Songkran Festival is well known among tourists who visit Thailand in April, which is the hottest month. It is a must for everyone to join this festival. What they do during this long holiday is splashing clean water (sometime with a few drop of Thai perfume) to each other to reduce the heat of the summer air. For Thais, Songkran is more than the water splashing festival; it is Thailand’s former New Year day. So, we take this holiday as an opportunity to make merit at the temples and visit our respective relatives. Songkran Celebrations will be held throughout the country. If you’re ready to get wet, take a look on the following schedule and find the place to enjoy the festival.


Date: 10-15 April 2009
Venue: The 9 Royal Temples and around the Rattanakosin Island

Songkran Celebrations of the 4 Regions

Bathing Buddha images from the 4 regions, local food and dessert making demonstrations, and cultural shows and various forms of entertainment, opening ceremony at Temple of the Reclining Buddha 10 April from 18.00-21.00 hrs

Paying worship at the 9 nine royal temples around the Rattanakosin Island
10-15 April 2009 (9.00-18.00 hrs)

Wat Phra Sri Rattanasasadaram (Wat Phra Kaeo), Wat Phra Chetuphon (Wat Pho), Wat Suthat, Wat Saket, Wat Bowonniwet, Wat Chanasongkram, Wat Rakang, Wat Arun (Wat Chaeng), and Wat Kalayanamitr

Water splashing in traditional Thai dress (Khao San Road)
4-15 April 2009 (17.00-18.00 hrs)

Banglamphu Community Songkran Activities at Santi Chaiprakarn Park, Phra Athit Road
11-13 April 2009

For more information, please contact :

The Events Planning Division, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT)

Tel. +66 (0) 2250 5500 ext. 3470-3

TAT Call Centre 1672



Tour Programme : Family Visit to Nostalgic Ratchaburi
Dated : 28-29 Mar 09

This Thailand Travel Programme will lead you to Wat Khanon, whose Nang Yai Shadow Play recently won a UNESCO Award. Apart from this, Siam Cultural Park, Chet Samian Market, Wat Khlong Swannakhiri and Ban Khu Bua's Jipathaphan Museum are included in the programme.

Ticket Prices
Bt 2,700 each (Double room)
Bt 3,100 each (Single room)

Remark : inclusive of transfer, 1-night accommodation, 4 meals, snack, coordination fee, etc.

Those who are interested in booking seats can get the booking form from TAT Head Office on Phetchaburi Road, Bangkok, tel: 0 2250 5500 Ext. 2105, 2115-9 and reserve the seats directly. For further details, please contact: TAT Call Centre 1672.

The Story of Nang Yai
Shadow Puppet Drama at Wat Khanon, Ratchaburi, Thailand

Nang Yai Shadow Puppet Drama performances possibly already existed during the Sukhothai era. Certainly they were a leading form of entertainment during the Ayutthaya era. This typical Thai performing art remained popular throughout the early Rattanakosin era till at least the reign of King Chulalongkorn (Rama V).

The Nang Yai Shadow Puppet Drama at Wat Khanon was first established during the reign of King Chulalongkorn. It now is the only important location for this form of entertainment in Thailand. However, the puppets are still meticulously maintained and produced, and the performers retain their high standards. The drama group from Wat Khanon performs throughout Thailand. The most popular drama performed is the Ramakien.

To perform a puppet drama, the essential constituents are : a suitable venue (transparent screen and lighting), puppet figures, a musical ensemble, narrators and recitors, and of course the puppeteers and the story line.
Creating the puppet figures is an artform all by itself. Most of the puppets are created from cowhide. The more important figures however require skin of other animals such as leopard skin, bear skin etc.

Wat Khanon in Ratchaburi province now also houses a nicely constructed Nang Yai Exhibition Hall. In an attractive way, quite a few puppets are on display.
Nang Yai Shadow Puppet Drama can be contacted at 03-223 3386, if you want to inquire about performances.



You can experience with unique and exotic spa treatments in Patong Beach at Phuket, Thailand. Massage and spa programs reflect the beauty, spirit and traditions of those ancient times and the soul and ritual of Thai culture.

The therapist performing a varied and truly relaxing holistic aroma massage for the body face and feet using essential oils followed with the body scrub using sea salt and almond. Finishing with a treatment Thai facial using Thai herbs and mud combined with a scalp massage to make you feel good. After your treatment time we serve you a ginger tea.


Thai Oriental :
A Thai style massage for the whole body. Using sweet almond oil, the muscle tissue is warmed and relaxed ideal for a first time treatment.

60 minutes / 400 baht
120 minutes / 700 baht

Swedish :
A full body massage to relax aching muscles, stimulate circulation and assist in the removal of toxins. Pressure can be light or firm.

60 minutes / 700 baht
120 minutes / 1,200 baht

Aroma Massage :
A free-style therapeutic massage using an essential oil infused blend with a variety of massage techniques. Adapted to suit your body. A perfect treatment for the undecided.

60 minutes / 700 baht
120 minutes (including the face) / 1,200 baht

Foot Massage :
A pressure point massage applied to zones on the feet to stimulate the body own healing and balancing process, can relieve pain, reduce stress and improve circulation.

60 minutes / 400 baht


A Spa hotel in Thailand is picked by Expedia as the perfect location for rest and relaxation.

The Mangosteen Resort & Spa, Thailand

Overlooking beaches and islands, this boutique resort set in the tropical gardens of southern Phuket offers over 40 individually designed private villas (all with sea views), a huge infinity pool surrounded by 14 waterfalls, a day spa and a fitness centre.

The Mangosteen Resort & Spa is the most romantic Boutique Resort in Phuket, a perfect hideaway for a relaxing holiday. The unique secluded hillside location offers unparalleled views over 4 bays, Phuket town, mountains and many surrounding Islands! 41 Villa rooms and one Family Suite have been tastefully designed by our artist's team for ultimate comfort, relaxing atmosphere and privacy. Outside garden bathrooms with big rain showers, private Jacuzzis, comfortable terraces with hammock and plenty of romantic decorations will let you forget all the pressure of working life.

The therapists at the exclusive spa will pamper you with various rejuvenating treatments and massage therapies combining Asian with Western techniques. A short ride with free shuttle will bring you to Nai Harn Beach, Phuket’s best beach in a National Park.

The extra large pool with its beautiful sea views is filled with specially treated healthy water.

The Mangosteen Restaurant with its well tempered underground Wine Cellar, serves a fine blend of Asian and Western cuisine. Mediterranean food with Asian tastes and original Thai specialties with lots of fresh herbs from our gardens.

The meeting room is unique in Phuket with beautiful views and all high tech facilities for up to 60 people. Weddings, parties or seminars can be hosted in total privacy.

Expedia’s pick of the Top Ten Spa Hotels around the world
The official site of The Mangosteen Resort & Spa



The Wat Pho Massage School is one of many schools that train people in the art of Thai massage. This school is probably the best known around Thailand as well as outside the country, but the thing that attracted me to this school was the flexible schedule of class offerings. There are three classes offered for massage, Traditional Thai Massage, Foot Massage, and Therapeutic Acupressure Massage (a.k.a. Advanced Thai Medical Massage Therapy).

The teachers at Wat Pho are conditioned to foreigners. Unfortunately, there are many foreigners who come to this school simply to spend some time and money to earn the certificate, but don't take the instruction seriously. Nevertheless, the teachers are extremely eager to train the students who are serious about learning massage.

Here are some helpful tips to get good training at Wat Pho Massage School:

* REMEMBER: The certificate you receive at the successful completion of a class does not replace the training required in your country
* Come early to register on the day you wish to start the course (around 8 - 8:30 a.m.)
* Bring cash (8500 Baht for General Thai Massage)

* Finish the course in as short of time as possible (full time studying). This will help you get matched with a serious partner.
* Come showered and sober.
* Bring a pen or pencil to take notes on the materials they give you. Good notes are critical to remembering the methods when you have returned home.

General Thai Massage Course

To teach the right position of massager, ethics, client's position, caution and rule of massaging. Say to relieve fatique, muscular cramping and nervous tension. To make muscle and joints supple. To stimulate the blood and lymph circulation for physical fitness improvement. To improve body immunity, for antiaging, and longevity. This course takes 30 hours.



Getting a massage should be a thing to do when travelling Phuket. Massage in Phuket is a great way to relax after a long day of diving, touring or sailing.

Massage is an ancient and traditional form of healing derived from Ayurvedic medicine and a Thai massage in Phuket is incredibly inexpensive compared to the west. Also, it is an ancient Thai art created to make you feel relaxed and rejuvenated.

Massage shops in Phuket are found all over the island but are more concentrated in the tourist areas such as Patong and Kata. The Nai Harn area also has a large number of massage places, many of which also have saunas on site.

In Phuket Town, relaxing with massage is more concentrated at the larger spas. These tend to be more expensive but the cost of a massage usually includes a spa and herbal sauna as well. All of Phuket’s beaches are dotted with small beachfront massage stalls. There is something special about receiving a therapeutic Thai massage while staring out at the white sands and deep blue Andaman Sea.

A massage in Phuket usually costs about 200 baht per hour at one of the smaller, out of the way shops and can go as high as 1000 baht for the full royal treatment at one of the upmarket health spas. On the beach, expect to pay 300-350 baht an hour – there are plenty of ladies wandering up and down the beachfront offering these under the shade of the trees.

Some of the favourite massage parlours in Phuket are:

Gae’s Massage and Sauna: located on Saiyuan Road, Nai Harn, this place is popular with locals and offers massages and saunas in a charmingly rustic location.

Phuket Royal Spa and Massage: is an upmarket establishment in the Sam Kong area of Phuket City. Massage services are excellent and include an herbal sauna. 367/63-64 Yaowarat Rd. Tel: 076 236663

Hutavat Thai Massage: is one of the least dodgy massage parlors in Patong and has a quiet, clean and professional atmosphere. 45/12 Phrabaramee Rd.

Phuket Herbal Sauna: offers a good value for the money and is one of the better herbals saunas on the island. 2/3 moo 8, Chalong Road. Tel: 076 280910

Boo’s Original Thai Massage: is one of the oldest traditional Thai massage parlors on Phuket. 78/12 Moo 3 Kamala Main Rd. Tel: 076 385821




Krabi is a coastal province in Southern Thailand. This Southern province covers an area of 4,709 square kilometers and is located 814 kilometres south of Bangkok.
Krabi’s major attractions are located largely along its extensive coastline, which contains several well-known beaches and bays, and numerous offshore tropical islands.

Canoeing One of several eco-tourism activities available in Krabi is sea-canoeing, and there are few better ways to thoroughly enjoy the spectacular scenery than by drifting leisurely amongst the limestone karsts. This is perhaps the best way to explore Krabi's countless inlets and deserted beaches, allowing travellers to discover the true magic of the area at their own pace.
Kayaking Kayaking is available in the waters off Krabi and Phang-nga provinces, which boast some of the most spectacular seascapes and marine life anywhere. The sport is accessible to beginners and veterans alike, since operators offer training at the start of the trip. The sea-kayaking centre is at Ao Nang, which blends the rugged appeal of rocky outcrops with the serene beauty of beaches and crystal-clear water. Off its shore lie limestone outcrops honeycombed with caves and hollows and fringed by mangrove forests.
Canoe and kayak rentals are available at many of the guesthouses in the Ao Nang area, and guides are also available to lead you through the myriad of small, deserted islands.

Snorkelling & Diving Dive shops provide mask, snorkel and fins for hire at around 150 baht a set per day. You will probably have to pay a deposit of around 500 baht. They also offer you dive trips to, and education about, some of the most spectacular destinations in Southern Thailand.

Biking Mountain bikes cost around 80 baht per day to hire and can be found around Ao Nang. The terrain is spectacular and this is a great, and healthy, way to take in the most spectacular scenery.

Rock Climbing Every year literally thousands of climbers come to Krabi specifically to challenge themselves on the famous limestone karsts, and most will agree that it was well worth the trip. There are over 150 challenging pegged routes, concentrated primarily on the Phranang peninsula, between Hat Tham Phranang and Hat Rai Le. These routes are typically in the mid to high difficulty range, with numerous overhangs, and sheer limestone faces. However, there are also several beginner climbs, so that even the novice climber can experience the thrill of climbing. Equipment rentals, instruction, and guides are all available.