How To Celebrate Labor Day in Thailand Like a Local

Labor Day in Thailand is a Cultural Spectacle!

Once you know how to celebrate Labor Day in Thailand you’ll be doing it like a local! Wondering how to celebrate Labor Day in Thailand? We’ve got your back. Labor Day is a laid back, fun holiday which presents a great opportunity to get to know the country a little better, so read on to find out the deal. Thailand’s public holidays are always a blast and you should definitely plan your trip around them!

What is Labor Day anyway?

Depending on where you come from in the world, you might be pretty familiar with Labor Day. This isn’t just a Thai invention, but rather an international celebration of the benefits of the labor movement and trade unions. It’s actually celebrated in 80 different countries around the world so joining in here makes you part of something much bigger!

Started 1886, the date is the result of a slight hijacking of the celebration of the start of spring. Astute organizers spotted that a nice, happy springtime festival might be the perfect time to demand an 8-hour working day and just like that, Labor Day was born!

Put it in the diary

Labor Day falls on the 1st of May every year, but if the 1st happens to be a weekend day then the celebration moves to the following Monday. A holiday just isn’t a holiday if you don’t get a day off work after all! In Thailand, the date falls very close to the nationally important Coronation Day on 5th of May. This means that every few years the whole thing merges into one super long weekend of fun!

Celebrating Labor Day in Thailand Like a Local

The way that Labor Day is celebrated across the country changes from place to place, but there are a few common things that you can look forward to wherever you are. The big event is normally a daytime parade that is both a cultural spectacular and a good old-fashioned street party all at the same time. We’re talking dancers in traditional costumes, elephants wearing colorful decorations and live music from marching bands following on behind.

You can watch from the sidelines as the procession weaves its way past, or if you’re feeling brave then jump on in! There are often sections of the parade made up of enthusiastic amateurs and you’re welcome to get in on the act too.

Not Just Daytime Fun Times

Celebrating Labor Day isn’t just about daytime activities though, there are also a ton of things to do in the evenings too. That probably sounds familiar if you’ve spent any amount of time in Thailand! Labor Day isn’t quite as crazy as Songkran but it does do a good line in live music gigs, cooking competitions, fun fairs and special food nights in restaurants. Check out what’s going on locally and throw yourself into a few things!

The Best Place to Celebrate Labor Day in Thailand  

One of the liveliest places to spend Labor Day is Chiang Mai. The daytime procession starts at the Three Kings Monument, winds around the Old City and ends at the Tha Phae Gate. It’s then followed by an open-air cooking competition where you might get lucky and be asked to taste and judge some of the best som tam and laap you’ll ever have eaten! After that, it will probably be time for a dip in the Bodega Hostel pool before heading out to catch some live music around the moat.

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