November in Thailand is a magical time. With floating krathongs (baskets) on the waterways and khum loi (lit lanterns resembling tiny hot air balloons) floating into the sky, it is a photographer’s dream! Thais use this festival as a time to reflect and let go of personal problems and negativity and open oneself for joy and prosperity in the New Year. Loy Krathong is a spiritual and sacred event that invites new beginnings via spiritual cleansing. As a westerner, participating in Loy Krathong events should be regarded as a privilege, and it is important to treat the event with the right amount of respect and joyfulness. It is a time for sharing with your family and friends. While you are celebrating Thanksgiving with your family and friends this month, it is good time to plan for a great family vacation to Thailand for Loy Krathong around November 15th in 2016! This is a popular holiday. Air seats and hotels fill up early, so plan now for 2016.
Loy Krathong takes place on the evening of the full moon of the 12th month in the traditional Thai lunar calendar. In the Western calendar, this usually falls in November and their celebration has some similarities with our own American Traditional Thanksgiving.
Traditionally, krathongs are made from a slice of the trunk of a banana tree or a spider lily plant. Modern krathongs are often made of bread baked in the form of a turtle. A krathong is decorated with banana leaves, incense, flowers and candles. A small coin is traditionally included as an offering to the Goddess of Water.
If you are planning a romantic holiday It is said that couples can get an insight into the future of their relationships by watching whether their krathongs float together or drift apart. If you’re unsure about what to do, just follow a nearby monk’s lead—this event was exclusively for monks before the greater population was invited in.
Loi Krathong coincides with the Lanna (northern Thai) festival known as Yi Peng. Thousands of Lanna-style sky lanterns called khum loi (“floating lanterns”) are launched into the air. They float up to the sky much like a tiny hot air balloon. Khum loi are made from a thin fabric, such as rice paper, stretched over a bamboo or wire frame, to which a candle is attached. When the candle is lit, the resulting hot air is trapped inside the lantern and creates enough lift to float the kum loi. What a beautiful sight to see hundreds or thousands of these lanterns float into the sky, taking peoples hopes and dreams for the new year to the Gods for fulfillment.
The most elaborate Yi Peng celebrations can be seen in Chiang Mai, the ancient capital of the former Lanna kingdom, where now both Loy Krathong and Yi Peng are celebrated at the same time resulting in lights floating on the waters, lights hanging from trees/buildings, standing on walls, and lights floating in the sky.
This is truly a magical and memorable sight, creating a communal feeling of joy and hope for the New Year that can’t easily be found anywhere else. Be sure, to release your krathong and kum loi with friends or family and everyone can make a wish for their future when you let go.
Celebrate Loy Krathong with your family to create lasting memories of your wonderful time together in Thailand. Loy Krathong vies for the title of most important Thai holiday with Songkran, the water festival held in April. Both festivals are wonderful family vacations that will give years of fond memories of time spent together. Both festivals are wonderful family vacations that will give your family years of fond memories of time spent together.
Other holiday traditions include setting eels and turtles free in the river or pond. Children may have fun doing this. Other celebrations include beauty pageants, parades with large floats fashioned as giant krathongs, each with their own theme. Many of the celebrants on the floats dress in regal Thai costumes or as mythical Thai beings.
Forge unforgettable memories together as a family or a couple. Taking part in these beautiful traditions will be a meaningful and memorable highlight of your client’sThailand holiday. The cool weather during this part of the year also makes it a wonderful time to explore the many other wonders of Thailand.
V’explore Tours will craft a Loy Krathong celebration specially suited to your clients’ interests, time frame and budget, creating memories that will linger for years!
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