Christmas Celebration in the Amazing Thailand

Friday December 1, 2017

Being a Buddhist country, Thailand isn’t officially celebrating Christmas. Regular Thai schools or work offices are open as usual on Christmas Day. Most Thai families do not celebrate Christmas with tree, decorations and gift-giving on December 25th but as the years go by, more and more locals, particularly in Bangkok, are acknowledging the holiday season. That means for visitors and foreign residents here in the city’s capital, “Christmas spirit” can still be felt even away from home.

As mid-November rolls, every huge shopping mall in Rachaprasong and Sukhumvit areas start decking out their colorful and sparkly decorations. Central World shopping mall usually has a gigantic Christmas tree and colorful themed decorations on its front open space area with mini-concerts and flea market stalls where people can walk, shop or just sit while eating, relaxing or simply people watching. There is also a beer garden where friends can hang out for drinks.

Gaysorn Village, another very popular high-end mall here in Bangkok also has its own Christmas themed activities called “Shop-Share-Chill” that includes huge shopping deals, charity thru donations, chilling on their various entertainment and delicious tastes from many food trucks and a grand Christmas tree lighting event to mark the season.

MBK and Siam Discovery malls likewise decorated their walking plaza with lots of lights, Christmas tree and other traditional decors.

While Siam Paragon has its magical retail shopping experience for shoppers and patrons especially children, for opening the “Harry Potter: Christmas in the Wizarding World” exhibition where fans can experience a one of its kind retail shopping and wander around the series’ most popular venues like Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley, similar to the one in Universal Studios Orlando. Pop-up shop like Ollivanders Wand Shop, Honeydukes, Madam Puddifoot’s Shop and Dervish & Banges which sells magical tools and wands are included. There is also an interactive Quaffle Toss game where guests can score a goal. Of course the place is also Instagram perfect with selection of background options from the films Harry Potter and The Fantastic Beasts. Throughout the shopping experience, animated windows will bring the iconic shops from the films to life, delighting fans and shoppers alike. The exhibition runs from December 17 2017 until March 2 2018.

Then down the Sukhumvit road, newer shopping malls like Central Embassy, Terminal 21, Emporium and the Emquartier also have their own showcase of magnificent Christmas “getups” and free concerts or celebrityhosted shows. We can also expect Santa Claus around the town to delight the children.

Bangkok being the most-popular shopping destination in the world, of course not only offers great holiday displays but shopping experience as well. Those shopping malls mentioned offers even more promotions and huge discounts to take advantage with during this occasion. Gift wrapping also comes in convenient since most of them offer free wrapping service for all your purchases for gifting.

And for those who fancy a traditional Christmas dinner, but doesn’t have a huge kitchen to prepare them can have their sumptuous meal at a 5-star hotel or at city pubs. There is a long list of places to choose from and make sure to plan and make your reservations early.

Lastly, for expats or foreign residents that are lucky enough to have their 2 week holiday break, they can opt for quieter places and spend the days outside Bangkok, if not outside the country. Thailand may not be freezing cold this season but up north is colder than most months. Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai are two of the most popular places not only for its cool weather, but for its nature adventure it offers as well. Visiting the highest point of Thailand, the peak of Doi Intanon National Park for one, is among the favorite. With this, packaged tour for mountain trail hiking and overnight camping in a tent and waking up on chilly wind with low clouds on mountain views is now available for adventurous locals and foreigners.

There may not have the traditional Christmas celebration in Thailand, but this amazing country offers as much as other places in the world to enjoy this joyous season.

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Manila Up! on its 2nd year anniversary! I am wishing many more years and success and growth, which came from print version to digital and now also on TV! Great job Manila Up! Team!! Congratulations as well to our lovely ladies who have reaped more recognition from “Gawad Amerika” this year for their talent and dedication. Also, this year marks my 1st year anniversary being part of Manila Up! team and I am very grateful for all the opportunities to be able to share Thailand to the world. My heartfelt gratitude to our publisher Ms. Sonia Bermejo for giving me the privilege of having my own corner, “Siam Living” in here.

From yours truly, all the way from Bangkok, Thailand, I am wishing everyone from whole Manila Up! Team, to our readers, supporters, sponsors and friends a joyous Merry Christmas with your loved ones!

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