Thingyan is Myanmar’s New Year Water Festival (also known as Songkran in Thailand) and falls around mid-April. It is a Buddhist festival celebrated over a period of four days, culminating in the New Year. The splashing and throwing of water signifies a washing away of sins and bad luck from the past year, a cleansing in preparation for the new year.
We went to Thingyan in Mandalay and it was awesome!
This is easily the biggest street party we’ve ever been to. It goes on for blocks around the Grand Palace. Dance and water station line the street while crowds dance and walk their way down the street. The video is purely street view and gives you a good idea of what it’s like to be in the thick of it.
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There’s always a dry-ish side of the street, or places you can take refuge if you get tired of getting sprayed down while rave dancing. The atmosphere throughout the Thingyan water festival is true revelry and good natured. People in Mandalay were thrilled to share their holiday with us.
Almost all of Mandalay shuts down for this 4-day street party, with only a few stores remaining open. Water stations are all around town and can range from a full blown dance and hose set-up, like our hotel had, to a couple of kids with a bucket of water and some cups that refuse to let you pass without a proper dousing and washing away of bad luck.
Even the cops don’t mind people throwing water on them. That one surprised me. All in good fun.
If you get the chance to go to Thingyan, do it. Especially in Mandalay it’s an awesome party. Just make sure to take as little with you as possible, put everything in plastic zipper bags, relax and have fun.
Right now, Thingyan in Mandalay stands as our favorite giant street party ever.
When you go, be sure to leave yourself plenty of time, before or after the water festival, to see the sights around Mandalay. There’s all sorts of cool stuff to see, like U Bein bridge, the Snake Pagoda, the World’s Largest Book and the Grand Palace.
More on Thingyan: https://www.teamhazardridesagain.com/thingyan-myanmar-water-festival-video/
Hope you can make it to Thingyan one day.