Song Kran Festival in Bangkok

Do you fancy getting wet in a three day water fight? How about immersing yourself in Thai culture and drinking too many afternoon beers?

If this sounds like its right up your street, then Song Kran the Thai New Year celebration is something you’ll enjoy experiencing. Song Kran runs from the 13th to 15th of April, and is celebrated nationwide. The most popular place to join in the celebrations however is Chiang Mai in north Thailand, though other popular places include Bangkok and Hat Yai.

The festival traditionally began as a gentle pouring of waters over your elders shoulders to bless them and wash away any badness as you welcomed in the New Year. The premise today may still be the same, but in Chiang Mai you’ll find yourself with buckets of water thrown over you regardless of age, and whether your walking or driving along. Trying to avoid these friendly water fights is impossible as they take place all around you and visitors are specially targeted.

Song Kran Festival in Bangkok

Water Fight. Photo by Flashpacking Life

Keep your phone, wallet and passport safe (tuck them away inside your clothing, and its best if they’re in something waterproof too!), you don’t want to find them soggy and unusable after all the fun.


Song Kran lasts for three days, and is a national holiday. The water throwing stops in the evening when the sun is setting so you don’t need to worry about chills, just enjoy the cool water being thrown around and then, grab a shower, throw on your glad rags and settle down in the evening for some food and friendly banter. Be careful if you go out on the town though as some people do tend to be a bit too party animal and cause havoc well into the night.

So, if you fancy a bit of water and some fun, pop Song Krang in your diary for next year, and you might find yourself taking the best holiday you’ve ever had. Just remember to pack a sense of humour, a big water pistol and a waterproof camera! Oh and remember the simple phrase Sawaa di Pi Mai – This means Happy New Year, and will make you popular with the locals for trying the language. It may also get you just a little bit wet as they ‘bless’ you with another bucket of water!

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