Be prepared to get wet – Very wet
Feeling the blazing heat are you! Then by taking part in the Songkran festival, it could just cool you down a bit. That’s if you’re lucky enough not to get completely soaking wet in the process. It has to be the most chaotic and raucous festival held during the month of April, one of Thailand’s hottest months.
What could possibly be better than to have some total stranger walk right up to you and intentionally shoot you with a water-pistol or even better still…. Throw a whole bucket of water over you. Are you feeling better already? Well! Maybe not quite.
Love it or loath it. Whatever you may think, it’s best not to get too livid. Thai people don’t do the anger thing very well. You may have to get accustomed to it. Explore it from a different angle.
This is the perfect relief needed from the day’s intense heat. The alternative would be to stay hidden away in your hotel room for the three-day nationwide festival, but that can’t be fun. Wandering around the streets of Thailand can very easily get extremely hot.
Now I believe most of you (that is to say most foreigners) will more than likely be spending your Thailand vacation during the holiday season around Christmas and New Year. I am referring mainly to western New year that is, but for some of you taking a vacation during the hot season between April and July, it can get ridiculously hot here. So a water festival could be the answer.
Songkran is a public holiday that, in the past, was traditionally Thailand’s New Year, until royal decree decided to shift the official New Year to 1st January. It closely resembles that of the Indian festival of Holi which occurs at roughly the same time. In Thailand it’s a festival whereby normally placid Thai’s let off steam. They do this by throwing water around as a symbolic form of cleansing.
The central occurrence surrounding this festival is the sprinkling of water on one’s friends to bless them, but this usually turns into a boisterous throwing of buckets of water on unsuspecting people passing by. However, young Thai’s pay respect to their elders as well as monks by sprinkling their hands with water and in some cases use perfumed talcum powder.