Makha Bucha Day (may also be written as Maka Puja and various other combinations) is an important public holiday in Thailand which commemorates the event where 1,250 of the Lord Buddha’s disciples spontaneously gathered to hear him preach. This particular holiday usually falls in February or March, but like many Buddhist holidays the exact date varies depending on the lunar cycle.
In the morning, Thai Buddhists may make merit by giving alms to monks. In the evening, temples will be busy and many Thai Buddhists will perform the candle ceremony known as ‘wian tian’ (wian=circle tian=candle). This involves a person holding a lighted candle, incense and flowers as they walk around the main hall (bot) or chedi of the temple.
Government offices are closed and many bars and clubs will tone down their activities for the day which could mean no music and no alcohol.