City authorities in Chiang Mai have released a schedule of events for this year’s combined Yi Peng and Loy Krathong festivals. Following opening ceremonies scheduled to take place on the evening of the 21st November, there will be a two-day schedule of colourful events and parades guaranteed to offer illuminating insights into the ancient Lanna culture of Chiang Mai and Northern Thailand.
Pre-opening rites and the lighting of candles for Loy Krathong 2018 will take place at the Three Kings’ Monument plaza at 18:00 on the 20th November and will precede a Lanna dance performance. The official launch of Yi Peng celebrations will be held at 18:00 on the 21st at Thapae Gate. Various talent contests and krathong making workshops will be staged on this evening and the following day.
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Chiang Mai Municipality office is the venue for two evenings of cultural shows between 19:00 and 22:00 on the 22nd and 23rd November. Attendees will have the opportunity of floating their krathongs on the River Ping near the same venue. The highlight of every Loy Krathong Festival, the Grand Krathong Parade, will start at 19:00 on the 23rd.
The parade starts at Nawarat Bridge and travels up Thapae Road to Thapae Gate. It then crosses into the Old City before heading to the Three Kings’ Monument plaza. The parade retinues typically features a large number of floats and it can take three hours or more for the last float to reach the Three Kings. A full timetable of Loy Krathong happenings for 2018 has been compiled by the CM108 Chiang Mai Community Online website and a link is provided here.
Loy Krathong is a time for festivity and fun. Two popular Chiang Mai eateries have announced special meals to mark the occasion in 2018. Both the River Market Restaurant and Le Crystal are offering Loy Krathong feasts on the evening of the 22nd November.