Beeswax Castle Festival : Sakon Nakhon, Thailand

22 - 26 October 2007
Venue: Suan Phrasi Nakharin and Sanam Ming Muang,
Sakon Nakhon province

This impressive festival is held in Sakon Nakhon, a northeastern province of Thailand, in celebration of the end of the annual Buddhist Lent (known in Thai as Ok Phansa). It is held on the full moon day of the 11th lunar month, which falls on 26 October this year. But the festival will last from 22 to 26 October.

According to the legend, when Khmers governed Nonghan town (Sakon Nakhon at present), King Suwanphingkharat ordered his royal servants to make beeswax castles on the occasion of Ok Phansa Day to be carried in the procession and then dedicated to Choeng Chum Temple (now Phra That Choeng Chum Woramahawihan Temple). Since that time, the Beeswax Castle Festival has been held as a traditional event annually.

A beeswax castle is made of the trunk of a banana plant, which is cut into the shape of a castle and decorated with beeswax flowers. Apart from beeswax castles, the procession also includes ensembles of musicians playing gamelans, gongs, and drums, as well as groups of men and women each carrying a tray with saffron robes and useful articles for monks on it. After walking in procession round the temple 3 times, they present the wax castles to the chedi containing the Buddha’s relics.

Nowadays, the wax castles are more beautifully decorated with a greater variety of patterns than the past. The processions are also more colourful and include cars instead of carts, which were used in former times.

Apart from the exquisite procession (25 Oct) and long-boat races (22 Oct), the festival features a bunch of interesting activities such as light & sound show in honour of HM the King’s 80th Birthday Anniversary, Sakon Nakhon’s delicious food fair, Phalaeng dinner, beeswax castle making demonstration, and much more.

For more information, please contact
Tourism Authority of Thailand Northeastern Office Region: 4
Tel: +66 (0) 4251 3490 to 2