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Loi Krathong, Chiang Mai
Written by Rushenka Christopher on April 28, 2020 Share on

Why you should celebrate Loi Krathong in Chiang Mai

With hundreds of small banana boats decorated with flowers and candles floating on the river and lanterns lighting up the sky, Loi Krathong can definitely be called the most beautiful Thai festival. It is celebrated on the full moon day of the twelfth month of the lunar calendar which usually falls in late November. Although it is celebrated all over Thailand, in Chiang Mai, it coincides with the Lanna festival of Yi Pang which makes it the best place to celebrate this festival of honouring Buddha.

A brief history of the Loi Krathong festival

It is said to have originated from the Hindu festival of lights which is Deepavali which celebrates the spiritual triumph of good over evil. It has evolved in meaning over the past decades and it means different things to different people. In Chiang Mai, it is celebrated to pay homage to the Goddess of Water after a fruitful harvest season while the Thai Buddhists celebrate it to give thanks to Buddha for the previous year and pray for blessings and prosperity in the New Year. Chiang Mai holds several events that reflect the Thai culture and traditions which allows visitors to experience the festival in all fullness and glory.

Ways to celebrate Loi Krathong

Walk along Tha Pae road

Loi krathong
Image source: Google Images

Festivities happen all over the city but Tha Pae road which leads to the Mae Ping River is blocked on this day to host colourful parades where people can walk up to the river with their lanterns and float their decorated leaf boats. The atmosphere after dusk is truly spectacular as you can see the locals dressed in traditional clothes performing rites at the river.

Visit Wat Phan Tao

Light festival, Chiang Mai
Image source: Google Images

This beautiful temple is for those who want to experience the festival away from the crowds. The monks of the Wat Phan Tao temple decorate the temple grounds with colourful northern Thai style lanterns and the traditional oil lanterns and you can participate by lighting your own oil lanterns. It’s a mesmerizing affair and you will truly enjoy the serenity of this place. Pictures cannot do this event justice, you’ve got to be there to feel it.

Be a part of the mass release in Mae Jo

Loi Krathong in Chiang Mai
Photo by Austin Neill on Unsplash

All those pictures you see on the internet of paper candles being released into the sky on this day happens in the meditation centre of Mae Jo. Although people release their lanterns from all over the city, this is where the majority of the crowds come together to enjoy this spectacular event. Due to its popularity, the organizers have started to charge an entry fee to control the crowd. The VIP tickets generally get sold out months in advance but the standard tickets are made available for longer and they cost about $100. Watching a thousand lanterns being released into the sky all at once is one of the most satisfying things to watch. Even if you don’t manage to get tickets, you can still look up into the sky and see these slowly floating away.

Dine at a riverside restaurant

Dinner in Chiang Mai
Image source: Google Images

Lai Krathong has rightfully been called the most romantic Thai Festival. You can reserve a table at one of the riverside restaurants and enjoy being a spectator of this beautiful festival while having a dreamy date night. Be warned that everything gets booked well in advance so you will have to be quick and make reservations as early as possible.

This is a heartwarming festival to celebrate and be a part of. You can experience the traditions of this beautiful country while celebrating one of their most important festivals along with the locals. With the governor of Chiang Mai promoting this festival, its no surprise that people from all over the world flood to this beautiful city to experience something so spectacular.

So, what are you waiting for? Check out the Thailand Packages available on Pickyourtrail’s website and get it personalized as per your needs. The earlier you make your reservations, the better. Pack your festive outfits and get glammed up to be a part of this alluring festival.

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