Bangkok, 17 January, 2020 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has lined up several celebrations to mark the Chinese New Year 2020 from 24-30 January at various major destinations across Thailand with some locations starting on earlier dates and some finishing on later dates.
With some 14% of the Thai people having some Chinese ancestry, Chinese New Year is a big event in the kingdom and people celebrate with friends and family all over the country. This year will be the Year of the Rat and as usual, areas with a big Chinese population will be hosting a range of special events, parades and dragon dances.
The biggest celebrations are normally found in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Nakhon Sawan, Phuket, Trang and Udon Thani. But the most popular party for Chinese New Year takes place in Bangkok’s Chinatown when the main street of Yaowarat turns red from end to end with banners and lanterns. There are dragon parades and acrobatic performances to enjoy as well as stalls selling tasty Chinese treats.
If you are in Bangkok for the New Year, it is traditional to make merit by visiting Wat Mangkon Kamalawat on Charoen Krung Road and pay respect to the images of the Chinese Gods. Many people have their fortune told using kau cim or chien tung sticks, which are shaken from a bamboo case and the first stick to fall out relates to a certain fortune. You can find out if the Year of the Rat will be a lucky one for you.
Thailand’s Chinese New Year 2020 will be held in various major cities with spectacular highlights, including:
Chinese New Year Celebration 2020 at Siam Square
24-26 January – activities include Chinese New Year blessings by Thailand’s Minister of Tourism and Sports and China’s Minister of Culture and Tourism on 24 January, 2020, 17.00 Hrs.: Cultural performances from China (disabled dance troupe from Beijing, dance and musical troupe from Jiangxi, acrobatic troupe from Shanxi, Kung Fu troupe from Henan, dance troupe from Jilin, and dance troupe from Inner Mongolia); venue decorations in Chinese style with an auspicious tunnel and the chance to pay homage to Chinese gods; cooking demonstrations of auspicious food and desserts; Chinese cultural demonstrations including Chinese calligraphy and Xiangqi (Chinese chess), and performances by Thai pop stars.
Chinese New Year Celebration 2020 on Yaowarat Road
25-26 January – The opening ceremony on 25 January will be presided over by Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn together with senior officials from Thailand’s Minister of Tourism and Sports, TAT, and China’s Minister of Culture and Tourism.
The two-day event will feature Thai-Chinese cultural exchange performances including a disabled dance troupe from Beijing and dance and musical troupe from Jiangxi on 25 January, and dance troupe from Jilin on 26 January. TAT will have a booth to hand out its 60th anniversary commemorative coin – the head of the coin is the image of the Golden Buddha of Wat Traimit Withayaram Worawihan. The tail image marks the ‘Year of the Rat zodiac sign for 2020 painted by Mr. Han Meilin, China’s national artist, plus Chinese language inscription wishing all for a happy, prosperous, and safe year.
Other notable events include an art exhibition of zodiac signs by China’s national artist Mr. Han Meilin, from 21 to 27 January, 2020, at the Fashion Hall, Siam Paragon, and from 20 January to 9 February, 2020, at the China Cultural Centre in Bangkok.
On 22 January, there’s a special performance by a disabled dance troupe from Beijing, a CSR activity to inspire people with disabilities in Thailand, at the China Cultural Centre in Bangkok.
Suphan Buri Chinese New Year 2020 at the Dragon Descendants Museum
25-27 January – at the Dragon Descendants Museum with activities include paying respect to the images of the Chinese Gods at night and enjoying cultural performances on ‘dragon descendants’ plus shows by local youth groups and Thai pop stars, and a Chinese food fair.
Ratchaburi Chinatown 2020 on Amarin and Woradech Roads, Amphoe Mueang, Ratchaburi.
24-27 January – activities include a beauty pageant and talent contests, cultural performances by students, light-and-sound presentation, fireworks display, cooking show of longevity noodles – one of the seven lucky foods to eat during CNY, and a Chinese New Year parade.
Chao Pho-Chao Mae Pak Nam Pho Traditional Parade (Nakhon Sawan Chinese New Year)
on Rim Khuean Road, Amphoe Mueang, Nakhon Sawan
18-29 January – 12 days and 12 nights of activities including performances by Thai singers and bands, lucky draws and games, several activities to ward off bad luck according to Chinese belief, and the spectacular procession Chao Pho-Chao Mae Pak Nam Pho and Chao Mae Kuan-im (Guanyin), acrobatic performances, dragon parades, lion dances and Chinese Gods parades.
Chiang Mai Chinatown Chinese New Year on Chiang Moi Road, Witchayanont Road and Lao Jow Alley
24-26 January – cultural performances from China by a dance troupe from Inner Mongolia, beauty pageant and talent contests, lion dances, fire dragon shows and a Chinese food fair.
Hat Yai Chinese New Year at the Srinakorn Foundation School
25-29 January – activities include paying respect to the images of the Chinese Gods, concerts by famous Thai artists, Miss Chinese Hat Yai 2020 and Chinese Kids 2020 contests, open-air cinema, and lucky draws.
Mittraphap Samakee Foundation’s Chinese New Year at the Mittraphap Samakee Foundation, Hat Yai
25 January-3 February – cultural shows including Chinese opera, Thai folk theatre or likay, Manorah dance, and other stage performances by Thai singers and bands, a Chinese New Year parade, a ceremony to ward off bad luck, and a Chinese food fair.
Phuket Retro Chinese New Year at the Phuket Old Town area
30 January-1 February – celebrating Phuket in the years past showcasing Phuket’s charming Sino-Portuguese architecture in the Old Town, cultural performances from China (dance from Jiangxi, acrobatic from Xian, and Kung Fu from Henon), spectacular Chinese New Year parade, colourful lighting and lantern decorations, cooking shows of Phuket’s delicacies, and a food fair.
Udon Thani Chinese New Year on Prajak Silapakom Road
24-26 January – pay respect to the images of Chinese Gods and the principal image of Guanyin – at over eight metres in height, join ceremonies to ward off bad luck, lion dances, beauty pageant and talented kids contests, and a food street fair.
Nakhon Ratchasima Chinese New Year in the area of the Thao Suranari Monument
25-26 January – activities include a walking street, lion and dragon parades, pay respect to the guardian spirits of the city at nine famous shrines, and a Chinese food fair.
Phetchaburi Chinese New Year on Surin Ruechai road, Amphoe Mueang, Phetchaburi
24-25 January – cooking show of longevity noodles – one of the seven lucky foods to eat during CNY, pay respect to the images of Chinese Gods, Chinese cultural performances and arts, as well as lion and dragon dances.
Pattaya Chinese New Year in the area of Pattaya Klang Beach and Pattaya Walking Street
25 January – activities include Thai-Chinese cultural performances, lion and dragon dances, an exhibition on Chinese New Year and concerts by famous Thai singers and bands.
Chinese New Year at Chak Ngaeo Community, Bang Lamung District, Chon Buri
25 January – activities include cultural learning on Chinese opera mask painting at an old opium den and an old Chinese opera theatre, Chinese dance lesson at a local school, lion dances, Chinese calligraphy, and pay respective to the image of the revered Chao Mae Thapthim (the Chinese sea goddess Mazu).
Ko Si Chang Chinese New Year, Amphoe Ko Si Chang
25 January-31 March – pay respect to the image of Ko Si Chang’s revered Chao Pho Khao Yai and the image of Chinese Gods and join ceremonies to ward off bad luck.
Dharma Rasami Maneerat Foundation’s Chinese New Year, Ang Sila, Chon Buri District
25-27 January – a ceremony to pay respect to the principal God of the Dharma at the Rasami Maneerat Foundation and related rituals for good luck.
Trang Chinese New Year in front of Trang City Municipal Office near the Trang Clock Tower
24-25 January – activities include light-and-sound shows, local cultural performances, an exhibition on Trang and variety of Chinese food, beauty pageant, talented kids contests, and a local fair.