Songkran Water Festival 2024 (Thailand): History, Activities & FAQs

Songkran, the world's wettest festival, marks the New Year in Thailand, featuring merit-making, water battles, and temple visits, with regional traditions varying.

Songkran Water Festival 2024: We’re attending the world’s wettest festival, Songkran, from April 13 to 15. This celebration is important to Thais and most Southeast Asians because it marks the New Year. A thorough spring cleansing on ‘Maha Songkran’ and the official start of the New Year on ‘Wan Payawan’ make up the three-day event. Thai New Year celebrations include merit-making, water battles, and temple visits, although each region has its traditions.

Songkran Water Festival: History

Thais celebrate their traditional New Year most unusually, while the rest of the world has moved on. Thais celebrate Songkran, the Buddhist New Year. The sun moves from Pisces to Aries during this time. This day is a historical, religious, and cultural event that gives individuals a fresh start.

Buddhist literature states that Kapila Brahma was beheaded after losing a gamble with Thammabal, a kid. On the sun’s annual transit over Aries, one of his children, escorted by celestial entities, would perform a procession of postures that are now part of the lunisolar calendar. Unlike the zodiac movements around the sun, this procession was called Maha Songkran.

Thais observe “Songkran,” which means “transformation” or “change,” throughout the holiday. Let’s embrace these three days as an opportunity for a fresh start and a new beginning. During the first day of Maha Songkran, people cleaned their homes and public spaces, performed a ceremonial dipping of Buddha sculptures in perfumed water, and started the tradition of water-throwing. On ‘Wan Nao,’ people engage in merit-making activities such as bowing to priests and temples and visiting the elderly. New Year’s Day ends the festivities with further offerings, solemn reflection, and fortunate ceremonies.

National Pet Day 2024 (US): know about its Facts and Activities

Songkran Water Festival: FAQs

Why is water being poured in observance of the Songkran Water Festival?

In addition to welcoming the new Buddhist year, the Songkran Festival signifies an opportunity for a new commencement and a fresh start. Water is considered a representation of purification, and the act of dumping water is interpreted as expiating previous transgressions and initiating a fresh beginning. The reason scented water is applied to the abdomen and body of Buddha figurines is for this reason.

Is participation in the Songkran Water Festival festivities limited to Thai nationals only?

Despite the cultural, religious, and historical significance of this festival to the Thai people, its observance is not limited to Thai citizens alone. Many individuals book trips to Thailand around this time to partake in the festivities. As a result, anyone who happens to be in the area during this time should plan on getting wet, getting their hands imprinted with clay, and enjoying the festivities.

Am I required to endure water spray during the Songkran Water Festival?

In a nutshell, the answer is affirmative. The most prudent course of action is to remain at home to prevent precipitation. Only the elderly, monks, police officers, and authorities are granted an exemption from the water-pouring festivities. Therefore, if getting wet will make you angry, avoid the streets of Thailand at the time and do not ruin the enjoyment for others.

Songkran Water Festival: Activities

Participate in a water bottle

The Thai people engage in water battles across the nation in observance of this day. Expect to get drenched if you find yourself in the country during this time, and ensure that your attire reflects this. Nonetheless, if you are not in the vicinity, today is a pleasant occasion to assemble family and friends for a lighthearted exercise in water battles. Prepare your armor, including buckets, water cannons, balloons, and readyies for battle.

Observe a Buddhist stupa

Despite its apparent lightheartedness and enthusiasm, this holiday holds significant spiritual and religious significance for a great number of people. One of the primary objectives of this festival is the accumulation of merit, which is accomplished through self-reflection, presenting food and other offerings to monks at temple visits, and donating alms. During this time, devote some time to visiting a nearby Buddhist temple and meditating on the coming year.

Utilize a plaster mask.

The application of “Wai,” a clay mixture composed of white talcum powder and water, is a customary method of commemorating Songkran. A considerable number of individuals, especially minors, traversed the streets of Thailand during this period with clay-covered body parts. Furthermore, they endeavor to involve all individuals by applying some to you and extending their best wishes for the coming year. Today, you can contribute to the convenience of your residence by incorporating skin-friendly clay masks into your daily beauty regimen.

The Songkran Water Festival: Five Facts

It signifies the beginning of the monsoon season.

Additionally, the Songkran Water Festival signifies the commencement of the wet season and the conclusion of the arid season.

White threads possess utility.

The act of adorning one another’s wrists with white strings while reciting a supplication constitutes a gesture of best wishes.

Each day and night is equal.

In Thai culture, Songkran signifies the supreme cycle, during which the sun enters Aries and the lengths of day and night are divided in half.

Attending a pageant is the topic.

Mr. and Miss Songkran’s coronation is a significant component of the Songkran festivities.

Water that is not acceptable

Songkran festivities are governed by regulations that strictly forbid the utilization of contaminated and extremely chilled water.

Songkran Water Festival: Importance

It is twofold in celebration.

As previously stated, the official Thai New Year celebration has been relocated to January 1, the same day that the majority of the world observes the holiday. Nevertheless, this has had no impact on the significance of Songkran, which continues to be observed as a national holiday. This provides two justifications for the celebration and doubles the enjoyment!

It is a joyful holiday.

The Songkran Water Festival is a joyful occasion. Even more thrilling is the fact that this nationwide public holiday is jam-packed with fascinating activities that anyone can participate in for three entire days!

The occasion calls for a water skirmish.

Who does not enjoy a traditional water fight? We are never too old to have some fun with water, and that is precisely what makes this holiday so enjoyable. It affords us an exceptional opportunity to recreate childhood memories while making an impact.

Songkran Water Festival: Dates

2024April 13Saturday
2025April 13Sunday
2026April 13Monday
2027April 13Tuesday
2028April 13Thursday

National Name Yourself Day 2024 (US): Explore its Unique History and Facts

Share your love