IF there is one celebration that locals and residents alike are eagerly waiting for, it must be Songkran Festival, also known as the Thai New Year.
While the official period of Songkran is from April 13-15, 2018, each province uses different number of days, and Phuket only celebrates Songkran for one day, on April 13, 2018. This can be a blessing or a curse, depending on how much you love getting splashed by icy cold water on the street.
Initially, Songkran started as the celebration of the rainy season, a season essential after the harvest to start off planting new batches of rice. At the beginning, this only involved the younger generation pouring some water on the hands of their elders as a sign of respect. Somehow, the tradition got lost in translation and now, hundreds of party goers will throw cold bucket of water at you when you wander off the street.
We thought we would share with you a few locations that are perfect to enjoy this year’s festival depending on how involved (and wet!) you want to be:
Fun level: Completely wet!
If you’re looking for one of the craziest experience of Songkran in Phuket, we advise you to visit Bangla Road, in Patong.
The infamous street, usually known for its night time atmosphere, will transform into a giant battlefield, where buckets of water and water guns are used at every corner. Be careful though, as it can be difficult to catch a break, especially if you are located in the middle of the street.
Fun level: Occasionally wet
There are two places I would recommend to those of you who would like to experience Songkran in a more reasonable fashion.
The first one is Saphan Hin, which is where the official Phuket celebration takes place. The park, located on the eastern part of Phuket Town, will guarantee plenty of fun, under the supervision of some paramedics and authorities.
Another more relaxed place to celebrate the festival is Rawai. This village on the western part of Phuket has its fair share of restaurants and bars providing water ammunition for free, but it also offers some areas that are water free that allows you to have a well-deserved rest.
Fun level: Dry?
Well, here is the bad news: if your definition of Songkran is to remain dry from the early morning to the evening, then the only viable option is for you to stay in the comfort of your home. Even a small excursion to a nearby 7-Eleven will be proven to be difficult!
By Nattha Thepbamrung