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Loy Krathong

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Loy Krathong
Photo by Takeway
Loy Krathong, the most beautiful Thai festival of the year, begins on the full moon of the twelfth month of Thailand’s lunar calendar (usually the end of October or beginning of November) and runs for three days in most areas. During this period people make or buy small krathong (floats) adorned with candles and flowers and float them on rivers, oceans or other bodies of water to let go of bad luck and bad feelings and welcome in good luck and happiness. In some parts of the country, people also light khom fai lanterns and float them into the sky.

Over the years, this Thai festival has also taken on a romantic meaning, and some younger Thais consider it similar to Valentine’s Day. You’ll see many young couples making, or buying, krathongs and taking them down to the water to release them. Like any other Thai festival, there are also lots of vendors selling snacks and treats wherever people congregate to release their krathongs. The festival is visually stunning and everyone who participates is in a cheerful and friendly mood, making it a truly memorable experience for visitors.

There are celebrations all over the country but Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Sukhothai have very elaborate festivals, complete with other entertainment and tons of people. If you don’t have your own krathong (traditionally made from folded banana leaves adorned with flowers), don’t worry, as you’ll be able to find them to buy almost anywhere right before and during the festival.

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