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Interesting Festivals

Songkran Festival (13-15 Apr)
The traditional Thai New Year, joyfully celebrated throughout the country with rituals of merit making, cleaning houses, honouring elders, parades of dancers and music troupes, and boat races. What makes the festival most interesting is water splashing, an amusing way to make you cool in the hot season. It is celebrated in a grand way in Chiang Mai and at Phra Pradaeng near Bangkok.

Rocket Festival ( around the 2nd weekend of May)
Called "ngan bun bang fai" in Thai, it is a unique festival of the Northeast, most elaborately celebrated in Yasothon province. Bamboo rockets are launched as an annual plea to gods for plenty of rainfall in the rainy season The festival also includes sacrificial rites, a colourful procession of country folk dances and a beauty contest.

Vegetarian Festival (around 29 Sept - 7 Oct)
People of Chinese origin in Phuket and Trang provinces make merit by abstaining from food and oil from animals, holding processions of god statues along the streets and observing traditional magical rites as a sacrifice to their gods.

Loy Krathong or Festival of Light (11 Nov, the full-moon day)
The romantic night festival, people gather at the waterside to float krathongs, lotus-shaped vessels lovely decorated with flowers and lit candles, as a thanksgiving and worship to the Goddess of Water. Magnificent celebrations are held in Sukhothai and Chiang Mai.

Surin Elephant Round-up (18-19 Nov)
Surin, a northeastern province, is famous of its greatest number of elephants and its world-famous elephant round-up. The show features elephant football, elephant race and hunt. Elephants in ancient battle and demonstrations of their strength and skills.

The River Kwai Bridge Week (26 Nov - 7 Dec)
Held in Kanchanaburi province to commemorate the horrible ordeal suffered in the construction of the Death Railway to be used by the Japanese army as a route of supply from Thailand to Burma in World War II. The festival features a historical exhibition, fun fair, bazaar and exciting light & sound presentation.

Biggest & Best


The biggest gold Buddha image
Phra Sukhothai Traimit or the Gold Buddha of Wat Traimit, Bangkok. Cast in 5 ? tons of solid gold in the Sukhothai style, this statue measures 3.10 m across the laps and 3.91 m high from base to top, and is the largest gold Buddhist stature in the world. It is estimated to be 700-800 years old but had been mistaken for an ordinary stucco image until May 1955.




The highest mountain

Doi Inthanon is one of the most frequently visited national parks of Thailand. A 47-km first class road leads from the plain of Chiang Mai (about 300 m above sea level) gradually up to the 2,565-metre summit.

The most precious Buddha image
"Phra Kaeo Morakot" or the Emerald Buddha, which almost all foreign visitors to Bangkok have seen or will see at the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, is held by the Thai people as a priceless national treasure, much more valuable than even the solid gold statue mentioned above. It was carved from a single block of fine jade across the taps and 66 cm. Sitting posture, it was 48.3 cm wide across the laps and 66 cm. High from base to top.

The tallest Buddhist pagoda
Phra Pathom Chedi, in the heart of the provincial town of Nakhon Pathom, 56 km west of Bangkok, is 120.45 m high and is the tallest Buddhist monument of the world. The original stupa was built many centuries ago and was rebuilt to its present height in 1853 by King Rama IV, who had been in the Buddhist monkhood for 27 years before ascending the throne.

The province with the biggest elephant population
Surin in the Northest bordering Cambodia is known as the home of elephants. They are reared by local farmers as domestic animals like cattle. The annual Elephant Round-up, a well known event in the tourist circles, is held in Surin at the third weekend of November.

The largest crocodile
Over 6 m long and a hybrid from a fresh-water crocodile and a saltwater one, it is kept in Samutprakarn Crocodele Farm, The biggest of its kind in the world. The reptile is 27 years old and weighs 1,114.27 kg.



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