If you visit Bangkok during December you may be surprised at just how many areas of the city are lit up with special decorations. The birthday of the King of Thailand is on December 5 and in his honour, parts of the city are beautifully illuminated. Fairy lights are strung up in trees lining the roads outside the Grand Palace and along Sanam Luang. The decorations continue all along Ratchadamnoen Avenue and towards Ananta Samakhom Throne Hall and the royal Dusit area.
Decorations along Ratchadamnoen Nok and Ratchadamnoen Klang
Lights in front of the Grand Palace (above) and at Wat Ratchanada and Loha Prasat (below)
Whilst most people in Thailand are Buddhists, Bangkok is a cosmopolitan city and has cheerfully adopted Christmas. This is partly because of the glitz and sanuk that goes hand-in-hand with the festive period, but it’s also a case of businesses realising there is money to be made. Nevertheless, the colourful displays outside Central World and various other Bangkok shopping malls are impressive and have all been done with a distinct Thai style.
Christmas display outside Central World, Bangkok
For the second year running, Bangkok has hosted the ‘Kingdom of Light’ art exhibition running from mid-December until early January. The Ratchaprasong area has been transformed at night with stunning interactive light displays. The Skywalk connecting Chitlom and Siam Skytrain stations is a kaleidoscope of colours with soothing ambient music adding to the effect. Underneath the Skywalk, a curtain of light tumbles down. The busy Ratchaprasong Intersection and the Erawan Shrine have also been illuminated with the special light features making for a dazzling display.
Skywalk at Ratchaprasong Intersection linking Siam and Chitlom BTS Skytrain stations
Light display at Erawan Shrine