TAT’s Loi Krathong Festival 2023 kicks off the Thailand Winter Festival

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The event from 24-28 November at Bangkok’s Phadung Krung Kasem Canal also marks the beginning of the Colourful Bangkok Winter Festival

TSNN Bangkok, 26 November 2023 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is inviting all to experience one of Thailand’s oldest and most colourful festivals while gaining insights into the charming traditions of Chiang Mai, Roi Et, Samut Songkhram, Sukhothai, and Tak at the Loi Krathong Festival 2023 at Bangkok’s Phadung Krung Kasem Canal.

Ms. Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol, Minister of Tourism and Sports, said “This special Loi Krathong event is held annually in Bangkok to give tourists a taste of the importance of the festival to the Thai people while showcasing how it is observed differently throughout the country. This year festivity is especially important as it marks the start of the Thailand Winter Festival and the Colourful Bangkok Winter Festival, the grand year-end spectacles announced by the Thai government to promote Thai soft powers and elevating national events and festivals on the global stage.”

Loi Krathong is celebrated annually in Thailand on the full moon of the 12th lunar month, which this year falls on 27 November. All around Thailand, people gather in the evening at lakes, rivers, canals, and beaches to float krathong, which are banana leaf rafts, decorated with flowers, incense and candles, as a way of paying respect to the river goddess.

This year, TAT hosts the Loi Krathong Festival at the Phadung Krung Kasem Canal, near the Bangkok Railway Station (Hua Lamphong). The celebration takes place through to 28 November with main activities scheduled on 25-27 November from 16.00-21.00 Hrs. and run until midnight on the full moon night.

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Mr. Apichai Chatchalermkit, TAT Deputy Governor of Tourism Products and Business, said “Under the ‘Moonlight Reflection Loi Krathong Along the Canal’ concept, this year event promises to delight visitors with the nightly ‘Lighting Illumination Show’ to highlight the five distinctive Loi Krathong traditions. These are the Yi Peng Festival of Chiang Mai, Somma Nam Khuen Peng Seng Prathip of Roi Et, Loi Krathong Kap Kluai Mae Klong of Samut Songkhram, Loi Krathong and Candle Festival of Sukhothai, and Loi Krathong Sai Festival and a Thousand Floating Lanterns of Tak.”

Nightly activities promoting Thai cultural values include workshops on krathong making with biodegradable materials, stations on Royal Thai Cuisine cooking, music performances, cultural dances, and floating krathongs on the Canal.

To help protect the environment and be a part of Thailand’s sustainable tourism effort, TAT encourages all to use krathongs made from biodegradable materials and limit the floating to one krathong per family wherever in Thailand they celebrate the festival. At the Bangkok event, TAT stresses the importance of a zero landfills concept by ensuring proper waste separation and disposal.

The Loi Krathong Festival 2023 is expected to help fuel domestic tourism, stimulating 2.04 million trips and 6.1 billion Baht in revenue. Of these, the festivities in Chiang Mai, Roi Et, Samut Songkhram, Sukhothai, and Tak are estimated to generate 527,070 trips totalling 1.76 billion Baht.

Meanwhile, TAT’s Loi Krathong Festival 2023 at Bangkok’s Phadung Krung Kasem Canal is estimated to see 299,730 Thai visitors, generating around 1.2 billion Baht.