Happy Songkran (New Year) to all of our Thai, Laos, Cambodian and Burmese linguists !
We wish this new year brings you lots of love, joy, and success.
Songkran is a festival celebrated in Thailand and many other surrounding countries including Laos, Cambodia and Burma. The word “Songkran” comes from the Sanskrit word San-kranti (संक्रान्ति) which means moving from one place to another or in astrological terms, the passage of the sun from one astrological sign to another. In this instance, it refers to the passage of the sun from the zodiac sign Pisces to the zodiac sign Aries, which is considered the first sign of the zodiac in Thailand. The dates for Songkran used to be based on the astrological calendar, however, it is now celebrated from the 13th to the 15th of April every year. Songkran festival is celebrated as the traditional New Year in Thailand; it is a combination of fun celebrations and traditional ceremonies. Originally, Thai people used to celebrate the beginning of the New Year by pouring small amounts of blessed water on family members and people in the neighbourhood as a way of paying their respects and wishing good fortune for the coming year. Now, however, the festival is celebrated on a much larger scale and is also a main tourist attraction. In addition to pouring water on each other, people also go to Buddhist temples to pray and make donations. They also visit their elders to pay their respects.
Having celebrated Songkran festival a few times, I would highly recommend tourists to take part in this fun and unique celebration (the biggest water fight you will ever see !). From my experience, the best place to celebrate Songkran is in the beautiful city of Chiang Mai. Swasdee Pee Mai ! สวัสดีปีใหม่ครับ
(Songkran in Chiang Mai few years ago)