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Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year is a time of firecrackers, a time when lion dancers parade through the streets and time when Thai households ‘spring-clean’ is celebrated in February by all Chinese-Thais. Lanterns line the streets and the smell of incense wafts through the air. Dragon parades weave down roads and children gad about everywhere.

The most frenetic festival in the country is that of Songkran, the Luna New Year. Held from the 13th to 15th April each year…it’s a wet one! Traditionally it was celebrated by Buddha images being bathed with water and the showing of respect to monks and elders. From the sprinkling of water onto someone’s hands as a sign of respect it has evolved into mass drenching for anyone who decides to venture outdoors. This has to be one of the friendliest, though wet, festivals anywhere and a great way to make new friends.

Buddha’s Birthday
The 15th May is Buddha’s Birthday. Local Wats (Buddhist Temples) celebrate by holding candlelit processions. A tourist may take part in these parades and it can prove great fun.

Seafood Festival
Seafood Festival Usually held in May, this festival is designed to publicise the delicious seafood available in Phuket and attracts visitors during the rainy season. Activities include a Marine tourism Resources Parade, seafood stalls, demonstrations of regional cuisines, and cultural shows.

Asanha Puja
July, sees Thai Buddhists celebrating Buddhist ‘lent’ or Asanha Puja, the full moon festival. Beginning mid to late in the month, this is the period when young men enter their monk hood for the rainy season and ordained monks remain in a single monastery for three months. One can view Buddhist temples throughout the year, but this tradition can be picturesque due to the activity of the saffron robed followers.

Vegetarian Festival
The Vegetarian Festival held in early October is celebrated in Phuket and Trang only. For this almost weeklong celebration, Chinese Buddhists eat only vegetarian food.