Finally, after exploring Phuket and the islands surroundings, it’s the time for Songkran!
The festival was actually started on the 12th. After the relaxing sea-canoeing in the afternoon (read more about the canoeing tour here), we went back to our hotel, had ourselves cleaned up and head to Patong area to check on the water party.
The trip to Patong by TukTuk was THB400. As we were getting nearer to the destination, the roads gradually changed from dry to wet and more people were seen wearing their raincoats and bringing water guns. We knew, we would not be going back with dry clothes tonight..
We went to Bangla Road, the hippiest road in Patong or perhaps in Phuket. It was already full of crowds, mostly were foreigners. The celebration there was all about partying, loud music and crazily fun! As we entered the road, anyone just threw water at you and rubbed some minty powder to your face. Yeap, we were fully soaked from head to toe! Sadly, we did not bring our water guns that night.
On the next day, we were ready for the real water fight 🙂 Fully equipped with our water guns, sunglasses and slippers, we decided to go to Phuket Town instead to join the locals. I love the place. The area features an exciting mix of old and new, the colourful blend of Sino and Portuguese cultures. It is not as crowded as Patong, less night clubs, simpler but yet sophisticated.
The celebration of Songkran in Phuket Town was more warming. The neighbourhood came together, giving blessings to the passerby, including us who are not locals. They would happily approach you, rub the minty powder or coloured washable paint on your face, another will pour another bucket of water on you and lastly said “Sawatdee-pimai!” (Happy New Year). I had so much fun, behaving like a small kid again, hiding and shooting water at the others as if I’m at a counterstrike field and getting free beers!
I believe this is how the real Songkran all about ; the friendly water fight where people throw water to each other which they believe is a way to wash away all the bad luck from the previous year and substitute it with the good luck instead. And on the other hand it is a festivity of water guns, water cannons and buckets while the intense heat of summer is on.