Where to celebrate Songkran in Bangkok ?
If you're planning to celebrate Songkran in Bangkok, you're in for a crazy experience.
No doubt, it's by far one of the most exciting time of the year to visit Bangkok and if like me you love to party and don't mind getting wet, it's one of this unique event that should absolutely be in your bucket list.
So if you're coming to Bangkok during Songkran, here's everything you need to know about the Thai New Year, where to find the best parties and a few tips to survive Songkran.
Ready ? You're not afraid of buckets full of ice cold water or to be covered with soap ? 😁
Let's go then.
What is Songkran ?
Yes because Songkran is more than the huge country wide water fight we see everywhere nowadays.
Before the festival, Songkran is first and foremost the Thai New Year.
In case you don't know, officially, Thailand use the Thai lunar calendar and not the Gregorian calendar. So for example 2020 is B.E 2563 in Thailand.
The Thai New Year, Songkran is to celebrate the new year according to the Thai calendar.
Part of the original celebration include pouring scented water onto the elders hands to apologize for your sins and ask for their blessing. (more about the tradtion)
Even though that is still true and most Thais celebrate Songkran in a more traditional way, spending time with their family, going to the temple... some big cities like Bangkok have turn it into the massive water fights that we know today.
And that's a really good news if you're into crazy parties !
During Songkran Festival, all the country is on pause and everybody is celebrating.
There is parties in the streets with water fights, a ton of pool parties, huge music festivals and more.
No doubt you're gonna love it !
When is Songkran ?
Songkran is every year in the middle of April, usually around the 13th.
In 2020, Songkran is from Monday 13 April to Wednesday 15 April.
But most parties and celebrations will start on Friday 10 April and continue over the weekend until the 15 April with April 13, 14 and 15 being public holidays in Thailand.
Where to party during Songkran in Bangkok ?
Now let's get to the fun part. Where do we go to party during Songkran ?
You have plenty of options. You've got water fights in streets closed for the occasion like Silom or Khaosan road.
Special Songkran pool parties all across the city. And some of the biggest music festivals in Bangkok take place during that period too.
You've probably seen videos of huge water fights in Bangkok and that might be the reason why you want to come for Songkran this year.
Some streets are closed during the festival and turned into walking streets filled with music and people from all over Thailand (and the world) joining into the biggest water fights you've ever seen.
Silom is with Khaosan where you've got the biggest water fight in the city. The street is closed on both sides, there's stages with shows and people go up and down the street, engaging in raging water fights.
It's intense but if you've never tried before, it's a must do.
Like Silom, Siam is hosting shows and water fights during Songkran. Every years they have different shows and celebrations and it's more family friendly than other streets.
Bangkok most infamous Backpacker street also attract a hectic crowd for Songkran. Expect the street to be packed with travelers and locals fighting with buckets full of ice cold water and blasting music from the top to the bottom of the street.
Soi Cowboy and Nana
Out of the 3 red light districts in Bangkok, 2 of them, Soi Cowboy and Nana also engage in water fights for Songkran. Who said Gogo girls were not fun ?
Famous for its nightlife, RCA doesn't slow down during Songkran either. The street is also closed to the circulation and most bars and clubs get together to turn into a big street festival. RCA also welcome two huge music festivals during Songkran, S2O Festival and Siam Songkran Festival (more on that below).
The street isn't closed like others and you still have traffic but good luck to get through it and stay dry. So if you pass by soi 22 during Sonkgran, make sure you bring your water gun and join the wet t-shirt contest.
For EDM fans, Songkran is one of the best time of the year to visit Bangkok.
Both festivals bring some of the biggest DJs in the world to take over Bangkok with thousands gathering for a massive water fight with blasting dance music for hours.
As water is at the center of the celebration during Songkran you can imagine how popular pool parties are during this period.
It's simple, almost every pool party organizer in Bangkok host special events during this days.
When you usually have 1 or 2 pool party each weekend in Bangkok, during Songkran you have almost 3 to 4 each days.
Of course, the clubs join the celebration too.
That's the only time of the year when you can enter any club in Bangkok with swim shorts and flip flops.
That mean you can go straight from a pool party to a club and party all day and all night during Songkran.
Just remember to bring you ID.
Where to stay in Bangkok for Songkran ?
Book something as close as possible to the action so you don't have to spend too much time looking for taxis and tuk tuks who are in high demands those days.
For more suggestions on where to stay in Bangkok, check that page.
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How to survive Songkran ?
💧Buy a waterproof bag. Throw in there your money, your phone and an ID and you're good to go.
💎Don't wear anything expensive. Swim shorts, a t-shirt, flip flops and sunglasses to protect your eyes from the water and you're ready. Like for the full moon party, don't wear anything you're not ready to lose. Things can (and will) get wild.
🔫Buy a water gun. Because you can't avoid the water fights even if you're trying to. So defend yourself, don't be a bitch and fight !
🎟Book in advance. Especially for hotels and music festivals. Every year, Bangkok is packed with people coming from all over the world to celebrate Songkran and everything sold out really fast.
Start to plan your trip for Songkran
Silom and Khaosan are usually where most of the action happen during Songkran in Bangkok. But all popular spots in the city, including Siam, Central World, Soi Cowboy, Sukhumvit 22 and more are also the theater of massive water fights and parties.
Thanks for reading til the end. I'm sure now you have everything you need to know to take Songkran off your bucket list in style !
To know when and where are each parties for Songkran, I've made a complete list on MojoSons that I'll keep updated as the events are announced.
As usual, if you got any question, please ask in the comments below so it can help everyone.