Songkran Water Festival is one of the most important celebrations according to the Thai lunar calendar. The festival features a number of different events and activities that accolade the importance of water in Thai society and culture.
Anyone planning a trip to Thailand during April would do well to book flights keeping this festival in mind.
About the Festival
For hundreds of years, the Songkran Festival has been seen as a symbol of love and hospitality for fostering a strong relationship with communities, families and society in general. The occasion is meant for people to unwind from the hot mid-summer and also to pay respects to the elders of one’s family and receive their blessings. It is also the day to commemorate the close ones who have passed away.
Traditions of the Festival
On this day, people build pagodas from sand and the event is known as Chedi Sai. The young ones throw water on each other engaging in water fights in a sporting and fun way. On this day, people clean not just their homes but also the public areas in the towns and villages throughout the country. This instils, propagates and promotes a sense of community and social unity. Families visit and welcome their relatives to spend the day together, performing ceremonies at various temples or the Chedi Sai. The festival also allows people to take a break from their daily routines and both the natives as well as the visitors have a memorable and happy experience.
This year, Maha Songkran or the New Year falls on the 13th of April; when the day and the night are of the same duration. The next day, i.e. 14th April will be Nao Day or ‘Middle’ day, followed by the concluding day of the festival. On this day, tourists relax at the beach resort and there is a lot of hilarious water fighting in the streets. This tradition is considered to wash off bad luck. If you wish to participate in the water fight, you can visit several spots around Banglamphu such as Khao San Road, Wisut Krasat, Santhichaiprakan, Phra Athit Road, Rattanakosin Royal Square and Thanon Khao San.