Thailand Celebrates the King’s Birthday

December 5 is considered to be an auspicious day in the Thai Kingdom, for it commemorates the birthday of their beloved King, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The monarch, who turned 84 this year, is a widely-revered icon in the country, and is seen as a symbol of unity and the unwavering support of the Thais to the monarchy.

Bhumibol Adulyadej, or officially known as Rama IX, is the current King of Thailand. Having reigned since 9 June 1946, he is the world's longest-serving current head of state and the longest-reigning monarch in Thai history. He is considered to be the father of the nation and is credited for a lot of achievements, including the policy of economic self-sufficiency.

Celebrations

The King’s Birthday is an important day for Thailand, during which the Thai people express their heartfelt affection for their king.

On the morning of the king’s birthday many people visit temples to make merit, while festive celebrations are held across the kingdom throughout the day.

On the birthday of the King of Thailand, a special alms-giving ceremony at temples in the morning is followed by a huge festival of music and culture at Sanam Luang in Bangkok. Yellow flags and lights decorate buildings and homes all over Thailand. Bangkok, Thailand’s capital, is decorated with exuberant flower arrangements, especially along Ratchadamnoen Avenue. Religious ceremonies are held countrywide with people praying for the king’s well-being. During the evening there are elaborate fireworks displays in the skies of Bangkok while thousands of people fill the streets wearing yellow t-shits to celebrate the King’s birthday. People travel from all cities around Thailand to catch a glimpse of the monarch, even if only to see the king’s car in the middle of his motorcade.

In civil administrations, there are specific gatherings for the King's birthday. On this occasion, civil servants wear their most beautiful clothes. Then they listen to Buddhist sermons and to their director's speech.

The King’s birthday is also National Father’s Day, and Thais gather with their families to honor their fathers and grandfathers as well

About Thailand

Thailand, officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. About 75% of the population is ethnically Thai, 14% is of Chinese origin, and 3% is ethnically Malay;[1] the rest belong to minority groups including Mons, Khmers and various hill tribes. The country's official language is Thai. The primary religion is Buddhism, which is practiced by around 95% of all Thais. The largest city is Bangkok, the capital, which is also the country's centre of political, commercial, industrial and cultural activities. Thailand experienced rapid economic growth between 1985 and 1995 and is a newly industrialized country with tourism, due to well-known tourist destinations such as Ayutthaya, Pattaya, Bangkok, Phuket, Krabi, Chiang Mai, and Ko Samui, and exports contributing significantly to the economy.