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The Chiang Mai Lantern Festival and Loy Krathong Festival are one of the most spectacular events you can experience in Thailand, but sometimes the information about the event can be sketchy at best. The good news is that with a Thailand travel guide you can know when the Chiang Mai Lantern Festival happens and make sure you don’t miss out on the festivities. It is truly the icing on the cake for all tourists visiting Thailand in the month of November.
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When Is the Chiang Mai Lantern Festival?
If you want to feel the magic of the lantern festivals be in Thailand by November. It is held annually on the 12th full moon, which happens in November. The Loy Krathong Festival lights up the cities of this country. You will love the festivals; they are just as interesting to tourists as they are to the locals. They are a pure spectacle of the Thai cultural story with a breathtaking view as well.
Loy Krathong is anticipated and waited for eagerly especially in Bangkok and Chiang Mai. During the festival, candles are placed in baskets created using banana leaves and floated downriver.
They also release lanterns into the air in a stunning night time display. As people release Krathong or lanterns into the air or into the river they are supposed to make a wish and release all bad luck and problems away. It marks a new beginning. Couples who are newly married love this festival as they wish themselves a good and happy marriage by releasing the lanterns together.
Thai people value the Loy Krathong festivals and they go an extra mile to add coins in the krathongs. This is done as an offering to Buddha and water spirts. Some people get into the water after the festivals to steal the offerings. Make sure your Thailand travel guide tells you about these festivals; you just cannot afford to miss the fun.
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When is the 2018 Chiang Mai Lantern Festival and Loy Krathong Festival?
This year (2018), the Loy Krathong festivals with on Friday 23rd November and it will be celebrated throughout the country. The best places to be are Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Sukhothai. Plan ahead if you want to be part of this great festival.
In Chiang Mai, the festival is combined with Yi Peng. The lights are put in lanterns and released to the sky. As the swarm of lanterns float onto the sky, prayers and good luck wishes are released too.
How to enjoy Chiang Mai Lantern Festival and Loy Krathong Festivals
The festivals are attended by tens of thousands of people and are therefore crowded. So you need to:
- Arrive on time; the best time is between 3 and 4 pm. If you get there late, you may not enjoy it as much as it’s hard to fight and find your way to a good spot as the crowd is huge.
- Get your candle. They are handed out by people before the festival begins.
- Have your lighter and a pen to write down your wishes.
- Buy official lanterns and avoid those sold by vendors. Most of them are low quality and not safe to use.
Experiencing the Chiang Mai Lantern Festival is one event you will cherish for a life time. Make sure you not only do your research but ask locals and expats about festivities as they do tend to change from year to year.