On November 25th Thailand celebrated Loy Krathong, which literally means ‘to float a basket‘. On the evening of the full moon of the 12th month in the lunar calendar, thai people float a candle raft in the water. The raft is typically lotus shaped and made of banana leaves and containins burning candles, incense sticks, and usually some coins. The floating of the raft has 3 meanings:
- it pays respect to Buddha
- the raft is believed to carry along the sins, grievances and negative feelings of the person floating it, and is meant to bring peace and happiness to the community
- the Goddess of the Water Phra Mae Khongkha is thanked, which is supposed to bring good luck
Alongside this ceremony, many beauty contests are held throughout the country, known as ‘Noppamas Queen Contest‘. Noppamas was the consort of King Ramkhamhaeng (of Sukothai) and floated the very first Krathong, which was so beautiful it moved the King. As a result Krathongs, have a romantic meaning: if two lovers float one together and it stays afloat for as for as they can see, their love will last forever. Further details, my personal experience and pictures are available if you continue reading.
After floating our Krathongs, we had the look at the beauty pageant in our Tambon, which elects the most beautiful full-figured local lady.
While Songkhran is the most fun holiday in Thailand, Loy Krathong is definitely the most beautiful one (I’ve seen so far).