Sand pagoda competition celebrates Thai cultural heritage in Pattaya

Contestants work on their masterpieces, demonstrating precision and creativity in constructing a sand ‘sleeping dragon’ utilising natural materials to capture the essence of tradition and artistic expression.

PATTAYA, Thailand – In a celebration of Thai cultural heritage, the activity field of Wat Prachum Kongkha Temple in Banglamung District was abuzz with creativity and craftsmanship on April 18 as participants gathered for a grand sand pagoda construction competition.

Organized into two categories – Beauty and Creativity – the competition aimed to uphold the cherished tradition of building sand pagodas, synonymous with the festive spirit of the Songkran Festival. Under the Beauty Category, participants showcased their skills in sand sculpture, cultural expression, pagoda composition, and the use of natural materials. Meanwhile, the Creativity Category rewarded contestants for their innovative approaches, uniqueness, and precision in crafting intricate sand structures.

With a generous cash prize pool, the competition ignited fervent interest and enthusiasm among community members, drawing participants from all walks of life. Winners were awarded cash prizes totalling 6,000 Baht for the champion, 5,000 Baht for the first runner-up, and 4,000 Baht for the second runner-up, across both categories.

The tradition of sand pagoda construction, deeply ingrained in Thai culture, carries profound historical and spiritual significance. Originally rooted in religious practice, it has evolved into a symbol of communal celebration and artistic expression during Songkran. The event not only highlighted the participants’ craftsmanship but also served as a platform to preserve and promote Thailand’s rich cultural heritage.

Participants showcase their skills in sand sculpture, crafting intricate pagodas adorned with cultural motifs and symbols, at the grand competition in Banglamung District.