Sriwittayapaknam School > English Homepage > Thailand Festivals > Loy Krathong


More Pictures: Students Making Krathongs | Down by the River

One of the most beautiful and popular festivals in Thailand is Loy Krathong. This takes place on the full moon in November. During the evening, many people will go to their local klong (canal) or river to float their krathongs. They believe this will bring them good luck. The krathongs (see picture left) contain a flower, a candle and three incense sticks which are lighted before being placed on the water. The people usually make a wish at the same time. Some people believe that if the candle remains burning until the krathong is out of sight then their wish will come true. By the end of the evening, there are hundreds of flickering lights bobbing up and down on the water. Quite often there are also firework displays as well as shows and beauty contests for everyone. Overall it is really a memorable evening.

At school, the students make their own Krathongs from paper (see pictures below). Others are made by using banana leaves. If you can't make your own then there are always plenty you can buy. The following are reports written by students in Primary 6 at our school describing what they did on Loy Krathong Day last year.

Sunatee: "Loy Krathong means to float a banana leaf cup on water. We do this to ask Mother of Water to forgive us for polluting the water. On Loy Krathong Day there is a full moon in the sky and there is full water in the river. We float our krathong in the river with our parents. On Loy Krathong Day we feel very happy."

Anon: Yesterday, I went to the river near my house. I wanted to float my krathong. I went to the river with my mother and sister by motorcycle. I played firecrackers with my sister. By the river I lighted the candle and incense sticks in my krathong. I made a wish for a better future and clean water. After, I went to play lucky dip with my sister. I won some sweets and toilet paper. Then I went to the target range.

Pornpun: Yesterday was Loy Krathong Day. I made a krathong made of paper in the handicraft lesson. It was not beautiful. My family and I went to the river. I put my money in my krathong. I lighted the candle and incense sticks. I made a vow for happiness. After, I played fireworks with my family. I ate Tom Yum with prawns and dark brown curry. It was a nice and fun day.

Wararat: On Loy krathong Day the moon was full in the sky. I made a krathong to float on the river. Then my family went to the river by motorcycle. I saw many people come to float their krathongs on the river to thank the Mother of Water. I lighted the incense sticks and candle in my krathong and I took a vow. After, I played fire crackers with my brother. Then, we went to watch the Miss Nopamas Competition.

Sasiprapa: Yesterday was Loy Krathong Day. I made a krathong with my aunt. I used banana leaves to make my krathong. I decorated my krathong with flowers. I played fire crackers with my brother. I then put 1 baht in my krathong. I lighted the candle and incense sticks and as I floated it on the river I made a vow.

Niwaat: Yesterday, after I went home, I made a krathong with my mum. I took bath and then I went to the river. I lighted the candle and incense sticks. I floated my krathong and I took a vow for my health. After I floated my krathong I played fireworks. It was very fun. I played with my younger brother and my cousin.

Rapee: Yesterday I went to the klong for Loy Krathong Festival. I went there with my older brother and my friends. First I played fire crackers with my friends but it wasn't good because it was a waste of money and it was not safe. I used a krathong from handicraft lesson. I didn't put any money in it because the thieves might steal my money. I lighted the candle before I floated my krathong in the klong.

Yot: Yesterday was Loy Krathong Day. I saw a full moon in the sky. I went to the river at the town hall. I went to the river with my father, mother and sister. I took a krathong I made at school. I lighted the candle and incense sticks in my krathong. I pushed it away onto the water and prayed. After I finished floating my krathong I played lucky dip. I got three glasses, some sweets and toilet paper. I played fire works and firecrackers.

Teerachot: Yesterday was Loy Krathong Day. I went to the river with my parents. We went on a boat and I lighted the candle and incense sticks in my krathong. Then I prayed and pushed away my krathong. After I finished floating, I played fireworks and fire crackers. Then I played lucky dip. I got some sweets and toilet paper. Then I went to the target range. Then I bought some snacks and some water.

Tanet: On Loy Krathong Day I went to the Town Hall by motorcycle. I went with my sister. I floated my krathong in the river. I saw many salespeople selling krathongs, fireworks and fire crackers. I took my krathong down to the river. I lighted the candle and incense sticks. After, I played lucky dip. I bought three tickets for 30 baht. I won toilet paper and sweets.

Sunatee: I went to Loy Krathong with my mother and my sister on the river. There was a full moon in the sky and the water was high. There were many people who went to Loy krathong. We floated our krathong from a boat in the river. First we lighted the candle and incense sticks. Then we took a vow for good luck. Then we pushed our krathongs away. After we finished we ate in a restaurant. We ate rice noodle soup with vegetables and meat. It was very delicious. Then we played lucky dip at the Red Cross stall three times. We won a glass, a pen and a plate. Then we went home.

Orawan: Yesterday I went to the river near my house with my family. We took our krathongs to float on the river. I lighted the candle and incense sticks. I prayed and then I floated my krathong on the river. After, I bought some fireworks and fire crackers. I then played with my sister and brother. At the river I met my friends. I chatted with them for a while. Then I went to a restaurant with my family. We ate some rice and chicken fried in fresh chili paste and basil.

The students also sing a Loy Krathong song in Thai. The following is the English version:

November full moon shines,
Loy Krathong, Loy Krathong,
and the water's high in the river and local klong,
Loy Loy Krathong, Loy Loy Krathong,
Loy Krathong is here and everybody's full of cheer,
We're together at the klong,
Each one with his krathong,
As we push away we pray,
We can see a better day.

The Loy Krathong festival dates back to the time of the Sukhothai Kingdom, about 700 years ago. It marked the end of the rainy season and the main rice harvest. It is based on a Hindu tradition of thanking the water god for the waters. The farmers of Sukhothai used to hold a festival of floating candles. One year, a beautiful woman called Noppamas, who was the chief royal consort, made some special lanterns for the festival. She made them from banana leaves and shaped them like lotus flowers. The king was impressed with what he saw, so he announced that krathongs would be floated on the water every year from then on. Today, the memory of that woman who made the first krathong is remembered in a beauty contest called "The Noppamas Queen Contest".

More Pictures: Students Making Krathongs | Down by the River

Visit our school pages for Loy Krathong on our Thai Culture at School web site. Also take a look at the many pictures we took in our local area during Loy Krathong. We also have the story about the First Loy Krathong Festival. These links will open in a new window.