TAT New York office to host a virtual Songkran from Chiang Mai

The Tourism Authority of Thailand is set to host a virtual Songkran celebration from Chiang Mai next month in its New York office to celebrate the Thai New Year. “Spring into Songkran Splendours” will be broadcast live from Chiang Mai and is scheduled for Tuesday, April 8 from 8pm-9pm Eastern Standard Time. Free registration is available online by following this link.

The broadcast will feature several segments that highlight Thailand’s traditional culture, festivals and food. Beginning with a segment on the meaning and importance of Songkran, it will then broadcast a traditional water blessing from the Ban Rai Kong Khing community. The community is known for practising holistic wellness, making organic products, and offering homestays in Chiang Mai. Further segments will focus on elephant care tourism and Thai food culture. Santi Sawangcharoen, Director of the TAT New York Office, says he looks forward to a chance to enjoy the Songkran holiday while awaiting the reopening of Thailand.

“As we prepare for travel’s rebound during the new normal, celebrating Songkran virtually will allow us to gather and enjoy the meaning of the holiday in a new way that feels exciting at this time.”

Chiang Mai’s Patara Elephant Farm, a family-run conservation project, will give a presentation on how to better the conditions of Thai elephants through conservation, healthcare, and sustainable solutions. Celebrity chef Arnold Myint, star of Top Chef and the Food Network, will give a virtual cooking class featuring Thai Papaya Salad, or Som Tam, in Thai language.

The virtual celebration comes as Thai authorities wrestle over how to celebrate the upcoming Songkran holiday during Covid-19 times. Recent decisions are leaning towards a dry celebration for a day that’s traditionally drenched in water fights. Large events must submit a plan of activities for Songkran, which are subject to approval.

Chiang Mai, the home of TAT’s virtual Songkran event, was recently ranked as the “Friendliest City in the World” in the Traveller’s Readers’ Choice Awards by Conde Naste. It’s hoped that the city’s friendly spirit will inspire people worldwide to join in Thailand’s Songkran New Year celebration.


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Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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