Chinese New Year greeting and feeding the dragon, Thailand
It is difficult to express how big a yearly festival and annual migration the Chinese New Year represents. Traditionally every conceivable mode of transport is used to get home to your birthplace to catch up with your family and renew. See below for more on the Chinese New Year festival) Nowadays many see this holiday as a welcome break from work and want to get out of town and enjoy some down time. For whatever the reason, availability in the hotels is difficult.
Size Matters in Thailand when it comes to hotel availability.
One trick that has worked for me on these holidays through the years is, aim for size. If you are late to book a hotel or resort, if it has more than 150 rooms you are more likely to have availability than the more boutique type hotel / resorts where their 50-70 rooms get snapped up early.
Tips for availability around Thailand.
Department stores are dressed for Chinese New Year Thailand
Availability in Bangkok Hotels
If you are arriving into Bangkok there will always be somewhere to stay as Bangkok has more hotel rooms space than all of India. However, to get something you really want might not be so easy. For sure if you want a room down near Yaorawat Rd Chinatown it might be impossible unless you are booking months in advance. For most people a bit of cunning is needed. If you check you maps you can choose to stay away from Yaowarat say in a district like Sukhumvit where you might want to look at the 5 star Plaza Athenee Bangkok, 4 star Amari Boulevard Hotel or the 3 star Ambassador Bangkok.
Plaza Athenee Bangkok during Chinese new Year (CNY) Thailand
Phuket Hotel Availability
There is a large Chinese community here and there are many Chinese Nationals who come here to celebrate Chinese New Year. Most of the key Chinese temples are in Phuket town and on the road up to the airport and out at Chern Talay near the Laguna Resorts.
Local Chinese Temple art work Thailand
The trick for availability is the large resort town of Patong where you might look at the larger resorts of 5 star Millennium Resort Patong Phuket, 4 star Phuket Graceland Resort And Spa or Amari Coral Beach and 3 star Sunset Beach Resort or Poppa Palace.
Phuket Graceland Resort during Chinese new Year Thailand
Other areas you might consider are down in the far south, hotels and resorts in Kata Beach or Nai harn Beach.
Phi Phi Island Hotel availability
Primarily this does not have many Chinese Thai's working here but thge Phi Phi Hotel group is run but a Chinese family from Had Yai. Likely availability will be at 4 star Phi Phi Island Cabana Hotel and the 2 star Phi Phi Hill Resort.
Phi Phi Hill Resort at Chinese New Year Thailand
Samui Hotel availability
Chaweng is the main beach town for Samui and here you will often find some availability so look at hotels like 5 star New Star Beach Resort, 4 star Chaweng Regent Beach Resort and 3 star Chaweng Cove Beach Resort or Baan Kao Hua Jook Boutique Villas And Serviced Apartments.
New Star Beach Resort during Chinese New Year Thailand
Chinese New Year Dates (CNY dates)
New to the Chinese New Year?
The Chinese New Year celebration is about the family and ancestors. It's a celebration of all those who have come before you and brought you to this time, blessed to be surrounded by family. Chinese New Year is a quiet day to be with family and maybe visit the extended family.
The head of the family will lead the everybody to the shrine where they will give thanks to their ancestors. The family will offer food to the family ancestors and pray for them. Interestingly the food will have meaning so if an uncle loved belly of pork there might be a small dish of this among the sweet cakes. To the outside world this might seem a random collection of food types but the symbolism is a very strong and binding gesture that keeps the notion of family at the forefront of Chinese belief system.
Chinese New Year offerings to the ancestors
Leting off fire crackers is very important to Chinese people to ward off bad spirits
Incense is lit and used in part while bowing 3 times at the ancestral shrine and bowing towards the family elders. This sign if respect is in keeping with the day#'s ceremony. Only after these acts have been performed can the celebrations for Chinese New Year continue. The Chinese feast day is the biggest day of the year.
New Years Eve
The Chinese New Years Eve celebrations are famous for colour noise and offerings on the street. Legend has at that a strange and exotic beast called ' Nien' would come and ravage the streets and town so Chinese people placed offerings decorated the house with red, wore red and lit firecracker to ward off this evil.
Vibrant Colour surrounding the Chinese New year Celebrations ThailandDuring the New Years Eve celebrations, adults will hand red envelopes 'ang pao' the the children. Theses money presents are always of great delight to young and old, giver and receiver. Thai Chinese communities will set off firecrackers in their thousands and the noise and colour is immense. Bangkok Chinatown along Yaowarat Rd will have dragon dances and acrobat processions all day and night and the restaurants will be packed with people celebrating.