Thailand Seeks UNESCO Recognition for Loy Krathong and Muay Thai


BANGKOK (NNT) – Thailand is set to propose the annual Loy Krathong festival and Muay Thai for inclusion in UNESCO’s intangible cultural heritage list. Department of Cultural Promotion Director-General Kowit Phakamas announced that the preparation of data and registration documents for these cultural elements is about 70% complete.

The proposal is expected to receive Cabinet approval by March next year. However, UNESCO’s consideration process for such proposals typically spans 3-5 years. Loy Krathong, a widely celebrated festival in Thailand, occurs on the full moon of the 12th lunar month. It features the releasing of lotus-shaped rafts, known as “krathong”, onto water bodies as a tribute to the Buddha and the water goddess, accompanied by fireworks and traditional dance performances.

For the Loy Krathong submission, the Cultural Promotion Department has been collaborating with the Institute of Thai Studies at Chulalongkorn University to gather information from eight key provinces. The submission to UNESCO will include photos and videos from this year’s celebrations, scheduled for November 27-28.

The department’s next steps include the selection of photos and videos, organizing academic data, and translation into the languages required by UNESCO. Thailand currently has four other cultural elements under UNESCO’s consideration, including the traditional Khon mask dance, Thai massage, folk dance drama Nora, and the Songkran festival. The announcement of the intangible cultural heritage list is expected on December 7 at a meeting in Botswana.

The preceding is a press release from the Thai Government PR Department.

Goongnang Suksawat
Goong Nang is a News Translator who has worked professionally for multiple news organizations in Thailand for many years and has worked with The Pattaya News for more than four years. Specializes primarily in local news for Phuket, Pattaya, and also some national news, with emphasis on translation between Thai to English and working as an intermediary between reporters and English-speaking writers. Originally from Nakhon Si Thammarat, but lives in Phuket and Krabi except when commuting between the three.