Welcome November, this month is the special month which annually celebrates the festival called “Loy Krathong”, it takes place on the evening of the full moon of the 12th month in the traditional Thai lunar calendar. It is believed that the purpose is to show their gratitude to the Goddess of the river that give plentiful usage of water and ask for forgiveness, some evidence to believe that is to worship Buddha's footprint on the river side. Moreover, many people believe that floating the Krathong refers to floating away misfortune and asking for good luck in the future.
Loy Krathong is claimed to have begun in the Sukhothai period by a high royal lady named Nopphamas or Tao Sri Chulaluck , the first person who created the beautiful Kratong to celebrate as part of the royal ceremony, and then keep this ritual continue celebrating until today, this popular festival symbolizes the close ties between the Thai culture and water. Loy Krathong is also celebrated in other Asian countries, though under the different names, the name in Thai word "loy" meaning to float, while "krathong" meaning to a small decorative basket or raft which are floated on a river.
In Thailand, people enjoy creating their own Krathong in their own style and creation, but most likely to use natural material such as banana leaves, banana trunks, local flowers, natural paper, candle, incense sticks etc. Some might use bread instead of synthetic materials showing their concern for environment. Other than those materials, someone will put some coins in their Krathongs as their belief. Nevertheless, Loy Krathong Festival remains the most romantic and special occasion for people to represent their gratitude and loving to another especially for lovers who believed if they float Krathongs together, their love would be stay forever.
The main activities on this festival are Krathong contest and a beauty contest known as Noppamas Beauty Contest. Furthermore, there are fireworks and other types of traditional performances are in the festival too. The festival is celebrated over the Kingdom held by local governments and private organizations
The major areas that organize the festival are Bangkok, Sukhothai, Chiang Mai and Tak provinces. Each venue features its own traditions and activities; at Sukhothai, the festival annually held at Sukhothai historial park where is one of most beautiful Loy Krathong festivals in the Kingdom, getting back to Sukhothai period with light and sound performances and fireworks. At Chiang Mai, they float Lanterns made from paper into the sky or called "Sky Lantern", but at Tak, the Kratongs are made from coconut shell and put candle inside, then let them float along the river, or called "Kratong Sai". If you plan to visit Thailand in November, this is the special festival that you should not miss.
WTT wishes you are happy and in good fortune for Loy Krathong festival.