoors, playing games and enjoying traditional food.
This article will explore what to expect when you visit Thailand during New Year’s celebrations.
What is the Thai New Year?
Thai New Year is celebrated around Thailand every April, and it is a time for people to come together and celebrate. There are many traditions that are observed during this time, such as making merit, wearing new clothes and playing games.
One of the most popular traditions during Thai New Year is the water festival or Songkran. This takes place on the first day of the holiday, and people will gather at temples or in the streets to celebrate. They will throw water at each other and use it to bless each other. It is a fun time and a way for people to cool down during the hot Thai summer.
What can you expect if you are in Thailand during Thai New Year?
First of all, there will be lots of celebrations happening around you. People will be dressed in their new clothes, and there will be music and food everywhere. You will probably see people playing games such as Thai chess or checkers or eating traditional food.
If you want to participate in the festivities, be sure to dress appropriately. Shorts and sleeveless shirts are not allowed in temples, so make sure to pack some long pants and a shirt that covers your shoulders. And, of course, be sure to pack an extra set of clothes if you plan on participating in the water festival!
Thai New Year is a fun time to be in Thailand and a great opportunity to experience some of the traditional cultures. Be sure to enjoy it while you are here!
History of Thai New Year
The history of Thai New Year is a long and celebrated one. The holiday has been observed in Thailand for centuries and is a time for people to come together and celebrate. Thai people follow the Buddhist Calendar, and Thai New Year falls on the first day of the Buddhist year. This means that the date of Thai New Year changes every year, but it is always in April.
The holiday is also known as Songkran Festival. The word Songkran means “astrological passage”. This is because the first day of the Buddhist Year is when the sun enters the constellation, Aries.
How do people celebrate Thai New Year?
Thai people celebrate the festivities of Thai New Year in many different ways.
1. Family Time
The most important aspect of New Year is spending time with family. Thailand is a large country, and many people have to travel long distances to be with their loved ones during the holiday. This can be a difficult and expensive undertaking, but it is worth it to be able to celebrate the new year together.
Thai New Year is a 3-day festival; people get enough time to get back home and meet their relatives every year. Families will often cook traditional meals together and catch up on all the news. Large family barbeques are the favourite activity throughout this beautiful country.
2. Making Merit
It is also common for people to visit temples during Thai New Year. They believe it is a time to reflect on the past year and to start the new year with a clean slate.
People will visit temples to make merit. This is done by giving food to the monks and doing good deeds such as helping out at the temple. This is seen as a way to give back to the community and to show respect for those who have helped them in the past. They would also bathe the Buddha statues to pay respect to this traditional festival. People also pay respect to the temple’s sacred Buddha images.
3. Eating Seafood
Another big part of Thai New Year is eating seafood. This is because it is believed to bring good luck in the new year.
Early morning on Thai New Year’s Day, people will go to the local market to buy fresh seafood. They will then cook it together and eat it with their family and friends. Traditional Thai seafood includes Salt-Crusted Fish, Grilled Prawns, shrimp, mussels, and crab.
4. Countdown Parties
In the days leading up to Thai New Year, there are often countdown parties. These parties are a way for people to let loose and have fun before the new year begins.
They usually involve music, dancing, and drinking. Countdown parties are a time for people to come together and celebrate the start of a new year.
Some people choose to spend the New Year’s holiday by visiting tourist spots or going out for a vacation. However, most Thai people usually just stay at home and enjoy the company of their loved ones. Chiang Mai and Khao Yai are some of the most popular places to visit during Thai New Year. One of the best reasons for travelling during any festival is to enjoy the cold weather in the mountains.
6. Songkran Celebrations
The biggest and most famous celebration of Thai New Year is the water festival, Songkran. This is a time when people can let loose and have fun. People will gather in the streets and throw water at each other. It is also common to see people riding around on motorcycles with water guns, drenching everyone they see. Moreover, there’s Rot Nam Dam Hua accompanying the Songkran festival, where young people take blessing from their elders.
Thai people are very friendly and welcoming; you are sure to have a perfect time around them!
Government Ceremonies on Thai New Year
New Year is considered one of the most important holidays in Thailand. The holiday is celebrated from April 13-15. One of the most notable aspects of the holiday is the government ceremonies that take place.
At this time, a member of the royal family of Thailand will preside over a ceremony at Sanam Luang. The ceremony is called the “Buddha Bathing Ceremony” and is meant to bring good luck and fortune.
On the final day of Thai New Year, April 15, there will be a ceremony at Wat Phra Kaew.
These are just a few of the ceremonies that take place during Thai New Year. If you’re planning on being in Thailand during this time, be sure to check out these events!
Traditional Thai Foods on New Year
One of the best parts of any holiday is the food. Thai New Year is no different. There are a variety of traditional foods that are eaten during this time. 10 of the most popular dishes include:
1. Khao Chae: This dish is made with rice that has been soaked in water and then mixed with flowers, vegetables, and herbs. It is usually served with chicken or pork.
2. Som Tam: This dish is a type of salad that is made with unripened papaya, tomatoes, garlic, chilli peppers, and fish sauce. Som Tam is loved all over Thailand and is a must-try during Thai New Year.
3. Gaeng Keow Wan Gai: This green chicken curry is made with coconut milk, chicken, Thai eggplants, bamboo shoots, green chilli peppers, and Thai basil. It is usually served with rice or noodles.
4. Khao Soi: This is a Northern Thai dish that is made with chicken or pork, egg noodles, and a curry sauce. It is usually served with a side of pickled cabbage.
5. Pad Thai: This popular dish is made with stir-fried noodles, eggs, tofu, shrimp, and peanuts. It is usually served with a side of lime wedges and chilli sauce.
6. Yam Nuea Dad Deow: This is a beef salad that is made with onions, mint leaves, cilantro, and spices. It is usually served with sticky rice.
7. Kai Jeow: This dish is made with minced chicken or pork, ginger, garlic, and cilantro. It is usually served with a side of rice.
8. Tom Kha Gai: This chicken soup is made with coconut milk, galangal, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, and chilli peppers. It is usually served with a side of rice.
9. Gaeng Phet Ped Yang: This is a red curry that is made with duck, pineapple, tomatoes, and bamboo shoots. It is usually served with steamed rice.
10. Khanom Buang: These are Thai-style pancakes that are made with coconut milk, flour, sugar, and eggs. They are usually served with a sweet chilli sauce.
These are just a few of the traditional dishes that are eaten during Thai New Year. Be sure to try some of these dishes if you’re in Thailand during this time!
Places to visit during Thai New Year
Thailand is a country with breathtaking views and rich culture. There are many places to visit during Thai New Year that will allow you to experience all that Thailand has to offer.
Some of the most popular places to visit are:
1. The Grand Palace
This is the most famous tourist attraction in Bangkok. It is home to the Temple of the Emerald Buddha and many other important temples. The Grand Palace is a must-see when in Bangkok.
2. Wat Pho
This temple is home to the largest reclining Buddha in Thailand. It is also a centre for traditional Thai medicine and massage. Wat Pho is a must-visit for anyone interested in Thai culture.
This ancient city is located about an hour outside of Bangkok. It is home to many Buddhist temples and is the former capital of Thailand. Ayutthaya is a beautiful place to visit and offers a glimpse into Thai history.
4. The Floating Market
This floating market is located in Bangkok and is home to hundreds of vendor boats selling everything from food to souvenirs. The Floating Market is a great place to bargain for good deals and to try traditional Thai foods.
5. Chiang Mai
This city is located in Northern Thailand and is home to many temples, markets, and restaurants. Chiang Mai is a great place to visit if you want to experience Thai culture and cuisine.
This province is located in Southern Thailand and is home to many beautiful beaches and islands. Krabi is a popular destination for tourists who want to relax on the beach or go snorkelling and diving.
This island is located in Southern Thailand and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country. Phuket is home to many beaches, resorts, and restaurants.
This small town is located in Northern Thailand and is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Pai is home to many cafes, art galleries, and shops.
This ancient city is located in Northern Thailand and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is home to many temples and is a great place to learn about Thai history.
10. Khao Yai National Park
This national park is located in Northeastern Thailand and is home to elephants, tigers, and other wildlife. Khao Yai National Park is a great place to go hiking and camping.
These are just some of the many places to visit during Thai New Year. Thailand has something for everyone, so be sure to explore all that the country has to offer you!
If you’re looking for a place to experience Thai culture and cuisine on Thai New Year, be sure to visit one of the many places mentioned in this post. From ancient cities to beautiful beaches, Thailand has something for everyone. So pack your bags and get ready to explore!
How do Thai people prepare food for the New year?
Many Thai people prepare food for New Year by cooking special dishes such as Khanom Buang, Khao Tom Mat, and Som Tam. Families cook together and arrange large barbeques for their relatives.
Is there a specific time when the New year festivities take place?
The festivities typically take place from April 13 to 15. However, some people may celebrate for a longer period of time.
Do Thai people celebrate Songkran festival throughout the new year holidays?
No, Songkran Festival is not the only festival Thais celebrate on New Year. The New year festival goes on for three days, and there are several other activities.
Do Thai people only celebrate New Year in April?
No, many Thais also celebrate the beginning of the year in January, according to the Gregorian calendar.
What is the best place to celebrate Thai New Year?
There is no one specific place to celebrate Thai New Year. Many people choose to celebrate at home as a fun family way, while others travel to different parts of Thailand to experience the festivities.
Do Thai people exchange gifts for the Thai New year?
No, it is common for Thais to exchange gifts on the Traditional New Year. Families and friends often give each other money, clothes, and food. Young people prepare roses to be given to others as gifts.
Why are elephants brought to the temple?
The elephants are brought to the local temple as a sign of good luck. It is believed that they will bring prosperity and happiness to those who see them.