The Perfect Blend of Culture and Carnival Atmosphere
If you love Thai culture and tradition and are keen to learn more about it – while having bucket-loads of fun at the same time – then don’t miss Bangkok’s vibrant River Festival, “A Delightful Stream of Culture”, which will be taking place along the Chao Phraya River from November 1-6. Part of the Tourism of Thailand’s 2015 marketing plan to promote Thainess, this incredible cultural event will showcase Thai values and traditions – and where better to do that than on the banks of the River of Kings in the heart of the colourful Thai capital?
It won’t surprise you to learn that the Chao Phraya has played a pivotal role over the years, influencing not only the growth and development of Bangkok itself but Thai culture and tradition in general. During the River Festival, five iconic sites located along the banks of the river will enjoy a glorious reinvention and become the settings for all kinds of fascinating celebrations, activities and rituals.
At The Temple of the Reclining Buddha, you will be able to enjoy an array of religious and cultural activities which will include the tradition of paying respect to the Reclining Buddha; an exhibition of vintage photography; a community fair selling all kinds of colourful arts and crafts; and a series of classic Thai plays at the Prince Theatre, which is modelled on the royal playhouse once frequented by King Rama V the Great!
Wat Arun, or the Temple of Dawn, is another of the capital’s most famous cultural gems and will be hosting its fair share of rituals and more light-hearted entertainment. From the screening of old Thai films to the replica of an old market selling rare but delectable Thai dishes, you won’t want to miss all the goings-on at this remarkable temple.
Meanwhile Wat Kalaya will be hosting a riveting Chinese opera show and bustling community fair, among other activities, and will give you the chance to explore this stunning temple at night, while at Wat Prayoon you can enjoy the melodic strains of a traditional Thai ‘Khun In’ band, with its five groups of percussion and woodwind instruments. The temple will also be home to a vibrant fair where you can taste a plethora of tantalising fusion Thai dishes and you will get the chance to take your own vintage photo.
Last but not least the fifth River Festival venue, Asiatique The Riverfront, is a hub of modernity and luxury but has a distinct retro feel as it was inspired by the Bangkok of the 1900’s – more specifically, the period between 1907 and 1947. This unique lifestyle project and super-chic shopping mall will play host to all kinds of fun and fascinating activities during the River Festival. Enjoy the chance to make your own krathongs as part of the beautiful Loy Krathong ceremony, marvel at displays of vintage fireworks and let yourself be entertained by a selection of fascinating activities including displays of a form of Thai boxing known as Muay Talay, or ‘Sea Boxing’.
Throughout the course of this exciting cultural extravaganza, visitors can take advantage of the complimentary shuttle boat services which will be available along two routes. A return service will journey between Yod Phriman Market in Pak Klong Talad and Asiatique, while a circular service will encompass the Yod Phriman Market, Wat Pho, Wat Arun, Wat Kalaya and Wat Prayoon.
With so much to see and do, the six days and six nights of this amazing event are sure to be filled with plenty of fun, excitement and exoticism. So if you have strong affection for Thailand and its vibrant culture, traditions and history (or if you simply love to have a good time in a spectacular exotic setting) then make sure you don’t miss this remarkable festival, which is sure to become a highly popular fixture on Bangkok’s jam-packed cultural calendar. iTravel Channel can’t wait to experience this dazzling blend of carnival fun and rich culture – make sure you come and join us!
In the meantime, for more info about the buzzing Thai capital of Bangkok why not check out our Destinations special — and to learn more about how to use the river to your advantage don’t miss our iTips edition on the city’s colourful canal taxis!
You can enjoy the colourful krathong ceremony at Asiatique The Riverfront but another great venue to enjoy this dazzling Thai festival is the Shangri-La Hotel Bangkok, which will be hosting Thailand’s Four Regions Miracle Night on November 6.
Disclaimer: Some of the images and videos presented in this blog are not the property of Kirby Studios and come from Google and YouTube.