Families and lovers flocked to area beaches and lakes under a full moon as Pattaya celebrated Loy Krathong.
Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome opened events on both Jomtien and Pattaya beaches Nov. 22, joining city officials in floating their own flower, candle and incense krathongs.
The Jomtien event sponsored by the Jomtien Boating Club featured dancing, art and Thai cultural performances. In Pattaya, folk singer Jintara Poonlarb provided the entertainment while Pattaya officials presented prizes for the annual krathong decoration contest.
Pattaya School No. 5 won the primary school category and 15,000 baht with schools 4, 9 and 3 coming in second through fourth with prizes of 6,000-12,000 baht each.
Pattaya School No. 5 also won the secondary-school contest, taking back another 15,000 baht. Schools 4 and 11 places second and third, winning 12,000 and 9,000 baht, respectively.
The public competition was won by the Yep Roy Koy Pradith Team, which took home 15,000 baht. The Ruan Thai Team took second and 9,000 baht while the Pattaya City Schools Team won third and the Royal Cliff Hotel fourth. Dusit Thani College’s Pattaya campus won an honorable mention.
Naklua, which traditionally has hosted Pattaya’s official event, did get its own city-backed celebration at Loy Krathong, with Deputy Mayor Banlue Kullavanijaya appearing there late in the evening. It, too, featured music, dance and cultural performances.
While many attended the staged celebrations, most people were content to make their own party, with lovers going to the seaside or lakes at temples across the city on what is considered the Thai version of Valentine’s Day.
On beaches and lakesides, couples and families lit candles, made wishes and launched their own krathongs on a journey they hope will bring the good luck.