Loi Krathong takes place on the evening of the full moon of the 12th month in the traditional Thai lunar calendar. In the western calendar this usually falls in November.
In the night of the full moon, locals will float small rafts or Krathong in the river or on any bodies of water present in their area. Some even float the raft in a basin in the comfort of their own backyard. Thais believes that this gesture is to honor and pay homage to the Goddess of the water Phra Mae Khongkha. Some believe that it is to ask for forgivenessto the things that they have done to the rivers during the past years, hence it is done during the end of the year. Other Loy Krathong holiday traditions include setting eels and turtles free in the river or pond. Your children may have fun doing this. You’ll find them being sold near the water. The Loy Krathong holiday is also celebrated with beauty pageants.
The grandest Loy Krathong celebrations are in Chiang Mai. Enjoy the parades with large floats fashioned as giant krathongs each with their own theme. Many of the celebrants on the floats dress in regal Thai costumes or as mythical Thai beings, and you’re also likely to see beauty queens waving to the crowd.