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Songkran: Thailand’s New Year Festival

The Songkran Festival celebrates the traditional Thai New Year from April 13-15.

The word Songkran comes from a Sanskrit phrase meaning “passage of the sun.”

It is a time for house cleaning, family gatherings, visiting temples, and throwing water.

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Thailand’s Water Festival

Water is an important resource to Thailand, needing plenty of it for the rice they grow, so it makes sense that it plays a major role in the Songkran celebration.

It is a symbol of washing away the old year to prepare for the new year.

songkran festival

Traditionally, it was customary to splash water on family members and elders to seek good fortune.

Today, it has grown into a major event with buckets of water, water hoses, and super soakers used to celebrate. Songkran is known as the biggest water festival in the world.

Celebrations take place in provinces across the country and include events such as parades, beauty pageants with contestants dressed in traditional Thai dress, games, food vendors, flag ceremonies, dances, boat races, and much more!

DIY Songkran Activities – from BKK Kids

Sand stupas, water gun painting, and more!

Books About Thailand

Toy is from Thailand

Toy is from Thailand – a young boy named Toy introduces readers to his culture.

The Umbrella Queen – a young girl named Noot paints from her heart and receives an unexpected honor.

the life of rice

The Life of Rice:  From Seedling to Supper – follow a photographer to Thailand as he explains the growing stages of rice and its importance in Thai culture.

Peek! Thai book

Peek!  A Thai Hide-and-Seek  – Papa encounters a variety of animals as he searches for his daughter during a game of hide-and-seek.

Hush! A Thai Lullaby

Hush! A Thai Lullaby – a mother asks the animals to be quiet for her sleeping baby. “Hush! Elephant, elephant, don’t come shrieking, can’t you see that baby’s sleeping? Elephant, elephant, don’t you cry, my baby’s sleeping right near by.”

Explore Thailand Further

Our Thailand Profile page includes a detailed map, infographic, photo gallery, informational video, learning activities, and more.

Our Thailand Research Project guides students as they investigate the geography and culture of Thailand. Great for an independent learning center, a small group cooperative learning experience, or a whole class activity.

Thailand Research Report