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Archive for the 'Thai Holidays' Category

Celebrating the Songkran Festival in Thailand

Songkran Day, otherwise known as the Songkran Festival or Songkran Water Festival, is a unique Thai tradition that takes place in early spring each year. In this article, you’ll learn what the Songkran Festival is all about, how Thai people celebrate this holiday, and more!

Let’s get started.

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1. What is Songkran Day?

The Songkran holiday in Thailand is a three-day celebration period. During the Songkran Festival, Thai people are able to get much-needed rest and relaxation from work or school, as well as plenty of play-time! This holiday is also a period of blessings and a time to ทำบุญ (tham-bun), or “make merit.”

The Songkran Festival is a tradition that is not only present in Thailand but also in other Southeast Asian countries such as Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, and Sri Lanka. It is presumed that this festival was influenced by the Holi festival in India.

2. When is Songkran?

Sprinkling Water

Each year, the Songkran date is from April 13 to April 15.

3. How is the Songkran Festival Celebrated?

Because the Songkran Festival is a long holiday, many Thai people go back to their hometown to visit family and old friends.

There are a number of events and traditions that take place during the Thai Songkran Festival. As mentioned earlier, this is a time to make merit. Many common events during this holiday period include acts of service (like saving animals that are trapped), charity operations, and asking blessings from elders. Many people also เข้าวัด (khâo-wát), or “go to the temple,” and give food to the monks.

During the Songkran Festival, Thailand also hosts a beauty pageant. In the Miss Songkran beauty pageant, Thai women from ages eighteen to twenty-five wear Thai dresses, express their personality, and try to answer important questions. The winner for each province is considered a lady capable of promoting tourism in that province.

Perhaps the tradition you’re most familiar with is that of playing with น้ำ (nám), or water. Throughout Thailand, people will splash or sprinkle each other with water, shoot people with water guns, and also สรงน้ำพระ (sóng-náam-phrá), or “bathe the Buddha statue.” This is because many Thais believe that splashing water onto others will rid them of bad luck and other bad things. In some places, people also rub chalk in each other’s faces.

4. Another Important Holiday

Do you know what other Thai holiday falls on April 13?

Since the reign of King Rama V, April 1 had been designated as the ปีใหม่ไทย (phii-mài-thai), or Thai New Year. Later, in 1940, the date of New Year’s Day was changed to the international day of January 1. However, as Thai people in those days were still used to New Year’s Day being in April, April 13 was designated the first day of the Songkran holiday period, as well as the traditional Thai New Year.

    → Did you know that some people in Thailand also observe the Chinese New Year?

5. Essential Vocabulary for Songkran Day

An Elephant

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this article? Here’s a list of the most important words and phrases for Songkran!

  • น้ำ (nám) — “water”
  • ปีใหม่ไทย (phii-mài-thai) — “Thai New Year”
  • คำอวยพร (kham-uuai-phaawn) — “bless”
  • ทำบุญ (tham-bun) — “make merit”
  • รดน้ำดำหัว (rót-náam-dam-húua) — “water sprinkling”
  • ปืนฉีดน้ำ (bpuuen-chìit-náam) — “water gun”
  • น้ำอบ (náam-òp) — “Thai perfume”
  • สรงน้ำพระ (sóng-náam-phrá) — “bathe the Buddha statue”
  • เข้าวัด (khâo-wát) — “go to the temple”
  • สาดน้ำ (sàat-náam) — “throw water”
  • เทศกาลสงกรานต์ (thêet-sà-gaan sǒng-graan) — “Royal Songkran Festival”
  • ขบวนแห่ (khà-buuan-hàae) — “parade”

To hear the pronunciation of each word, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Thai Songkran Day vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about the Songkran Water Festival with us, and that you were able to take away some valuable cultural information.

What did you think about this holiday? Is there a similar celebration in your own country? We look forward to hearing from you in the comments!

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Trut Chin: The Chinese New Year Festival in Thailand!

The Chinese New Year celebration in Thailand is an important day for the ไทยเชื้อสายจีน (thai-chúuea-săai-jiin), or “Thai-Chinese,” population. Thailand during the Chinese New Year may put one in mind of Christmastime in many Western cultures with all of its colorful festivities, warm family time, and gift-giving.

In this article, you’ll learn all about this traditional holiday, how the Thai-Chinese celebrate it, and more facts about the Thai-Chinese population in Thailand.

At ThaiPod101.com, it’s our aim to ensure that every aspect of your language-learning journey is both fun and informative—starting with this article!

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1. What is the Chinese New Year?

A Thai Chinese Woman

Trut Chin is the traditional Chinese New Year in China and for Chinese communities around the world. It’s the first day of the Chinese lunar month, which is regarded as the beginning of the spring season. Trut Chin was brought into Thailand in the late Ayutthaya Period, and it has been continuously celebrated since then.

Thailand is known for having a large ethnic Chinese population, meaning that there are plenty of Chinese New Year celebrations in the most Chinese-dense cities. However, Thailand doesn’t recognize the Chinese New Year as a public holiday.

The Chinese New Year celebration in Thailand is divided into three days, each with a specific agenda. The main focus of this holiday is to get rid of bad luck and invite good luck into the New Year. There’s also an emphasis on respecting one’s elders and ancestors.

2. Dates for the Chinese New Year Festival in Thailand

Chinese Astrology Cycle with Chinese Zodiacs

Because the date of Chinese Lunar New Year’s Day in Thailand is based on the lunar calendar, the date of this holiday varies from year to year on the Gregorian calendar. For your convenience, here’s a list of this holiday’s date for the next ten years.

  • 2020: January 25
  • 2021: February 12
  • 2022: February 1
  • 2023: January 22
  • 2024: February 10
  • 2025: January 29
  • 2026: February 17
  • 2027: February 6
  • 2028: January 26
  • 2029: February 13

Do you know what the twelve Chinese zodiac signs are? Check out this list to learn how to say them in Thai!

3. Traditions & Celebrations for Chinese New Year

To celebrate Chinese New Year, Thailand divides the holiday into three different days. About one week before the Chinese New Year, Chinese-Thai people take the opportunity to clean up their houses. They believe that this act will help drive away bad spirits from households in order to start the New Year with goodness and purity. Doors and windows are decorated with red ornaments and red paper with characters written on them representing Longevity, Wealth, and Prosperous Life.

Pay Day, Worship Day & Travel Day

The first day of Chinese New Year’s celebrations is called “Pay Day.” Two days prior to Chinese New Year is when Chinese-Thai people go out to buy fresh food, snacks, and fruits to prepare for the holiday. Over this period, the Yaowarat market, where most Chinese-Thai people in Thailand live, is busy all day long. Moreover, Chinese companies in Thailand take this opportunity to give “red envelopes,” or แต๊ะเอีย (dtáe-iia), to their employees on this day.

On the second day (Worship Day) of the Chinese New Year festival, Thailand celebrates what is considered the last day of the year by Chinese people. On this day, Chinese-Thais wake up early to cook food, or อาหาร (aa-hăan). When they finish, they bring this food, along with other snacks and fruits, to worship ancestors and deities. In Thailand, Chinese New Year food often includes ขนมเข่ง (khà-nǒm-khèng), or “nian gao,” which is also called Chinese New Year’s cake.

Afterward, they will burn silver and gold paper, or กระดาษ (grà-dàat), in order to wish for a windfall and greater fortune, leading to a peaceful life. In the end, they light ประทัด (bprà-thát), or “firecrackers,” to drive away bad luck.

The third day is called “Travel Day,” which is also Chinese New Year’s Day. On this day, Chinese-Thai people dress beautifully in red, or สีแดง (sǐi-daaeng) and visit relatives to pay their respects. Another tradition on this day is to give a “red envelope” or New Year money to children as a symbol of good fortune and advancement in their career.

Chinese New Year in Bangkok, Thailand

While there are several places celebrating Trut Chin around Thailand, the Chinese New Year in Bangkok, Thailand, has one of the largest celebrations. Here, the Chinese and the Thais of Chinese descent celebrate it on Yaowarat Road, which is the largest Chinese community in Thailand.

Each year for the Chinese New Year celebration, Thailand closes this road and decorates it with thousands of red lanterns. There are many performances from China and traditional Chinese performances. There are also celebrations with firecrackers, the การเชิดสิงโต (gaan-chôoet-síng-dtoo), or “Lion Dance,” the Dragon Dance, and acrobats. Shops and restaurants are opened for the public. It’s a very interesting festival, indeed.

4. Ethnic Chinese Population in Thailand

Lion Dance for Chinese New Year

Do you know how many Thai Chinese people there are in Thailand?

In 2012, it was estimated that around 9.4 million ethnic Chinese in Thailand, which is around fourteen percent of the total population. Thailand is the country to which the most Chinese people have immigrated, and these people usually live together in groups in major cities.

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for the Thai Lunar New Year

Ready to review some of the Thai vocabulary words we covered in this article? Here are the essential vocabulary words you should know for the Chinese New Year in Thailand!

  • วันตรุษจีน (wan-dtrùt-jiin) — “Lunar New Year”
  • อั่งเปา (àng-bpao) — “red envelope”
  • ทอง (thaawng) — “gold”
  • ดวงจีน (duuang-jiin) — “Chinese astrology
  • เยาวราช (yao-wá-râat) — “Chinatown”
  • บรรพบุรุษ (ban-phá-bù-rùt) — “ancestor”
  • ประทัด (bprà-thát) — “firecracker”
  • ไทยเชื้อสายจีน (thai-chúuea-săai-jiin) — “Thai-Chinese”
  • สวดมนต์ (sùuat-mon) — “pray”
  • ขนมเข่ง (khà-nǒm-khèng) — “nian gao”
  • การเชิดสิงโต (gaan-chôoet-síng-dtoo) — “Lion Dance”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Thai Lunar New Year vocabulary list! For more vocabulary-learning fun, watch the video below:

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about the Chinese New Year holiday in Thailand with us and gained some new insight into Thai culture. How do you celebrate the New Year in your country? Let us know in the comments!

If you’re interested in learning more about the unique Thai culture and language, you may find the following pages useful:

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Wan-rát-thà-tham-má-nuun: Celebrating Thai Constitution Day

In 1932, Thailand’s Constitution was created and signed into effect during a time of great change in the country. In this article, you’ll learn about what role King Prajadhipok (King Rama VII) played in its creation, an interesting law you’ll find within the Constitution, and how Thai people celebrate Thai Constitution Day.

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make every aspect of your language-learning journey both fun and informative. What better way than by delving into the roots of modern-day Thailand?

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1. What is Constitution Day?

In Thailand, Constitution Day is the day that commemorates the promulgation of the first permanent Constitution of Thailand in 1932. The Constitution was signed by King Rama VII, who acknowledged the change from absolute monarchy to a democratic form of government with the King as Head of State under the Constitution.

Judge Holding Gavel

1- History of Thailand’s Constitution

Thailand’s Constitution originated from a political transition in 1932. The transition was a result of the First World War, which caused worldwide economic depression and also affected Thailand.

As a result, the government had to depose some government officials and legislate new laws to collect taxes, including property tax and land tax, from citizens. As this caused discontent among military officers and the general public, King Rama VII decided to promulgate a Constitution to be used as a basis for the laws in Thailand.

Consequently, on Constitution Day each year, people will make merit for King Rama VII.

2- An Interesting Law

Today, we’re going to introduce an interesting Thai law in accordance with the current Constitution.

One such law is that Thai citizens who are eighteen years or older are responsible for exercising their right to vote for their representatives in the political system.

Not voting without proper reasons may deprive the person of certain rights, depending on the law on each case. If the person hasn’t exercised their right to vote many times over, he or she may lose their right to apply as a candidate for membership in the House of Representatives election or the Senator election.

In other words, the person may lose the right to become Thailand’s Prime Minister, as a Prime Minister has to have been a previous member of the House of Representatives.

2. When is Thailand’s Constitution Day?

Thai Flag

Each year, people celebrate this public holiday in Thailand on December 10.

3. Constitution Day in Thailand: Traditions & Events

Before Constitution Day, educational institutions often hold an exhibition about the origin of the day as well as the content of the current Constitution.

Representatives from government agencies and private companies, school students, university students, and the general public will gather in front of the statue of King Rama VII and place a wreath to pay homage to the King, who changed the political system of the country. He brought about democracy in Thailand, giving more rights to citizens to take part in politics.

As Constitution Day is a public holiday, the government holds a “Thai Kids Love the Parliament” activity in which youth representatives have a chance to interview and exchange knowledge about the Constitution directly with law experts. This allows Thai youth and the general public to gain a correct understanding of the Thai Constitution. The Prime Minister is the leader of the opening ceremony.

4. How Many Thai Constitutions?

People Celebrating

To date, how many Constitutions of Thailand have there been?

The answer: There have been eighteen Constitutions of Thailand!

The current Constitution is the 2007 Constitution of Thailand. This is the first Constitution that, after the draft was completed and approved by the National Legislative Assembly, was shown to the general public and approved through a referendum. As the majority of people agreed with the Constitution, it was declared to be in effect and has been in use until now.

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for Constitution Day in Thailand

People Making Plans

Here’s some Thai vocabulary for you to memorize before Constitution Day!

  • สนับสนุน (sà-nap-sà-nǔn) — “support”
  • ประชาชน (bprà-chaa-chon) — “people”
  • เปลี่ยนแปลง (bplìian-bplaaeng) — “change”
  • รัฐศาสตร์ (rát-thà-sàat) — “politics”
  • วันรัฐธรรมนูญ (wan-rát-thà-tham-má-nuun) — “Constitution Day”
  • การปกครอง (gaan-bpòk-khraawng) — “administration”
  • อำนาจ (am-nâat) — “authority”
  • กฎหมาย (gòt-măai) — “law”
  • รัฐบาล (rát-thà-baan) — “government”
  • ประชาธิปไตย (bprà-chaa-thíp-bpà-dtai) — “democracy”
  • ภาษี (paa-sǐi) — “tax”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to visit our Thai Constitution Day vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

What are your thoughts on Thai Constitution Day? Does your country have a Constitution as well, and if so, do you have a day of commemoration for it? Let us know in the comments!

Learning about a country’s culture and history is an exciting and enriching aspect of trying to master its language. If you’re interested in learning more about Thailand and her people, you may find the following pages on ThaiPod101.com useful:

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How to Celebrate Chulalongkorn Day in Thailand

King Chulalongkorn is a much-loved and respected figure in Thailand, so each year, Thai people celebrate Chulalongkorn Day. In this article, you’ll learn why this king is held in such high regard, all the good he did for Thailand, and how the country goes about remembering King Chulalongkorn.

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make every aspect of your language-learning journey both fun and informative!

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1. What is Chulalongkorn Day?

On Chulalongkorn Day, Thailand remembers and honors King Rama V, also known as King Chulalongkorn. This king is one of the most beloved and respected figures in the history of Thailand, known for his great favors to the country.

King Chulalongkorn & His Accomplishments for Thailand

Chulalongkorn the Great ruled the country of Siam, now Thailand, for forty-two years during his life, from 1853 until 1910. He became king at the age of fifteen, so a regent helped him rule during the early years of his reign.

One of King Chulalongkorn’s greatest feats for Thailand was the abolition of slavery. At the time, a slavery crisis plagued the country, where one generation of slaves would simply give birth to yet another. The only way to become free once a slave was to pay your way out. King Chulalongkorn abolished slavery in hopes to give everyone equal rights, and to avoid a Civil War-like situation, such as the one experienced in the United States. It’s worth mentioning that a European tutor by the name of Anna Leonowens greatly influenced him while teaching him about Western culture.

This influence further led King Chulalongkorn to start implementing bits and pieces of Western culture into Thailand’s own system. Two famous examples are a privy council and the Royal Military Academy.

All of this is only the tip of the iceberg. King Chulalongkorn did so much good for the country, it’s no wonder that on Chulalongkorn Memorial Day, Thailand honors and celebrates their “beloved king.”

2. King Chulalongkorn Memorial Day Date

Chulalongkorn Day Statue

Each year, Thailand celebrates Chulalongkorn Day on October 23. This is the date on which he passed away.

3. Chulalongkorn Day Observances & Traditions

People Traveling

Remembering King Chulalongkorn is the focus of this holiday. On Chulalongkorn Memorial Day, Bangkok, along with the rest of Thailand, holds various observances to remember the king.

After the king passed away, civil servants, merchants, the rich, and the general public were all grateful of his grace. Therefore, they donated money to build a statue to represent the king. The statue was built as if the king was riding a horse, hence being called the “Equestrian Statue.”

On King Chulalongkorn Day each year, people will bring flowers to pay respect and pay homage to the king, to remind themselves of his grace, as well as offer food to monks while devoting merit to the king. Moreover, there are exhibitions about the king’s stories and activities within several government agencies, schools, and universities to allow younger generations to continue to commemorate his grace.

4. Saving Thailand from Colonization

In the past, many Western countries invaded and colonized Asian countries. During his reign, King Rama V gave up some areas of Thailand in exchange for the compromise of maintaining the country’s independence. In order not to lose more land, he started to establish a relationship with Russia. He also sent his sons to study abroad to build alliances. Since then, Thailand has never lost its land to any countries.

5. Essential Vocabulary for Chulalongkorn Memorial Day

Man Holding Globe in Hand

Here’s the essential vocabulary to know for Chulalongkorn Day in Thailand!

  • การไปรษณีย์ (gaan bprai-sà-nii) — “post office”
  • รถไฟ (rót-fai) — “train”
  • โทรศัพท์ (thoo-rá-sàp) — “telephone”
  • วันปิยมหาราช (wan-bpì-yá-má-hǎa-râat) — “Chulalongkorn Day”
  • รัชกาลที่ 5 (rát-chá-gaan thîi-hâa) — “King Rama V”
  • การเลิกทาส (gaan lôoek-thâat) — “abolitionism”
  • ลัทธิจักรวรรดินิยม (lát-thí jàk-grà-wàt-ní-yom) — “imperialism”
  • เสด็จสวรรคต (sà-dèt sà-wăn-khót) — “die”
  • การปกครอง (gaan-bpòk-khraawng) — “administration”
  • สภากาชาดไทย (sà-phâa-gaa-châat-thai) — “The Thai Red Cross”
  • โทรเลข (thoo-rá-lêek) — “telegraph”
  • ประพาส (bprà-phâas) — “travel”
  • การบริการของรัฐ (gaan baaw-rí-gaan khǎawng rát) — “government service”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, alongside relevant images, check out our Chulalongkorn Day vocabulary list!

How ThaiPod101 Can Help You Learn About Thai Culture

We hope you enjoyed learning about Chulalongkorn Day with us, and that you learned something new. Is there a holiday in your country that celebrates a beloved figure? Tell us about it in the comments; we look forward to hearing from you!

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Thailand Language Day: Celebrating the Thai Language

If we were to ask you, “What language is spoken in Thailand?” you would, of course, answer “Thai!” But did you know Thailand has a day set aside to celebrate the Thai language and encourage its use?

Thailand Language Day is a unique facet of Thai culture, and you’ll see why once you’ve read up on its history. What could make your Thai language-learning more meaningful than discovering its history and significance in Thailand today?

In this article, we’ll be going over some information on the history of modern Thai written language and its journey as the national language of Thailand, as well as celebrations that take place on Thai Language Day (including learning how to make Thai desserts!).

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make this learning adventure both fun and informative!

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1. What is National Thai Language Day?

King Rama IX created Thai Language Day to promote and raise awareness among Thai people of the value and importance of the national language, and to help preserve it in Thailand forever.

In the past, the Thai language was adapted from the Cambodian language. But in 1283, King Ramkhamhaeng decided this was not good enough because the Thai language is tonal. He had an initiative to modify Thai characters for easier writing and to add high and low tone symbols to match with pronunciation in the language. These new characters are adapted from Balinese and Sanskrit languages and have contributed immensely toward the success of the Thai language.

Note that Thai is a language that incorporates new slang from time to time. Currently, there’s popular slang such as “The Vance Kids” which refers to teenagers who like to race motorcycles at night. This term is derived from the sound a motorcycle makes when accelerating.

2. When is Thai Language Day?

Many Hoisted Flags

Each year, Thailand celebrates its national language day on July 29.

3. Reading Practice: National Thai Language Day Celebrations

People Holding Speech Bubbles

Do you know how Thailand celebrates its language day? Read the Thai text below to find out, and check your reading skills against the English translation directly below it.

เนื่องในวันภาษาไทยแห่งชาติ เพื่อเป็นการอนุรักษ์ภาษาไทยและให้เยาวชนสามารถใช้ภาษาไทยได้อย่างถูกต้อง กิจกรรมยอดนิยมตามสถานศึกษาคือ การจัดประกวดการเขียนเรียงความพร้อมกับการอ่านออกเสียง เพื่อชิงทุนการศึกษา เพื่อเป็นการกระตุ้นให้เยาวชนหันมาใช้รูปประโยคที่ถูกต้อง รวมไปถึงการอ่านออกเสียงที่ถูกต้อง โดยเฉพาะการออกเสียง ร และเสียงควบกล้ำ

ไม่เพียงแต่การใช้ภาษาไทยเท่านั้น ตามหน่วยราชการต่างๆก็จะอนุญาตให้ข้าราชการสามารถแต่งกายชุดไทยมาทำงานได้ มีการจัดกิจกรรมเพื่ออนุรักษ์วัฒนธรรมไทยขึ้นในหลายรูปแบบ ทั้งการสาธิตการทำขนมไทยโบราณ การร่วมกิจกรรมการละเล่นพื้นบ้าน รวมไปถึงการแสดงนาฏศิลป์ไทย

On National Thai Language Day, to preserve the usage of Thai language and promote proper usage to young people, popular activities held in educational institutes include competitions on essay writing and oral reading competitions to win the scholarships. This is to encourage young people to use the correct forms of sentences and correct pronunciation, especially on the ‘r’ sound and diphthongs.

Today, not only the usage of Thai language is encouraged, but some government officials are also allowed to wear Thai costumes to work. There are also activities to preserve Thai culture, such as an ancient dessert cooking demonstration, Thai folk plays, and Thai dance shows.

4. Composition of the Thai Alphabet

Do you know the composition of the Thai alphabet?

There are forty-four letters, twenty-one vowels, and four consonants. Thai characters are arranged from left to right, with vowels placed in front, above, below, and at the back. Each word is formed by mixing letters like in English, but there are symbols to control the tone of each word in Thai.

You can learn more about the Thai alphabet and how it works by reading some of our relevant content.

5. Useful Vocabulary for National Thai Language Day

Thai Alphabet

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for National Thai Language Day!

  • ภาษา (phaa-sǎa) — “language”
  • คำ (kham) — “word”
  • ตัวอักษร (dtuua àk-sǎawn) — “alphabet”
  • ภาษาราชการ (phaa-săa râat-chá-gaan) — “official language”
  • เสียงสูงต่ำ (sĭiang sǔung dtàm) — “intonation”
  • พยัญชนะ (phá-yan-chá-ná) — “consonant”
  • สระ (sà-rà) — “vowel”
  • วรรณยุกต์ (wan-ná-yúk) — “intonation marks”
  • คำศัพท์ (kham sàp) — “vocabulary”
  • ภาษาถิ่น (phaa-săa thìn) — “dialect”
  • สำเนียง (săm-niiang) — “accent”

To hear each vocabulary word pronounced, check out our National Thai Language Day vocabulary list!

Conclusion

We hope you enjoyed learning about National Thai Language Day, and that you’re more excited than ever to continue in your Thai studies. At ThaiPod101.com, we provide an array of fun and practical learning tools, including more insightful blog posts like this one and free Thai vocabulary lists. You can also discuss lessons with fellow students or reach out for help on our community forums!

While Thai isn’t an easy language to learn, know that your hard work and determination will pay off. You’ll be speaking, writing, and reading Thai like a native before you know it, and ThaiPod101 will be here with you each step of the way.

Before you go, let us know in the comments if your country has a day to celebrate its national language. We’re curious. 😉

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Royal Ploughing Ceremony in Sanam Luang, Thailand

In Sanam Luang, Thailand, the Thai Royal Ploughing Ceremony takes place each year. When it comes to the Royal Ploughing Ceremony, Bangkok may consider this the most important of all Sanam Luang events, considering the high place agriculture in Thailand holds.

In learning about this Thai ceremony, you’re gaining a deeper understanding of what agriculture in Thailand looks like, and of Thai culture as a whole. Any language learner can tell you that having sound knowledge of your target language’s country is the most important step in the journey.

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make this learning experience an invaluable one, both fun and insightful. Let’s get started and delve into this Royal Ploughing Day!

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1. What is Royal Ploughing Ceremony Day?

The Royal Ploughing Ceremony, which is a traditional ceremony in Thailand, is held to strengthen the morale of the farmers and to recognize the importance of agriculture to the Thai economy. Rice is considered the main economic plant of the country.

2. When is the Royal Ploughing Ceremony?

Sowing Seeds

The date of the Thai Royal Ploughing Ceremony varies by year, as it’s determined by the royal astrologer. That said, it always takes place in May. In 2019 and 2020, it will take place on May 13.

3. Reading Practice: Thai Customs on Ploughing Day

Plowing a Field

How is the Royal Ploughing Ceremony celebrated? Read the Thai text below to find out, and find the English translation directly below it.

ก่อนวันพืชมงคล 1 วันจะต้องมีพิธีสงฆ์เกิดขึ้นก่อน พระสงฆ์จะทำการเจริญพระพุทธมนต์ตามหลักของพุทธศาสนาเพื่อทำขวัญแก่เมล็ดพืชต่างๆให้มีความอุดมสมบูรณ์ ประกอบไปด้วย เมล็ดข้าวเปลือกและเมล็ดพืชต่างๆประมาณ 40 ชนิด รวมไปถึงพันธุ์ข้าวพระราชทานซึ่งปลูกในพระราชวัง เมล็ดพืชเหล่านี้จะใช้เพื่อเป็นข้าวเปลือกสำหรับใช้ในพิธีในวันถัดไปและแจกจ่ายให้เกษตรกรและประชาชนในจังหวัดต่างๆเพื่อเป็นขวัญกำลังใจ

ในวันประกอบพิธี จะจัด ณ ท้องสนามหลวงเป็นประจำทุกปี โดยจะเชิญพระโค 2 ตัวที่ถูกคัดเลือก มาไถพื้นดินรอบพื้นที่จำนวน 3 รอบ ในระหว่างการไถ เมล็ดพันธุ์ข้าวจะถูกหว่านไปรอบๆด้วย หลังจากนั้นจะนำอาหารและเครื่องดื่มมาป้อนให้แก่พระโค ประกอบไปด้วย ถั่ว เมล็ดข้าว ข้าวโพด งา หญ้า น้ำ และเหล้า เมื่อพระโคกินของสิ่งใด โหรหลวงจะทำนายถึงความอุดมสมบูรณ์ของพืชผลในอนาคตตามสิ่งที่พระโคกิน ภายหลังเสร็จสิ้นพิธีแล้ว จะเปิดโอกาสให้ประชาชนทั่วไปเข้าไปเก็บเมล็ดข้าวที่ถูกหว่านในพิธีไปเก็บรักษา เพื่อเป็นมงคลแก่พืชที่จะทำการเพาะปลูกต่อไป

พิธีนี้แม้จะจัดที่กรุงเทพเท่านั้น แต่ในจังหวัดอื่นๆก็จะมีการจัดงานเพื่อเกษตรกรในหลายรูปแบบ มีทั้งงานให้รางวัลเกษตรกรดีเด่นประจำปี งานประกวดพันธุ์ข้าวจากเกษตรกรในพื้นที่ งานสนับสนุนเกษตรกรผู้ขาดแคลนเงินทุน อีกทั้งงานสัมมนาวิชาการ ให้ความรู้ที่เป็นประโยชน์ในการเพาะปลูกต่อเกษตรกร เพื่อเตรียมตัวกับฤดูกาลเพาะปลูกต่อไป

One day before the Royal Ploughing Ceremony, there is a monk ceremony. Buddhist monks will perform according to the principles of Buddhism to bless seeds from each plant for abundance. These are paddy seeds and forty other types of seeds including the Royal rice which is grown in the palace. These seeds are used as grain in the ceremony the next day and to distribute to farmers and people in each province to boost their morale.

The ceremony is held at Sanam Luang annually. Two steers are invited to plow the land surrounding the area. Seeds are thrown around while the cows are plowing. Then, food and drink, including bean, rice, corn, sesame, grass, water, and liquor, are fed to the cows. After the steers eat these items, the royal astrologer predicts the abundance of crops in the future, according to what was eaten. After the ceremony, the general public is allowed to keep the grain sown in the ceremony as a blessing for their next crop.

Even though this ceremony is held only in Bangkok, other provinces also organize various events for farmers such as the Farmers of the Year award, rice contest from the local farmers, an event supporting farmers who lack funding, and a seminar to provide useful knowledge to farmers to prepare for the next planting season.

4. Steers and Important Crops

There is a belief that steers used in the royal ceremony must possess very good characteristics, which are good ears, good eyes, strength, and straight horns. Both cows must be of the same color. There are only two colors of steer chosen, namely cotton white and sugar brown. They must also be male and castrated.

There are four major types of plants, including rice, rubber, tapioca, and sugarcane. Rice is the most grown plant in Thailand, and it takes only four months to achieve a crop. Moreover, Thailand exports most of the sticky rice in the world. Its important market is in the ASEAN region and Asia.

5. Useful Vocabulary for the Thai Royal Ploughing Ceremony

A Water Buffalo

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for the Royal Ploughing Ceremony in Thailand!

  • ข้าว (khàao) — “rice”
  • เกษตรกร (gà-sèet-dtrà-gaawn) — “farmer”
  • เกษตรกรรม (gà-sèet-dtrà-gam) — “agriculture”
  • วันพืชมงคล (wan-phûuet-mong-khon) — “Royal Ploughing Ceremony Day”
  • วัว (wuua) — “cattle”
  • ควาย (khwaai) — “water buffalo
  • หว่าน (wàan) — “sow”
  • สนามหลวง (sà-nǎam-lǔuang) — “Sanam Luang”
  • ไถนา (thăi-naa) — “plow a field”
  • ข้าวเปลือก (khàao-bplùuak) — “paddy”
  • ความอุดมสมบูรณ์ (khwaam ù-dom-sǒm-buun) — “fertility”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, check out our Royal Ploughing Ceremony Day vocabulary list. Here, you’ll find each word accompanied by an audio file of its pronunciation.

Conclusion

We hope that you learned something today and took away something valuable for your Thai studies. What do you think of the Royal Ploughing Ceremony Day in Thailand? Does your country have a holiday for farmers or agriculture? Let us know in the comments!

To learn more about Thai culture and the language, visit us at ThaiPod101.com for all the tools you need to master your target language! From free vocabulary lists to insightful blog posts on an array of topics, there’s something here for every Thai learner. You can also talk with fellow Thai learners on our community forum, or upgrade to Premium Plus to take advantage of our MyTeacher program.

Your journey to mastering Thai may be difficult and long, but know that your hard work will pay off. And ThaiPod101.com will be here with you every step of the way!

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What is Chakri Memorial Day in Thailand?

What is Chakri Day in Thailand, and why should you learn about it?

During Chakri Day, Thailand royal family members and the rest of the population take time to commemorate the Chakri Dynasty’s first king, King Rama I. It’s a day to celebrate and remember the peace and overall success that King Rama I brought to Thailand, including his decision to move its capital to Bangkok.

Learning about Chakri Day’s meaning will give you a good look at Thailand’s past, which in turn offers you insight into the country’s culture today. And as many language-learners can vouch for, understanding a country’s culture is a vital step in mastering the language.

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make this learning experience both fun and informative as we delve into the specifics of the Chakri Day holiday.

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1. What is Chakri Memorial Day?

This is the day to commemorate the grace of King Rama I who ascended the throne and moved the capital to Bangkok. This day is regarded as the anniversary of the Chakri Dynasty.

King Rama I is the first king of the Chakri Dynasty. He had many missions at the same time. The most important mission was to protect the kingdom as well as to revive the Thai culture. During his reign, he led the troops into battle and protected the country from every invasion from Myanmar. In addition, he cherished the religion by constructing and restoring temples which had been damaged by the war. That period was regarded as one of peace and solidarity.

2. When is Thailand’s Chakri Day?

The Capital City

Each year, Thais celebrate Chakri Memorial Day on April 6.

3. Reading Practice: How is Chakri Day Celebrated?

Showing Respect

How is Chakri Day celebrated? Read the Thai text below to find out (you can find the English translation directly below it).


ธรรมเนียมของวันจักรีในทุกๆปีคือ กษัตริย์องค์ปัจจุบัน พร้อมด้วยพระบรมวงศานุวงศ์ จะเป็นประธานในพิธีทางศาสนา เพื่อบำเพ็ญกุศลให้กษัตริย์ในราชวงศ์ ณ วัดพระแก้ว จากนั้นก็เสด็จไป วางพวงมาลา ณ พระบรมราชานุสาวรีย์ของรัชกาลที่ 1 ที่สะพานพระพุทธยอดฟ้า โดยนายกรัฐมนตรีและข้าราชการชั้นผู้ใหญ่ เข้าร่วมพิธีวางพวงมาลาและบำเพ็ญกุศลด้วย
ปัจจุบัน ทั้งมูลนิธิ ส่วนราชการ และภาคเอกชนได้ร่วมกันจัดงานสัปดาห์เฉลิมพระเกียรติ โดยการจัดกิจกรรมเพื่อเฉลิมพระเกียรติและเป็นพระราชกุศล เปิดโอกาสให้ประชาชนได้มีส่วนร่วม เช่น ช่วยสนับสนุนการดำเนินงานตามโครงการพระราชดำริ ปลูกป่า สร้างบ้านให้ผู้ยากไร้ เป็นต้น ถือเป็นการช่วยเสริมสร้างความสามัคคีของคนในชาติได้เป็นอย่างดี

The tradition on Chakri Day each year is that the current king along with the royal figures host religious ceremony to pay respect to previous kings in the dynasty at the Royal Palace temple. Then, they go to lay a wreath at the Monument of King Rama I at the Phra Phuttha Yodfa Bridge. The wreath laying and charitable event are attended by the Prime Minister and senior officials.

Nowadays, foundations, government agencies, and private sectors cooperate to organize the Week of Honor by organizing activities to honor the royal family and make merit for them. The general public is allowed to participate in several activities. For example, they can help by sponsoring the King’s project, plant trees in the forest, and build houses for the poor. These can greatly help strengthen the unity of the nation.

4. Additional Information: Thailand’s Capital Changes

Since the establishment of Thailand, there have been fifty-two kings and the capital has changed three times from Sukhothai: to Ayutthaya, Thon Buri, and Bangkok, respectively. There have been six dynasties up to the current Chakri Dynasty.

Thon Buri, the capital before Bangkok, wasn’t a suitable location for strategic reasons. It was located on both banks of the river, making it a difficult place to transport weapons to and to protect. Also, the existing palace had limited space and couldn’t be extended further. In contrast, the current capital Bangkok is in a suitable location for a battle. Hence, the capital was moved there eventually.

5. Must-know Vocab

Following Traditions

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for Chakri Memorial Day!

  • กรุงเทพฯ (grung-thêep) — “Bangkok”
  • เคารพ (khao-róp) — “respect”
  • จำได้ (jam-dâi) — “remember
  • วันจักรี (wan-jàk-grii) — “Chakri Memorial Day”
  • ประเพณี (bprà-phee-nii) — “tradition”
  • รัชกาลที่ 1 (rát-chá-gaan thîi-nùeng) — “King Rama I”
  • กษัตริย์ (gà-sàt) — “king”
  • ราชวงศ์ (râat-chá-wong) — “dynasty”
  • ราชวงศ์จักรี (râat-chá-wong jàk-grii) — “Chakri Dynasty”
  • ขึ้นครองราชย์ (khûen-khraawng-râat) — “be enthroned”
  • เมืองหลวง (muueang-lǔuang) — “capital city”

To hear each word pronounced, check out our Chakri Memorial Day vocabulary list. Here, you’ll find each word accompanied by an audio of its pronunciation.

Conclusion

What do you think about Chakri Memorial Day in Thailand? Has your country also changed its capital like Thailand did? Let us know in the comments!

We hope you enjoyed learning about Chakri Memorial Day with us. If so, you can visit us at ThaiPod101.com for more information on Thai culture and the Thai language. We offer an array of insightful blog posts, free vocabulary lists, and on online community to discuss lessons with fellow Thai learners. You can also upgrade to Premium Plus to take advantage of a one-on-one learning experience with our MyTeacher program!

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make learning Thai both fun and informative. Know that all of your hard work will pay off, and someday you’ll be speaking Thai like a native! We wish you the best in your Thai language-learning journey!

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How to Celebrate Magha Puja Day in Thailand

It’s likely no surprise to you that in Thailand, Buddha and Buddhism are held in high regard. Thus, the Buddhist holiday Magha Puja (also known as Makha Bucha or Makha Bucha Day) is celebrated each year in commemoration of Buddha’s Ovadha Patimokha, or list of principles.

By learning about Makha Puja Day in Thailand, you’re showing respect toward the country whose language you seek to learn and are, indeed, providing yourself with the context you need to better understand it.

Here at ThaiPod101.com, we seek to help you understand all you need to know about Thai culture. In this article, we’ll be going more in depth on Magha Puja Day and hope you enjoy learning all of its little facets and traditions. Let’s begin!

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1. What is Magha Bucha Day?

Also called วันมาฆบูชา (wan maa-khá-buu-chaa) in Thai, Magha Bucha Day, or Magha Puja, is one of many Buddhist holidays. Even though it isn’t as important as Vesak Day, it’s still widely recognized. It was the day Buddha declared the core principles of his doctrine for all saints to distribute.

1- History of Makha Bucha and Buddha’s Teachings

On Makha Bucha Day, four miracles occurred on the same day, as follows.

One: It was a full moon on the fifteenth day of the waxing moon in the third month. Two: 1,250 monks came together to pay respect to the Buddha without any prior appointment. Three: All of the monks who came were saints or พระอรหันต์ (phrá aaw-rá-hăn). Four: All the monks had been ordained by the Buddha.

Because there were many monks coming together at the same time, the Buddha took this as an opportunity to announce “Ovadha Patimokha” which outlined the core principles of Buddhism. He addressed the goals, principles, and practice of Buddhism in full.

To summarize, the core of this preaching is that the ultimate goal of Buddhism is nirvana or นิพพาน (níp-phaan), which is a state without passion. Principles which can lead to nirvana are to abstain from bad action, to do good, and to purify the mind.

Ways to practice these include not encroaching on others, not harming others, not saying bad things about other people, keeping one’s behavior honorable, being reclusive, not annoying the community, learning to consume food appropriately, and persevering in practicing sound-mindedness.

As many monks who were all ordained by Buddha came to pay respect to the Buddha without any appointment on this day, this is regarded as a gesture of gratitude. As a result, the government also designated this day as one of gratitude.

Later, we’ll discuss how these teachings are implemented and celebrated on Magha Puja Day.

2. When is Magha Puja?

A Write-In Calendar

Magha Bucha is celebrated in Thailand during the third lunar month, on the day of its full moon. This date varies by year on the Gregorian calendar, but for your convenience we’ve provided a list of this holiday’s date for the next ten years.

  • 2019: February 19
  • 2020: February 8
  • 2021: February 26
  • 2022: February 16
  • 2023: February 5
  • 2024: February 23
  • 2025: February 11
  • 2026: February 1
  • 2027: February 20
  • 2028: February 9

3. How is Magha Puja Day Celebrated?

Upasampada Example

Buddhist practices on this day include offering food to monks in the morning, preparing food—either sweet or savory—for temples at lunchtime, and listening to preaching in the afternoon. The preaching or คำสอน (kham sǎawn) is to remind people of the way to live and to enter nirvana.

At night, all will gather and bring flowers and candles to the temple. They will walk around the temple with candles in their hands along with the monks; they walk in a clockwise fashion. While walking, people will remind themselves of the Buddha, his teachings, and the monks. When three rounds of walking are completed, candles and flowers are put on the altar, and the ceremony or พิธีกรรม (phí-thii gam) ends.

4. Additional Information

In Thailand, a man who wishes to ordain has to be at least twenty years old. If he is younger, he can only be ordained as a novice. Novices have to observe ten religious precepts, while monks need to observe 227 precepts. If a monk behaves inappropriately and is forced to leave the monkhood, he cannot ordain again. However, a novice can be re-ordained unless he’s guilty of serious misconduct.

5. Must-know Vocab

Three Jewels

Here’s some useful Thai vocabulary you should know to celebrate this holiday and better understand the Thai culture.

  • วันมาฆบูชา (wan-maa-khá-buu-chaa) — “Magha Puja Day”
  • บรรลุ (ban-lú) — “achieve”
  • อุปสมบท (ùp-bpà-sǒm-bòt) — “upasampada”
  • รัตนตรัย (rát-dtà-ná-dtrai) — “three jewels”
  • พระสงฆ์ (phrá-sǒng) — “sangha”
  • เจดีย์ (jee-dii) — “pagoda”
  • ฟังเทศน์ (fang-thêet) — “listen to a sermon”
  • ชุมนุม (chum-num) — “gather together”
  • ตรัสรู้ (dtràt-sà-rúu) — “enlightenment in Buddhism”
  • พระพุทธเจ้า (phrá-phút-thá-jâo) — “buddhahood”
  • นัดหมาย (nát-mǎai) — “appointment”

If you want to hear the each word pronounced, visit our Magha Puja Day vocabulary list. Here, you’ll find an audio alongside each word with its pronunciation.

Conclusion

Now you know more about Magha Puja in Thailand. What do you think of this Buddhist holiday and the teachings it reveres? Is there a similar holiday in your own country? Let us know in the comments!

To learn even more about Thai culture and its language, visit us at ThaiPod101.com. We offer an array of insightful blog posts, free vocabulary lists, and even an online community where you can discuss lessons with fellow Thai students. Also be sure to download our MyTeacher app if you want to take advantage of a one-on-one learning experience with your very own personal Thai teacher!

Until next time, we hope you’ll continue practicing and study hard! At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make this learning experience both fun and efficient. With enough effort and motivation, you can master the Thai language before you know it!

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How to Celebrate Children’s Day in Thailand

Learning about Thai holidays is one of the best ways to increase your knowledge of Thai culture, and can be a great way to improve your vocabulary skills too!

In Thailand, family holidays are of great importance considering the friendly and familial nature the country possesses. So it should be no surprise that it celebrates a national Children’s Day (Thai Children’s Day), which seeks to both celebrate and encourage Thai children for who they are and who they can become.

Learn more about Thai Children’s Day with ThaiPod101.com, and become a master of Thai culture. Also learn some handy Thailand holiday vocabulary for your arsenal to make your trip to Thailand a breeze!

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1. Why Should You Know About Thai Children’s Day?

When learning a new language, exploring its culture is just as important as studying the language itself. A country’s holidays are not only a fascinating aspect of its culture, but they also expose the heart of its people and the depth of its past.

Children’s Day in Thailand, for instance, is a reflection of the country’s emphasis on caring for children, and their importance for the future of the country. Once you’ve discovered more about this holiday, you’ll be better able to understand what makes Thailand unique, and what characteristics its people and government share.

For instance, in Thailand, family holidays make for fun and meaningful occasions—days to celebrate family and take it easy with those you love. Thai Children’s Day, though not a public holiday, is no exception and falls on Saturday for this purpose.

2. What is Thai Children’s Day?

Thailand really does take its children seriously—and it realizes that children don’t always want to be serious. Children’s Day (also called Wan Dek or wan-dèk-hàeng châat) in Thailand, though not a public holiday, is a day in early January where children are celebrated and encouraged to become their best.

The day is highlighted by public events where children’s work and accomplishments are put on display as a show of praise and encouragement. Further, each year the Prime Minister gives a motto to children in hopes that they’ll remember it and use it to grow into fine adults.

Children Holding Arms Up In Air

3. When is Thai Children’s Day?

In 2019, Thai Children’s Day will take place on January 12, and this holiday always takes place on the second Saturday in January. For your convenience, here’s a list of the holiday’s date for the next ten years:

  • 2019: January 12
  • 2020: January 11
  • 2021: January 9
  • 2022: January 8
  • 2023: January 14
  • 2024: January 13
  • 2025: January 11
  • 2026: January 10
  • 2027: January 9
  • 2028: January 8

4. How is Thai Children’s Day Celebrated?

Circle of Friends

One common event on this holiday is Thailand’s Prime Minister offering the children of Thailand a short motto to inspire them and take to heart. This motto often has to do with certain moral traits that are most desirable for the future of Thailand, and for people to have in general. (However, there is some controversy and debate on the actual value of these mottos, with some believing they’re too generic and ineffectual.)

Even the schools get involved on Thai Children’s Day, putting on special events to both encourage Thailand’s children and offer them a day of fun. You’ll also find exhibitions of school children’s accomplishments, particularly in the arts.

But the real fun comes in the form of carnivals and other lighthearted festivities that children are encouraged to participate in. Some businesses even use this day to offer children free admission into their place of business; this includes zoos, museums, and even some of Thai’s military bases.

This makes for the perfect occasion for parents to spend time out and about with their children. Some common activities for Children’s Day include visits to the aforementioned zoos, museums, and bases, as well as quality time at home (and probably a special meal!).

In short, Children’s Day in Thailand is meant to both inspire and encourage children, and to allow them to enjoy the freedom of being a kid. Further, it’s a day for parents, teachers, and other adults to show their appreciation and respect for children, and to ponder their importance themselves.

5. Must-Know Vocab for Thai Children’s Day

A Toy Train

To celebrate Thai Children’s Day, you should have a basic knowledge of the most common words associated with this day. To help you out, we’ve provided a quick list of important words for this Thailand holiday:

  • เด็ก (dèk) — “Children”
  • เอาใจใส่ (ao-jai-sài) — “Pay attention”
  • ผู้ใหญ่ (phûu-yài) — “Adult”
  • ครอบครัว (khrâawp-khruua) — “Family
  • วันเด็กแห่งชาติ (wan-dèk-hàeng châat) — “Children’s Day”
  • งานวันเด็ก (ngaan-wan-dèk) — “Children’s Day festival”
  • ความอบอุ่น (khwaam-òp-ùn) — “Warmth”
  • ของเล่น (khǎawng-lên) — “Toy”
  • สำนึก (sǎm-núek) — “Realize”
  • เลี้ยงเด็ก (líiang-dèk) — “Raise a child”
  • คำขวัญ (kham-khwǎn) — “Motto”
  • ความสุข (khwaam-sùk) — “Happiness

If you want to hear the pronunciation of each Thai Children’s Day vocabulary word, check out our Thai Children’s Day word list which includes audio along with each word.

Conclusion

Thailand’s national Children’s Day is a significant occasion in Thailand, and is a great example of how children should be appreciated worldwide. From the fun activities for Children’s Day to the meaning behind it, it’s clear to see that Thailand values not only its future, but those who will be there to live in it.

What do you think about Thai Children’s Day? Is there a national Children’s Day in your country?

If you want to learn more about Thailand’s culture and the Thai language, be sure to visit us at ThaiPod101.com. We have lots of invaluable tools to help you efficiently learn Thai while staying entertained! These include vocabulary lists, insightful blog posts, and our MyTeacher app which offers you one-on-one guidance as you navigate everything Thai! Learning Thai can be both fun and efficient with ThaiPod101.com.

Also be sure to stay tuned for more articles on Thai holidays for an even better glimpse into Thai culture. In the meantime, be sure to practice your Thai Children’s Day vocabulary for the best Thailand holiday experience.

We wish you the best of luck in your language-learning journey!

How to Say Happy New Year in Thai & New Year Wishes

Learn all the Thai New Year wishes online, in your own time, on any device! Join ThaiPod101 for a special Thai New Year celebration!

How to Say Happy New Year in Thai

Can you relate to the year passing something like this: “January, February, March – December!”? Many people do! Quantum physics teaches us that time is relative, and few experiences illustrate this principle as perfectly as when we reach the end of a year. To most of us, it feels like the old one has passed in the blink of an eye, while the new year lies ahead like a very long journey! However, New Year is also a time to celebrate beginnings, and to say goodbye to what has passed. This is true in every culture, no matter when New Year is celebrated.

So, how do you say Happy New Year in Thai? Let a native teach you! At ThaiPod101, you will learn how to correctly greet your friends over New Year, and wish them well with these Thai New Year wishes!

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Table of Contents

  1. How to Celebrate New Year in Thailand
  2. Must-Know Thai Words & Phrases for the New Year!
  3. Top 10 New Year’s Resolutions in Thai
  4. Inspirational New Year Quotes
  5. Inspirational Language Learning Quotes
  6. How To Say Happy New Year in 31 Languages
  7. How ThaiPod101 Can Help You Learn Thai

But let’s start with some vocabulary for Thai New Year celebrations, very handy for conversations.

1. How to Celebrate New Year in Thailand

Let’s discuss New Year’s Day, or, as it’s generally known, New Year, which is celebrated on January 1 every year. New Year activities in Thailand are unique and quite different to those in other countries.

Now, before we get into more detail, do you know the answer to this question-

On New Year’s Day, one activity that has been popular for a long time is sending “Sor Kor Sor” or “Song Kwam Suk” greeting cards. The full name means “sending happiness”. What is the history behind these?

If you don’t already know, you’ll find out a bit later. Keep reading.

When it gets close to the New Year festival, Thai people will start to clean their houses and decorate them with lights. Then, on December 31, people will go to their local temples or วัด (wát) to listen to preaching and practice Dharma. There are several popular temples where Thai people often go, including Wat Phra Kaew and Wat Kallayanamitra. The most popular activity during New Year’s Eve is praying all night long until the break of the new year. But of course, the New Year’s countdown is a widely recognized tradition as well.

On January 1, people will make offerings, listen to preaching, and ask for blessings or คำอวยพร (kham uuai phaawn) from their elders. Some will go to several temples for “luck enhancement”, in the hopes of establishing a good beginning to the new year. Most people will also take time to be with their family and friends and enjoy festive activities. One such activity is drawing lots for gift exchanges. The Thai word for gift is ของขวัญ (khǎawng khwăn).

On the New Year, people usually send greeting cards or การ์ดอวยพร (gáat uuai phaawn) and wish each other luck by saying “Happy New Year” or “Hello New Year” with big smiles on their faces. In addition, shops usually play a popular song called “Pon pee mai” which means ‘New Year blessings’, and was composed by King Rama IX as a gift to the Thai people.

In the past, April 1 was designated as New Year’s Day, but in 1941, the government changed Thailand’s New Year’s Day to January 1 in keeping with the international tradition.

Now it’s time to answer our quiz question-

What is the history of the popular activity on New Year’s Day of sending “Sor Kor Sor” or “Song Kwam Suk”?

Actually, Thailand did not originally have a tradition of sending “Sor Kor Sor”. Rather, they adopted this cultural practice from foreign countries after the late Ayutthaya period. The greeting cards come in the form of paper with writing or printed images.

Happy New Year!
สุขสันต์วันปีใหม่
sùk-sǎn wan-phii-mài

2. Must-Know Thai Words & Phrases for the New Year!

Thai Words & Phrases for the New Year

1- Year

ปี
bpii

This is pretty self-explanatory. Most countries follow a Gregorian calendar, which has approximately 365 days in a year, while in some cultures, other year designations are also honored. Therefore, New Year’s day in Thailand could fall on a different day than in your country. When do you celebrate New Year?

2- Midnight

เที่ยงคืน
thîiang-khuuen

The point in time when a day ends and a new one starts. Many New Year celebrants prefer to stay awake till midnight, and greet the new annum as it breaks with fanfare and fireworks!

3- New Year’s Day

วันปีใหม่ วันปีใหม่
wan-bpii-mài

In most countries, the new year is celebrated for one whole day. On the Gregorian calendar, this falls on January 1st. On this day, different cultures engage in festive activities, like parties, parades, big meals with families and many more.

You can do it!

4- Party

งานเลี้ยง
ngaan-líiang

A party is most people’s favorite way to end the old year, and charge festively into the new one! We celebrate all we accomplished in the old year, and joyfully anticipate what lies ahead.

5- Dancing

เต้นรำ
dtên-ram

Usually, when the clock strikes midnight and the New Year officially begins, people break out in dance! It is a jolly way to express a celebratory mood with good expectations for the year ahead. Also, perhaps, that the old year with its problems has finally passed! Dance parties are also a popular way to spend New Year’s Eve in many places.

6- Champagne

แชมเปญ
chaaem-bpeen

Originating in France, champagne is a bubbly, alcoholic drink that is often used to toast something or someone during celebrations.

7- Fireworks

ดอกไม้ไฟ
dàawk-máai-fai

These are explosives that cause spectacular effects when ignited. They are popular for announcing the start of the new year with loud noises and colorful displays! In some countries, fireworks are set off to scare away evil spirits. In others, the use of fireworks is forbidden in urban areas due to their harmful effect on pets. Most animals’ hearing is much more sensitive than humans’, so this noisy display can be very frightful and traumatising to them.

8- Countdown

การนับถอยหลัง
gaan náp-tháauy-lăng

This countdown refers to New Year celebrants counting the seconds, usually backward, till midnight, when New Year starts – a great group activity that doesn’t scare animals, and involves a lot of joyful shouting when the clock strikes midnight!

9- New Year’s Holiday

วันหยุดปีใหม่
wan-yùt bpii-mài

In many countries, New Year’s Day is a public holiday – to recuperate from the party the previous night, perhaps! Families also like to meet on this day to enjoy a meal and spend time together.

10- Confetti

เศษกระดาษสีที่ใช้โปรยในงานรื่นเริง
sèet grà-dàat sǐi thîi chái bprooi nai ngaan rûuen-rooeng

In most Western countries, confetti is traditionally associated with weddings, but often it is used as a party decoration. Some prefer to throw it in the air at the strike of midnight on New Year’s Eve.

11- New Year’s Eve

วันส่งท้ายปีเก่า
wan sòng-tháai bpii-gào

This is the evening before New Year breaks at midnight! Often, friends and family meet for a party or meal the evening before, sometimes engaging in year-end rituals. How are you planning to give your New Year greetings in 2018?

12- Toast

ดื่มอวยพร
dùuem-uuai-phaawn

A toast is a type of group-salutation that involves raising your glass to drink with others in honor of something or someone. A toast to the new year is definitely in order!

13- Resolution

ข้อตั้งใจ
khâaw dtâng-jai

Those goals or intentions you hope to, but seldom keep in the new year! Many people consider the start of a new year to be the opportune time for making changes or plans. Resolutions are those intentions to change, or the plans. It’s best to keep your resolutions realistic so as not to disappoint yourself!

14- Parade

ขบวนแห่
khà-buuan hàae

New Year celebrations are a huge deal in some countries! Parades are held in the streets, often to celebratory music, with colorful costumes and lots of dancing. Parades are like marches, only less formal and way more fun. At ThaiPod101, you can engage in forums with natives who can tell you what Thai New Year celebrations are like!

3. Top 10 New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s Resolutions List

So, you learned the Thai word for ‘resolution’. Fabulous! Resolutions are those goals and intentions that we hope to manifest in the year that lies ahead. The beginning of a new year serves as a good marker in time to formalise these. Some like to do it in writing, others only hold these resolutions in their hearts. Here are our Top 10 New Year’s resolutions at ThaiPod101 – what are yours?

Learn these phrases and impress your Thai friends with your vocabulary.

New Year's Resolutions

1- Read more

อ่านหนังสือมากขึ้น
àan nǎng-sǔue mâak-khûen

Reading is a fantastic skill that everyone can benefit from. You’re a business person? Apparently, successful business men and women read up to 60 books a year. This probably excludes fiction, so better scan your library or Amazon for the top business reads if you plan to follow in the footsteps of the successful! Otherwise, why not make it your resolution to read more Thai in the new year? You will be surprised by how much this will improve your Thai language skills!

2- Spend more time with family

ใช้เวลากับครอบครัวมากขึ้น
chái wee-laa gàp khrâawp-khruua mâak-khûen

Former US President George Bush’s wife, Barbara Bush, was quoted as having said this: “At the end of your life, you will never regret not having passed one more test, not winning one more verdict, or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a friend, a child, a parent.” This is very true! Relationships are often what gives life meaning, so this is a worthy resolution for any year.

3- Lose weight

ลดน้ำหนัก
lóot nám-nàk

Hands up, how many of you made this new year’s resolution last year too…?! This is a notoriously difficult goal to keep, as it takes a lot of self discipline not to eat unhealthily. Good luck with this one, and avoid unhealthy fad diets!

4- Save money

ออมเงิน
aawm-gnoen

Another common and difficult resolution! However, no one has ever been sorry when they saved towards reaching a goal. Make it your resolution to save money to upgrade your subscription to ThaiPod101’s Premium PLUS option in the new year – it will be money well spent!

5- Quit smoking

เลิกบุหรี่
lôoek bù-rìi

This is a resolution that you should definitely keep, or your body could punish you severely later! Smoking is a harmful habit with many hazardous effects on your health. Do everything in your power to make this resolution come true in the new year, as your health is your most precious asset.

6- Learn something new

เรียนรู้สิ่งใหม่
riian-rúu sìng-mài

Science has proven that learning new skills can help keep brain diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s at bay! It can even slow down the progression of the disease. So, keep your brain healthy by learning to speak a new language, studying towards a qualification, learning how to sew, or how to play chess – no matter how old you are, the possibilities are infinite!

7- Drink less

ลดเหล้า
lót-lâo

This is another health resolution that is good to heed any time of the year. Excessive drinking is associated with many diseases, and its effect can be very detrimental to good relationships too. Alcohol is a poison and harmful for the body in large quantities!

8- Exercise regularly

ออกกำลังกายเป็นประจำ
àawk-gam-lang-gaai bpen bprà-jam

This resolution goes hand-in-hand with ‘Lose weight’! An inactive body is an unhealthy and often overweight one, so give this resolution priority in the new year.

9- Eat healthy

ทานอาหารมีประโยชน์
thaan aa-hǎan mii bprà-yòot

If you stick with this resolution, you will lose weight and feel better in general. It is a very worthy goal to have!

10- Study Thai with ThaiPod101

เรียนภาษาไทยกับ ThaiPod101.com
riian phaa-sǎa thai gàp thai-pàwt wan-oo-wan dàwt khawm

Of course! You can only benefit from learning Thai, especially with us! Learning how to speak Thai can keep your brain healthy, it can widen your circle of friends, and improve your chances to land a dream job anywhere in the world. ThaiPod101 makes it easy and enjoyable for you to stick to this resolution.

4. Inspirational New Year Quotes

Inspirational Quotes

Everyone knows that it is sometimes very hard to stick to resolutions, and not only over New Year. The reasons for this vary from person to person, but all of us need inspiration every now and then! A good way to remain motivated is to keep inspirational quotes near as reminders that it’s up to us to reach our goals.

Click here for quotes that will also work well in a card for a special Thai new year greeting!

Make decorative notes of these in Thai, and keep them close! Perhaps you could stick them above your bathroom mirror, or on your study’s wall. This way you not only get to read Thai incidentally, but also remain inspired to reach your goals! Imagine feeling like giving up on a goal, but reading this quote when you go to the bathroom: “It does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop.” What a positive affirmation!

5. Inspirational Language Learning Quotes

Language Learning Quotes

Still undecided whether you should enroll with ThaiPod101 to learn a new language? There’s no time like the present to decide! Let the following Language Learning Quotes inspire you with their wisdom.

Click here to read the most inspirational Language Learning Quotes!

As legendary President Nelson Mandela once said: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.” So, learning how to say Happy New Year in Thai could well be a way into someone special’s heart for you! Let this year be the one where you to learn how to say Happy New Year, and much more, in Thai – it could open many and unexpected doors for you.

6. How To Say Happy New Year in 31 Languages

Here’s a lovely bonus for you! Why stop with Thai – learn how to say Happy New Year in 31 other languages too! Watch this video and learn how to pronounce these New Year’s wishes like a native in under two minutes.

7. Why Enrolling with ThaiPod101 Would Be the Perfect New Year’s Gift to Yourself!

If you are unsure how to celebrate the New Year, why not give yourself a huge gift, and enroll to learn Thai! With more than 12 years of experience behind us, we know that ThaiPod101 would be the perfect fit for you. There are so many reasons for this!

Learning Paths

  • Custom-tailored Learning Paths: Start learning Thai at the level that you are. We have numerous Learning Pathways, and we tailor them just for you based on your goals and interests! What a boon!
  • Marked Progress and Fresh Learning Material Every Week: We make new lessons available every week, with an option to track your progress. Topics are culturally appropriate and useful, such as “Learning how to deliver negative answers politely to a business partner.” Our aim is to equip you with Thai that makes sense!
  • Multiple Learning Tools: Learn in fun, easy ways with resources such 1,000+ video and audio lessons, flashcards, detailed PDF downloads, and mobile apps suitable for multiple devices!
  • Fast Track Learning Option: If you’re serious about fast-tracking your learning, Premium Plus would be the perfect way to go! Enjoy perks such as personalised lessons with ongoing guidance from your own, native-speaking teacher, and one-on-one learning on your mobile app! You will not be alone in your learning. Weekly assignments with non-stop feedback, answers and corrections will ensure speedy progress.
  • Fun and Easy: Keeping the lessons fun and easy-to-learn is our aim, so you will stay motivated by your progress!

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There’s no reason not to go big in 2018 by learning Thai with ThaiPod101. Just imagine how the world can open up for you!