Celebrating our way from September to December
We’re in the final stretch of the year and there is no sign we’re slowing down. In fact, we’re speeding up, as the final 4 months are jam-packed to the brim with festivals all over Thailand!
The last few months of the year sees things getting a little more serious with some important events honouring important figures who made Thailand what it is today. But of course, there is still time for some fun, awe-inspiring beauty and loads of delicious food too.
Still struggling to decide where to go or what to do? Then why not head down at to your nearest travel agent who can guide you through Thailand’s many, many highlights.
Thai National Flag Day, countrywide, 28 September 2020
Thai people are exceptionally patriotic, so it’s no surprise that a day to celebrate their flag was introduced in 2017. Introduced back in 1917, the three colours in the flag represent the 3 most important aspects of Thai culture. Red refers to the Thai nation itself (more specifically the blood that was spilled over centuries to ensure Thailand’s independence), white relates to religion and blue signifies the monarchy.
Phuket Vegetarian Festival, Phuket, 16 to 25 October 2020
Throughout Thailand, for 9 days and nights every October, the Vegetarian Festival sees devotees abstaining from eating any animal-based products. The period is seen as a time of self-cleansing, with hardcore believers abstaining from alcohol, swearing and sex. There are also those who take their purification to the extreme through self-mutilation and fire-walking! The festival which takes place in Phuket is the most well-known in Thailand, with devotees dressing in white and filling the streets with noisy parades for the full 9-day spectacle.
Buffalo Racing Festival, Chonburi, 29 October 2020
Organised Buffalo Racing has been a part of the Chonburi region for over a century. Race day sees months of training and special diets culminate in a 100 metre sprint towards ultimate glory and, naturally, a substantial cash prize. Spectators not only get to watch the race, but get treated to fashion shows, live music, food stalls and even a beauty pageant which sees one lucky local receiving the coveted title of “Miss Buffalo”.
Lopburi Monkey Banquet, Lopburi, 29 November 2020
The monkeys of Lopburi have always been somewhat popular, bringing visitors to the area to watch their antics. In 1989, a local businessman decided to thank them for bringing business to the local economy by providing them with a large banquet. Since then, the Monkey Banquet has become a staple event in Lopburi. The day starts off with an opening ceremony before 4 fruit buffets (spaced at 2-hour intervals from 10am) are laid out. Of course, there is food for humans too, provided by a wide array of markets and food trucks.
Yi Peng Lantern Festival, Chiang Mai, 1 to 3 November 2020
The breath-takingly beautiful Yi Peng Lantern Festival marks the end of Thailand’s rains and the start of the winter season. Chiang Mai has become synonymous with the festival, putting on bold displays of light and colour. Residents decorate the outside of their houses with flowers, and large lantern displays can be found throughout the city. The festival sees a variety of processions, displays, a parade of decorated floats and the release of floating “sky lanterns”.
King Bhumibol Birthday Commemoration Day, countrywide, 5 December 2020
5 December is an annual public holiday celebrating the life of the late monarch, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Regarded as the “father of the nation”, the day coincides with Thailand’s “Father’s Day” as well. For the full month of December, Ratchadamnoen Avenue is draped in thousands of lights. The king was a keen musician, even composing his own pieces for saxophone and clarinet, and this was the inspiration behind the free concerts in Bangkok’s Lumpini Park every Sunday from mid-December.
More events and festivals celebrated in Thailand from September to December 2020
Thai National Flag Day – 28 September 2020
HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej Memorial Day (public holiday) – 13 October 2020
Awk Phansa – 1 October 2020
Chulalongkorn Day (public holiday) – 23 October 2020
Royal Barge Procession, Bangkok – 24 October 2020
Phuket Vegetarian Festival – 16 to 25 October 2020
Buffalo Racing Festival, Chonburi – 29 October 2020
Loy Krathong – 1 November 2020
Yi Peng Lantern Festival, Chiang Mai – 1 to 3 November 2020
Elephant Round-up Festival, Surin – third weekend in November
Monkey Banquet Festival, Lopburi – 29 November 2020
King Bhumibol Birthday Commemoration Day (public holiday) – 5 December 2020
Constitution Day (public holiday) – 10 December 2020
Concert in the Park, Bangkok – Sundays from mid-December 2020
New Year’s Eve (public holiday) – 31 December 2020