Friday, May 24, 2024

‘Buzzing’ Bangkok celebrates Lunar New Yr


BANGKOK, Thailand  — A riot of scarlet lanterns hung over the red-clothed crowds offering candles as they murmured prayers at a traditional temple in Bangkok to celebrate Lunar New Year.

Folks take photos alongside Yaowarat Street in Chinatown in Bangkok on February 10, 2024, on the primary day of the Lunar New Yr of the Dragon. (Photograph by Lillian SUWANRUMPHA / AFP)

BANGKOK, Thailand  — A riot of scarlet lanterns hung over the red-clothed crowds providing candles as they murmured prayers at a conventional temple in Bangkok to have fun the Lunar New Yr.

Thousands and thousands of Thai-Chinese language marked the event with events, household meals and visits to most of the shrines dotted round Chinatown.

The previous streets within the capital’s downtown got here alive on Saturday afternoon, with hundreds of curious vacationers and blissful devotees resembling Watcharin Parichatwuttikoon, 70, having fun with the event.

“It’s very sacred. I’ve attended since I used to be younger,” he instructed AFP exterior Wat Mongkorn, among the many metropolis’s largest.

Folks gentle incense at Kuan Yim shrine in Chinatown in Bangkok on February 10, 2024, on the primary day of the Lunar New Yr of the Dragon. (Photograph by Lillian SUWANRUMPHA / AFP)

“I prefer to make deserves, wash away dangerous deeds. Right this moment, it’s refreshing as a result of it’s raining.”

There’s a lengthy historical past of Chinese language migration to Thailand, with Thai-Chinese language folks accounting for roughly 10 % of the inhabitants — together with a few of the kingdom’s most distinguished enterprise households.

Temple-goers discovered a second for quiet reflection as they lit candles and made conventional choices in Wat Mongkorn — generally known as the “Dragon Temple” — earlier than returning to the bustle exterior.

Chawanakorn Arunthanachotikul, 31, had traveled together with his household and mates to be there.

“Right this moment is an efficient day for Thai-Chinese language folks,” he instructed AFP.

“I pray for luck and ask for this 12 months to finish easily.”

Lion dancers carry out at Kwang Tung shrine in Chinatown in Bangkok on February 10, 2024, on the primary day of the Lunar New Yr of the Dragon. (Photograph by Lillian SUWANRUMPHA / AFP)

Whereas many in downtown Bangkok had been from the dominion, the celebrations are a busy and extremely profitable time for tourism in Thailand as effectively.

Between January 1 and February 8 Thailand welcomed greater than 730,000 Chinese language guests, a Thai authorities spokesperson instructed native media on Saturday.

It follows final month’s visa waiver settlement between Bangkok and Beijing, which Thai officers hope will increase the dominion’s important tourism sector, which is struggling to bounce again from the Covid-19 pandemic.

In Chinatown, vacationers had been perusing the various stalls that had set out vibrant merchandise, with distributors usually wearing pink cheongsams.

Amongst these visiting was American-Chinese language vacationer Cassandra Branson, 22, who had travelled from Beijing.

“I needed to come back to Chinatown throughout Chinese language New Yr as a result of it looks like house,” she instructed AFP, saying she normally celebrated in New York.

“I spend it with household at house and it’s like extra quiet, much less buzzing. It’s very festive right here,” she stated.

“It’s much more full of life.”



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READ: Chinese language New Yr celebration in QC pushes Banawe Road as tourism hub 



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