Thai festivals you shouldn't miss! Most festivals depend on the lunar calendar, so the date varies from year to year. Verify the right dates with for example the Tourism Authority of Thailand.

Vegetarian Festival (ประเพณีกินผัก)

For 9 days Buddhist Chinese will eat vegetarian food. This habit dates back around 150 years, when visiting Chinese who fell sick with malaria, cured themselves with vegetarian food and ancient rituals. Chinese food shops will sell vegetarian food and are marked with little red & yellow flags. Highlight is the celebration of the end of the festival in Phuket. Men parade the streets with big piercings through their body, using e.g. knives, swords and spears. Because they are in religious ecstasy, you will see no blood and they claim to feel no pain. Not on an empty stomach. [September/October, Phuket]

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