December 5 commemorated as Thailand National Day and Father’s Day

December 5 is considered as a special day in the Kingdom of Thailand as it was declared by the Royal Thai Government as the National Day of the country. This also commemorates the Birthday Anniversary of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, and Thailand’s Father’s Day. Furthermore, 5th of December each year also marks a highly important day when the global community celebrates the “World Soil Day” as declared by the United Nations General Assembly, in recognition of the remarkable achievements of His Majesty the late King in this field.

Known as Rama IX, he reigned Thailand since 9 June 1946 until his death on 13 October 2016, making him the longest-reigning monarch ever in Thailand's history. Despite being a constitutional monarch, and not legally being allowed a role in politics, Bhumibol also made several decisive interventions in the Thai political sphere and has been credited with helping facilitate Thailand's transition to democracy in the 1990s.

History

Previously, the national day of Thailand is celebrated on June 24 to celebrate the change from absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy on June 24, 1932. On 21 May 1960, Field Marshal Sarit Thanarat, was appointed Prime Minister and another change was issued on the date to celebrate the birthday of the King of Thailand. Many factors were considered for the change, including the fact that many monarchies around the world such as England, Japan, Sweden, etc. celebrate their national days during the birthdays of their monarch. Therefore, since the year 1960, Thailand has considered the birthday of His Majesty the King, which falls on the 5th of December every year, as the "National Day".

The holiday itself is a colourful affair. Buildings across Thailand will display flags, bunting and portraits of the late King, while around the Grand Palace area of Bangkok, the streets are decorated with thousands of marigolds.

Marigolds are chosen for their colour, as yellow is the predominant colour of the celebrations; as the King was born on a Monday and in Thailand, yellow is the colour for Monday.

In the evening, the streets around Ratchadamnoen and Sanam Luang are closed to traffic and many people come to watch celebratory fireworks displays.

Videos

[khunbaobao] (2013 January 21). Thai King Bhumibol's 85th Birthday - 5 December 2012.flv [video file]. Retrieved from: https://youtu.be/OG_7fqhSLlQ

AP Archive. (2015 July 21). Thailand: King Bhumbol Birthday Celebrations [video file]. Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIQY_LXRepA

References:

  1. Office Holidays (2018). Public Holidays in Thailand in 2018. Retrieved from: https://www.officeholidays.com/countries/thailand/king-bhumibols-birthday.php
  2. Royal Thai Embassy (2017). Remarks by H.E. Mr. Kallayana Vipattipumiprates, Ambassador of Thailand on the National Day, 5 December 2017. Retrieved from: http://www.thaiembassy.org/tehran/en/news/6309/84448-The-National-Day-of-the-Kingdom-of-Thailand-on-5th.html
  3. todayTH (9 August 2013). Thailand National Day. Retrieved from: http://www.todayth.com/%E0%B8%A7%E0%B8%B1%E0%B8%99%E0%B8%8A%E0%B8% B2%E0%B8%95%E0%B8%B4%E0%B9%84%E0%B8%97%E0%B8%A2.html.