Thousands of lanterns lighting up the night sky during the Yi Peng and Loi Krathong festivals…
In November is the most anticipated festival in Chiang Mai’s yearly calendar. Yi Peng & Loi Krathong never seems to disappoint.
Get ready for one of the most illuminating, spiritual, crazy, fun and explosive festivals in Chiang Mai. What you get out of it all depends on where you position yourself during the combined Yi Peng and Loi Krathong festivals. Held around the time of the full moon, it’s a time of reflection, releasing past negative energy and scaring the hell out of unsuspecting by-standers.
At the moment, students around Chiang Mai are hard at work developing, designing and acquiring new fireworks, or the newest ear-popping bombs to attach onto their lanterns. For first timers, the festival in Chiang Mai lasts for about three days, with scattered events over five to six days. You can participate in the festival by releasing lanterns in to the air or by floating krathongs down the river Ping.
Krathongs are small round floating offerings, usually made of wood and leaves from banana trees. These are decorated with flowers, a small candle and burning incense sticks. You can make your own, which I recommend, or you can buy one from any of the multitude of vendors near the river.
What makes this festival magical is seeing the krathongs floating down the river and thousands of lanterns lighting up the night sky – truly spectacular and an unforgettable experience!
The biggest lantern release is held behind Mae Jo University in Chiang Mai known as the Lanna Dhutanka grounds. It is free for all to enter and you’ll need to wear respectable clothing.
GET THERE EARLY!! Ceremony starts in the late afternoon with Buddhist prayers.
*18.30-19-30 the lighting of lanterns begins.