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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Chinese New Year (CNY) hotel availability in Thailand

Chinese New Year Hotel availability is of key concern to all people looking for accommodation in Thailand during this yearly festival. Whether you are coming in from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore or from Europe there can be major issues of availability in Thailand during this time. You should read the tips here if you are having trouble with getting hotel accommodation.

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 , 4 star or the 3 star .

Plaza Athenee Bangkok during Chinese new Year (CNY) Thailand

The other tip for Bangkok is follow the MRT (Mass Rail Transit ) line and stay near this as you are then close to an awful lot of Bangkok. This will cut your travel times down between points of interest.

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 , 4 star or and 3 star or .

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 group is run but a Chinese family from Had Yai. Likely availability will be at 4 star and the 2 star .
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 , 4 star and 3 star or .

New Star Beach Resort during Chinese New Year Thailand

Chinese New Year Dates (CNY dates)

2012 January 23 Dragon
2013 February 10 Snake
2014 January 31 Horse
2015 February 19 Sheep
2016 February 8 Monkey
2017 January 28 Rooster
2018 February 16 Dog
2019 February 5 Pig

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 Thailand

During 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.

Sale of Chinese New Year Decorations Thailand

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