1. Chinese New Year Festival
Although the festival originates from China, Thailand has a similar culture to China due to trading. In the past, Chinese people immigrated to Thailand and started a family, which has led to many Chinese-Thai families nowadays. Therefore the Chinese New Year Festival is also celebrated in Thailand. During the event, Chinese-Thai families set up an offering table to pay respect to their ancestors and deities. Many towns also hold a grand celebration during the festival that includes a lion dance and dragon dance. Popular places that hold a Chinese New Year Festival are the Chinatown district around Yaowarat Road in Bangkok, Pak Nam Pho sub-district in Nakhon Sawan, and Mueang district in Phuket.
2. Khao Tok Garland Procession Festival
This is an event that only takes place in Yasothon Province. The event originates from the story of the life of the Lord Buddha: when the Lord Buddha was born, attained enlightenment and gave his first sermon, a large amount of sacred flowers called Montha Rop fell from heaven to pay respect to the Lord Buddha. For this reason, many Buddhists in various provinces have a strong belief about Montha Rop flowers and hold an event based on them. For example, at Maha Chana Chai district in Yasothon, people recreate the sacred flower from roasted rice grains.
Khaotok are roasted rice grains similar to popcorn. The local people make a garland from these Khaotok about 3-5 metres in length. The Khaotok garlands are used as an offering to pay respect to the Lord Buddha. Many communities have their own Khaotok garland procession and hold a contest for the most beautiful garland. Each community has its own unique and beautiful Khaotok garland procession.
3. Valentine Festival
Valentine is a festival known worldwide. It is a festival of love that many countries celebrate, including Thailand. During February, many places hold an event relating to love to celebrate Valentine. Some famous examples are underwater weddings at Trang, and the International Balloon Fiesta at Singha Park in Chiang Rai. This is the biggest and most beautiful balloon festival in Thailand, taking couples high up in the sky to enjoy their lovely time together.
4. Wat Phra Mahathat Cloth Procession Festival
This is an event that takes place only in Nakhon Si Thammarat. Buddhists help to carry a very long cloth above their heads and walk up to the Phra Mahathat Temple. The cloth is then used to cover the base of Phra Mahathat where a relic of the Lord Buddha is enshrined. The event is held on Buddhist holidays such as Makha Bucha Day and Vesak Day.