Wai Kru Festival in Thailand – A Fascinating Spiritual Journey

An event of profound religious and spiritual significance, the Wai Kru Festival or the Sak Yant Festival claims to bring physical and spiritual protection by way of the many exotic Sak Yant tattoos.

What is the Wai Kru Festival?

An intense experience and one of the famous festivals in Bangkok, the Wai Kru Festival is also known as the Sak Yant Festival. The Wai Kru Festival is not to be confused with the traditional phrase “Wai Kru” that is part of a ritual where students pay gratitude to their teachers.

Tattooing the Devotees

Over 10,000 Buddhist devotees gather at the Wat Bang Phra (temple) in Thailand for the Wai Kru Festival. The tattooists or the monks at the temple draw protective tattoos on the devotees with a single long needle about 18 inches long and 4 millimetres in width. Popular designs include tigers, monkeys and ancient Cambodian script.

Highlights of the Event

Some devotees with protective tattoos are said to enter trances or become possessed by the spirits. The sight of the tattooed devotees acting out the traits of the animals inked on to their bodies is a fascinating experience for visitors. Those on the lookout for such intriguing experiences on their vacation can consider an online Bangkok travel guide or blogs with information on such events such as Travel Bangkok Now.

Aftermath of the Trance

The common belief states that the Sak Yant tattoos are powerful and protect those who wear them from illness and death. The devotees are advised not to consume alcohol if they wish the powers to be effective.

Every March, the Wat Bang Phra temple of Nakhom Pathom, #Thailand, becomes the scene of a powerful celebration, known as the Wat Bang Phra Tattoo Festival. While in most western countries #tattoos are viewed as an art form, in #Thailand, a country with a culture deeply rooted in #spirituality, tattoos are considered more than just skin deep artworks. The traditional Thai tattoos, known as “#SakYant”, are believed to have #magical powers, and people get them done at #temples, for protection against evil #spirits, and as good luck charms. Many members of Thai police, #army, and the underworld think some tattoos have the power to stop bullets and blades from piercing their skin. Each year, tattooed devotees come to #WatBangPhra #temple, a place famous for its tattoo #masters, to pay their respects to the art of Sak Yant, in a special ceremony known as #WaiKhru. Attended by tens of thousands of people, the event becomes quite a spectacle when the #animalspirit possessions begin. #WaiKruFestival – a time for devotees to come back and “re-charge” their #tattoo's magical attributes, and for new ones to be done. One of the many reasons Great Spirit has sent me here. #HigherVibes #HigherVibes2012

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Filled with wanderlust that seeks to explore distant shores and captivated by the colors and vibrancy of exotic cultures, Kanya Mae writes on the beautiful, exciting, and enchanting wonders of the world. She is a writer who not only has a passion for travel, but also has a background in fashion, art and media. Google+

Festivals in Bangkok – The catch of the city

The vibrant and cosmopolitan city of Bangkok is sensational year around with a palette of festivals happening very frequently. Even though the city is taken over by modernism, it is still an emblem of Thai culture for both residents and visitors. In order to enjoy these fabulous festivities, Atrium Bangkok, set in a convenient location, is one of the most fascinating Bangkok city hotels.

To begin with, Chinese New Year, celebrated in Yaowaraj, takes place in January or February. This exhilarating celebration brings life to the official Chinatown with dragon dancers, fanfare, chromatic fireworks and exploding fire crackers. You can wear red clothes and join in with the festivities to feel the spirit of this festival.

Songkran festival, celebrated in April, the warmest month of the year, is the traditional Thai New Year that is usually a time for family reunion. This is a jovial ceremony in the scorching heat that every visitor should partake. During this week of celebration the whole city goes wild with friendly water fights and street parties with the belief to wash away all misfortunes of the past year.

Moon festival and Vegetarian festival, celebrated in September or October, are delightful with yummy gourmet foods lined up on colourful shelf displays. Definitely, try out the moon cakes during the moon festival and the variety of vegan dishes from sweet cakes to noodle soups sold in temporary rows of stalls in Chinatown, the gathering point for the festivities of the Vegetarian festival!

Furthermore, Loy Krathong, one of the most picturesque traditional festivals in the country takes place in November. Beautiful lotus shaped rafts, decorated with candles, incense and flowers are released onto water by people gathering around lakes, rivers and canals to pay respects to the goddess of water. The sight of thousands of Krathongs is truly enticing and magical.

Celebrating Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Bangkok is also captivating as in any other country. Therefore, swipe out into the city and let the spirit of festivities happening all year round make the best out of your visit in this paradise!

Chandrishan Williams is a travel writer who writes under the pen name, Caleb Falcon. He specializes in writing content based on the many exciting world adventures that await intrepid travellers.