Sarah and I recently headed out to Thailand for a bit of sun and oh boy did we get sun. 37 degrees and 80%+ humidity! It was hot. Seriously hot. T-shirt permanently stuck to your back hot… you get the picture.
Our arrival into Thailand on the 12th April couldn’t have been any better as the 13th April was Thailand’s new year which presented a day of festivities via their “Songkran Festival”.
At our hotel, the Bhandari Hotel and Spa in Khao Lak, the day around the pool started with the staff entering the pool area carrying a statue of Buddha, beating a rhythm on a drum and dancing. This was accompanied by bathing Buddha in water and applying a face paint to people’s faces.
The guests joined in this ritual and really got into the spirit of things.
The staff on the other hand were somewhat content with chasing down the female staff at the hotel and throwing them in the various pools of water around the hotel, fully clothed in their work attire which was hilarious to watch!
Water fights in the street
Before heading out to Thailand we read that Songkran would result in water fights in the street. Not only that but no one was safe from it, the drier and more touristy you looked the more likely you were to get soaked and they weren’t lying!
Before even leaving our hotel the staff had hit us with a few buckets of water which in all honesty, was incredibly refreshing in the heat of the day! As we headed up to the main road in Khao Lak, the extent of the festivities became clear with all shops closed for the day, replaced by dustbins of water lining the streets, every person with a water gun or bucket and soaking any soul who dared to venture nearby! No one was safe!
Walking up to the main road, every other car was a pickup with people riding in the back with buckets of water soaking motorcyclists, pedestrians and people in other vehicles, it was crazy but absolutely incredible fun for both the tourists and the locals!
If you’re heading to Thailand at this time of year and read about the water fights and new year festival, I would urge you not to shy away from it and push back your holiday but instead embrace it! The atmosphere in the town was one of celebration, happiness and sheer fun for everyone.
So what are you waiting for, grab yourself a bucket and soak your nearest neighbour! Just remember to put your phone in a waterproof case as no one will show you any mercy!