Chiang Mai Events & Festivals
BO SANG UMBRELLA FAIR & SAN KAMPHAENG HANDICRAFTS FESTIVAL
Not far Chiang Mai city, Bo Sang is a famous for handmade and painted umbrellas from mulberry paper and silk. The festival takes place every third weekend in January, with the village streets decorated with beautiful painted umbrellas and lanterns. The event is a celebration of local Lanna culture and craftsmanship, and features handicraft exhibitions, cultural performances, an umbrella procession, as well as a Miss Bo Sang pageant.
BAN TAWAI or TAWAI VILLAGE WOOD CARVING FAIR
This fair features wood carving demonstrations, contests and sales of local handicrafts. It includes local folk performances and a procession that highlights a range of popular northern Thai wood crafts.
CHIANG MAI FLOWER FESTIVAL
The Chiang Mai Flower Festival takes place in February, which is the end of the cool season, when the region’s flowers are in full bloom. The main event of the festival is the flower parade, each carrying a hopeful candidate for the Flower Festival Beauty Pageant. The floats make their way through the city to Nong Buad Hat Park where the pageant is held alongside flower exhibitions, entertainment and a general carnival atmosphere.
MAKHA BUCHA DAY
Makha Bucha commemorates an event which took place on the full moon of the third lunar month when 1,250 disciples miraculously gathered to hear the Lord Buddha give a sermon without prior arrangement. Worshipers circumambulate temples while carrying flowers, lighted candles and joss sticks under the full moon.
CELEBRATION OF THE SONGKRAN “WATER FESTIVEL” IN CHIANGMAI THAILAND
The traditional Thai New Year or Thai call Songkran is a time for visiting the temple and making merit, being together as a family, and water fights! The main dates are the 13th, 14th and 15th of April, but the festivities in Chiang Mai continue for at least a week, making it one of the best places in Thailand to celebrate Songkran, especially with the areas around the city’s moat a lot of fun and water splashing. There are parades, beauty displays and entertainments put on throughout the city.
CHIANG MAI GREAT ARTS AND CULTURE FESTIVAL
The Chiang Mai Great Arts and Culture Festival are held from April 2 – 6 at Ton Payom Market on Suthep Road. The aim of the festival is to promote the image of Chiang Mai as an important center of art and culture and to inspire young people for preservation of local arts and the cultural heritage for future generations.
Usually falling in May, Visakha Bucha takes place on the full moon of the sixth lunar month. This is one of the most important Buddhist holidays, commemorating the birth, enlightenment and death of Buddha, which all miraculously occurred on the same day and month. In Chiang Mai, worshipers make a night time procession up to Doi Suthep temple or landmark of Chiangmai. The procession departs Chiang Mai at sunset and reaches the monastery a few hours before sunrise, covering a distance of about 12km winding up through the forested hillside. At daybreak, the worshippers gather to make merit and pray to the holy relics and statues.
At the Wat Chedi Luang temple, which houses the city pillar or “Lak Muang”, the festival is held over a week and is used to ask the city’s guardian deity to ensure the rainy season arrives on time.
Celebrates the first time Buddha, his teachings and his disciples gathered together. According to Buddhism, all three are needed for wholeness. On this day, Buddhists make merit at temples and sermons are preached.
THE QUEEN’S BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS OR MORTHER DAY IN THAILAND
Mom’, in Thai say ‘Mae’.This is the words might be different in different languages but means same everywhere: absolute care, love, concern and sacrifice.
SALAKPATT OR TAN KUAY SALAK
This age – old festival dates back to Buddha’s life time. The Northerners deem this festival as their most significant and unique celebration. This ceremony takes place between September to November of the year and it is called Tan Kuay Salak, which means “the act of offering to monks”. The offerings for monks are usually anything important for their daily lives and are bought easily. When ceremonial day approaches, villagers prepare their offerings, including food, drinks and so on. They pack all items into bamboo baskets, or hang them on miniature trees. Sometimes, they put money with their offerings too. During that day, all villagers bring their belongings to the temples near their houses and give them to the monks.
When October comes to Chiang Mai, the beauty of flowers beginning to bloom decorates the variety of tourist attractions with splashes of colors and life. The end of the three month of the Buddhist lent period when monks are not permitted to travel. It is the best experience when one has the chance to see and feel the way of the local people live. To experience the traditions and ceremonies of the Chiang Mai people is no exception. Why don’t you, along with discovering the natural beauty of this city of old, also take the time to discover the beauty of its people?
Loy Krathong, Yee Peng, Festival of Lights
Loy Krathong is a colorful festival held every year on the full moon of the twelfth month in the Thai Lunar Calendar.This Thai Festival is held all over the country, but there are particularly beautiful celebrations held in Chiang Mai, Ayutthaya and Sukhothai, where the celebrations take place over several days. Celebrations are now held throughout, as well as parts of Myanmar (Shan State) and Laos.
An important and charming festival all over Thailand, it is a way of asking for blessings from the goddess of the river and to ask forgiveness for polluting the river. Small krathongs made from banana tree stems and leaves are decorated with incense sticks, candles and flowers are floated on rivers, lakes and ponds as an offering. A few strands of hair and nail clippings are usually placed in the krathong. The belief is that by doing this, your troubles will also be carried away.
In Chiang Mai, Loy Krathong is also called “Yi Peng”. In addition to floating krathongs, people in Chiang Mai also launch balloon fire paper lanterns into the sky, also as a way of carrying your troubles away. The many lanterns float up to the sky creates quite a magical scene. The festival also features firework displays, beauty pageants and folk dancing shows.
H.M. THE KING’S BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS
H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the world’s longest reigning monarch, is well beloved and deeply respected by all Thais old and young. The occasion of his royal birthday provides his loyal subjects the opportunity to express their reverence for him. All over the country, buildings and homes are elaborately decorated and the area around the Grand Palace is spectacularly illuminated.
CHIANG MAI FOOD FESTIVAL
Around Tha Pae Gate, this once a year festival provides demonstrations on fruit carving and traditional Thai desserts and many street food for you to try. You must come with private tour Thailand foodie tour.
CHIANG MAI WINTER FAIR
This week-long annual fair is held at the Chiang Mai city hall from the end of December to early January, and features a variety of products for sale, handicrafts, cultural shows, games and plenty of northern Thai delicacies and many street food for you to try at this winter fair. You must come with private tour Thailand foodie tour.