The kingdom of Thailand is a natural gateway to Indochina, Myanmar and Southern China with its unique location in the heart of Southeast Asia. Bangkok is the capital of Thailand and also the center of political, commercial, industrial and cultural activities. The people of Thailand speak and write the local Thai language, which is not easy for the outsiders to comprehend. Therefore English and other European languages are mostly spoken in most hotels, shops and restaurants in major tourist destinations. The tourists would find it really convenient that the road and street signs are all in Thai-English.
The Thai calendar is based on the Western calendar and thus the year is divided into days, weeks and months. The years are numbered according to the Buddhist era (BE), which is believed to have commenced 543 years prior to the Christian era. Consequently all the Thai names are used for these units in the calendar.
Holidays in Thailand are all linked with the religious and agricultural traditions. Holidays of Thailand are all based on the lunar calendar and so the dates of each holiday at Thailand keep on changing every year.
The lunar calendar is oriented upon the phase of the moon. Each month of is related to a lunation so that the day of the month implies the moon phase. And if the lunar calendar takes into consideration seasons, still it is known as the lunisolar calendar.
The national public holidays in Thailand are as follows:
- New Year’s Day: January 1
- Makha Bucha Day: late January to early March
- Chakri Day: April 6
- Songkran Day: April 13
- National Labour Day: May 1
- Coronation Day: May 5
- Visakha Bucha Day: May
- Asanha Bucha Day: July
- Khao Phansa (Buddhist Lent): July
- HM the Queen’s Birthday: August 12
- Chulalongkorn Day: October 23
- HM the King’s Birthday: December 5
- Constitution Day: December 10
- New Year’s Eve: December 31