Once-a-Year Wonders (Calendar)
- Key Details
- Cultural Discoveries
- Explorations of Land and Sea
- A Gourmand’s Paradise
With the Thai zest for life (what the locals call “sanuk”), there’s no shortage of festivals on Phuket’s cultural calendar. Phuket, being poised at a fascinating crossroads of Asia, means there are a diverse range of festivals, a time when Thais and non-Thais alike come together to celebrate their rich history and traditions. Try to coincide your stay at Anantara Resorts with one of these colourful and vibrant expressions of Thai culture.
The Thao Thep Krasatri-Thao Sri Suntorn Festival
This lively week-long festival commemorates the two heroines who lead the inhabitants of Phuket to a decisive victory over the Burmese in the 18th Century. The festivities take place from the heroine’s monument. Explore the fun at a traditional Thai fair, loaded with delicious local food, entertainment and performances throughout the week.
Phuket Pride Festival
These four days at the end of March celebrate gay culture, with a volleyball tournament, cabaret shows, fire dances and performances. The highlight of the festival is the lively street parade.
The Thai New Year marks the most important holiday in Thailand. Celebrated in different ways across the country, the holiday unleashes a spell of gaiety over the entire population, with people celebrating by pouring water over the hands of elders to receive blessings for the new year, visiting temples to wash the sacred Buddha images, as well as taking to the streets to celebrate with the ritual water fights, an over-the-top tradition that has to be seen to be believed!
People from all ages and walks of life man the streets with water guns, buckets, hoses and the creamy clay powder that gets applied gently to others, only to be washed away with wild abandon. Prepare to get soaked!
Turtle Releasing Festival
To start the year fresh with sound environmental conservation, the Fisheries Department releases baby turtles into the sea by Nai Yang beach, only 15 kilometres from Anantara. If you’re lucky, you will be able to release your own turtle. It’s an unforgettable way to give back to this stunning natural environment.
Phuket Race Week
Head to Phuket Race Week, an ultimate regatta of sailboats catching the wind and setting records. The race is an international draw-card, pulling sailors from Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and other nations. Head to view the excitement, as the Monsoon winds are strong and challenging, even for the most seasoned athlete.
Por Tor Festival
Phuket’s Chinese temples go into full swing during this festival, a time for the Chinese inhabitants to commemorate the spirits of the ancestors. Explore the Chinese heritage of Phuket, with the many events, performances and delicacies that are prepared especially for this time of year.
Phuket Fireworks Festival
A celebration of summertime with a burst of colour over the water! Visit one of numerous viewpoints, such as Rang Hill, or relax along Phuket Bay to watch the spectacle.
Phuket Vegetarian Festival
This most famous and lively festival in Phuket is meant to cleanse the body, mind and spirit. During this period, residents of Chinese ancestry in Phuket and around the nation follow a strict vegan diet. It is said that the Vegetarian Festival began in Phuket, where a wandering Chinese opera troupe fell ill with malaria. All were healed, however, after praying to the Nine Emperor Gods and following a strict diet, abstaining from meats and other prohibited foods in order to cleanse and purify their bodies.
Today, the festival is celebrated by vibrant parades, with many floats, displays and music. A dramatic turn – only found in Phuket – are the tests of devotion carried out by particularly determined locals. Witness people walking on burning coals, piercing their faces with traditional weapons and other mental and physical tests. This powerful holiday is most prominent at the Chinese shrines.
Discover this magical Thai holiday, taking place during the full moon that marks the end of the rainy season in Thailand. Construct your own ‘krathong’, a small boat woven from banana leaves and decorated with fragrant clovers and candles. Then set it free to sail along the waters surrounding the island to pay homage to the Rain Goddess for bestowing the country with the rains that keep the countryside fertile and lush. The thousands of illuminated crafts across the ocean are a powerful and collective wish to expel all troubles for the upcoming year.
Laguna Phuket Triathlon
Put on your running shoes and get ready for the annual triathlon! Set near Bang Tao Beach, both professional and amateur triathletes visit Phuket in the temperate December weather to complete the circuit of swimming, biking and running through the island’s beautiful surrounds.
King’s Cup Regatta
This major annual regatta on the international yachting calendar draws crews from across the globe in a week of camaraderie and competition. The energy of the week is visible on and off the water, from the daily competitions to the elegant evening galas. In recent years, the competition has attracted top sailors from Australia, New Zealand and Europe. Get a taste of the passion that these sailors bring with them, which can be felt all across the island during this memorable week.