Illuminated Boat Procession

Thai Name: งานประเพณีไหลเรือไฟ
17-25 October 2018
Venue: Along the Mekong river on Sunthornvichit Road
GPS Coordinates: 17.393111, 104.792358

The illuminated boat procession or ‘Lai Ruea Fai’ event (งานประเพณีไหลเรือไฟ) is a tradition of the Northeastern people that has been practiced for centuries to mark the end of Buddhist Lent. Legend has it that the Lord Buddha spent the entire period of Buddhist Lent in Heaven and returned to Earth at the end. To pay respect and welcome the Lord Buddha, Ruea Fai or fire boats decorated with flowers, incense sticks, candles, and lanterns are launched on the Mekong River in the evening. This takes place on the full moon day during October.

Originally, the boats were made of bamboo or banana tree trunks and decorated with materials that could be easily found. Currently, with competitions to find the most beautiful illuminated boat processions, the boats have become more impressively constructed and decorated. The event will take place at the city hall in Nakhon Phanom and along the Mekong river on Sunthornvichit Road. The highlight of the festival is the procession on Wednesday 24th October from 7pm onwards.


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