Thai New Year 2016

  • 04/03/2019
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  • Admin

Thai New Year or ‘Songkran’ marks the end of the dry season and the beginning of the rain, holding a lot of importance for the country’s agriculture industry.

In fact, there are also other countries practicing the festival like Vietnam and Laos. The word Songkran derives from the word “Sankranti”, which translated means “to move or to change”.

Songkran 2016 falls on April 13 to April 15th and is regarded as the longest and grandest holiday in Thailand, since it is traditionally celebrated for three consecutive days.

A day before the celebration of Songkran, housewives must clean their house and remove all the rubbish, if not it is believed it may bring bad luck for the remaining months of the year.

Visiting local temples and offering food to the Buddhist monks is also commonly practiced however, as part of the belief, Buddha images should be washed carefully so as to bring good fortune to house owners.

The Songkran celebration is rich with symbolic traditions. The ritual of tying white strings to one another’s wrists is an expression of good wishes. While tying the string, the person will recite a short prayer of blessing directly for the individual. These are often left on until they fall off on their own. If someone offers to tie a string on you, be sure to offer your arm with the underside of your wrist facing upwards.

The festival would not be complete without the so called water fight. Armed with water guns and water containers, travellers and natives including children throw water upon others, which symbolises the cleansing and rejuvenating of their bodies.

There are also places in Bangkok where side events take place. While some are busy cleansing and throwing water to the passers-by, there is a pageant contest, or “Miss Songkran” where contestants are clothed in traditional Thai dress.

If you happen to be in Thailand during Songkran, be prepared to get drenched!













Vandu Language Services is based in Lewes, Sussex and has been helping organisations overcome the language barrier since 1999. We provide interpreting, translation, bilingual advocacy and cross cultural training for when you need to communicate clearly across cultures.


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