Chonburi Province, Festivals. Chon Buri Annual Festival, Wan Lai Festival, Pattaya
Na Kluea Wan Lai Festival & Na Kluea Klong Khao Fair, Songkran Si Maha Racha Festival
& Klong Khao Tradition, Songkran Festival or the Thai New Year, Chon Buri Buffalo
Chon Buri Annual Festival - This fair is held about mid-April during the Songkran
Festival. Phra Phutthasihing, Chon Buri’s principle Buddha image, is put in a procession
around the city. Also organised are cultural shows, exhibitions and stalls offering
various types of products.
Wan Lai Festival - is a Chon Buri merit making day of the seamen on the Thai New
Year during the Songkran Festival, organized during 13-20 April every year. There
is alms-offering to the monks, ceremony of pouring water onto the Buddha’s image,
sand pagoda making, splashing water and local games and sports in Chon Buri. The
areas where the Wan Lai Festival is organized are as follows:
Pattaya–Na Kluea Wan Lai Festival and Na Kluea Kong Khao Fair - are organized on
18-20 April every year at Lan Pho Public Park, Na Kluea and Wat Chai Mongkhon in
South Pattaya. Various activities are organized such as a water pouring ceremony
to seek blessings from the elderly, Wan Lai procession and amusing water splashing
among locals and tourists.
Songkran Si Maha Racha Festival and Kong Khao Tradition - is an ancient festival
of the Chon Buri locals. At present, Si Racha District still preserves this tradition
and organizes it every year, during 19-21 April, to worship the gods who have been
protecting them throughout the year. Activities comprise of the procession led by
the elderly and various organizations in traditional Thai costume, a worship ceremony,
spirit offering ceremony, Kong Khao tradition demonstration, local games, demonstrations,
and sales of traditional desserts and local food.
Koh Phra Sai Wan Lai Festival, Bang Saen - is the festival which has been conducted
by the Saen Suk people from the past. Originally, it was called “Ngan Thambun Wan
Lai”, a gathering of people from various villages to do the merit making in the Songkran
Festival or the Thai New Year Day - taking place on 16-17 April, every year. Monks
from every temple in Saen Suk Sub-district are invited to perform the religious ceremony.
There is merry making, food offering and bathing ceremony. Later, there are activities
of sand pagoda making, water splashing, local games and sports, etc.
Ngan Bun Klang Ban and Phanat Nikhom Basketwork - are traditions that have been
passed on for a long period of time of the Phanat Nikhom people. They are organized
on Friday, Saturday and Sunday in the first week of May or the Thai 6th lunar month.
The locals will bring food, offer them to the monks, and dedicate the merit to the
guardian spirits, enemies from a former life, the deceased relatives, as well as,
to drive out bad things, to ask for rain during the season and to wish for abundant
food and plants. After the religious ceremony, there is lunch, local games and a
demonstration of Phanat Nikhom basketry making.
Chon Buri Buffalo Race - This is a long-established celebration of this most useful
animal of Thai farmers. A fun-filled event, it is held not only in Chon Buri itself
but also in Ban Bueng and Nong Yai districts. The beasts of burden are dressed outrageously
or with admirable creativity by owners depending on their imagination. Assembled
in the courtyard in front of the town hall, the buffaloes partake in racing, or take
part in physical fitness and fashion contests.