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Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai
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  1. #1
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    Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    This festival celebrates one of Thailands most curious natural phenomena the Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai. Taking place during the full moon of the final day of Buddhist Lent, small balls of fire rise from the Mekong River and plunge upwards of 300 meters into the night sky. The fireballs appear as eerie blobs of red, blue, pink or green light that hang in the air for around 10 seconds. This fascinating spectacle has spiritual overtones manifested by the crowds and the presence of chanting monks. Folklore suggests that beneath this part of the Mekong River is the spirit world of the Naga. The events of the festival spur the Naga to leave their habitat and join in on the celebrations that commemorate the return of Lord Buddha. The fireballs form steps on which the Lord Buddha descends from heaven.

    If you have a chance to go t, this should not be missed. Alongside the fireballs themselves visitors are treated to a range of activities including floats and illuminated boat processions. The fireballs can be viewed from 18:00 to 02:00 but it is should be noted that although sometimes there are thousands of fireballs, on other occasions there might be only 20 or so the whole evening. Despite this, a good time is guaranteed.

    Good places where you can view the fireballs include Ban Nam Pay, Ban Ta Muang, Taan Choom, Pahk Kaad, Kaeng Aa-Hong, Amphur Beung Kan, Wat Aa-Hong Sila Wart, Ban Aa-Hong, Tambon Ho Kham, Amphur Beung Kan, Amphur Phon Phisai Amphur Rattana Wapi District, and Amphur Rak Kart.


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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    Thanks for those details pclev. I love the folklore behind this amazing festival but I think it's work mentioning the scientific explanation too.

    Scientists say that due to atmospherics, the action of the full moon at this particlar time of the year causes methane gas trapped deep under the river to be released. Upon contact with the air it ignites and rises into the air until it has burned out. I read this somewhere a few years ago - maybe even on Richard's blog.

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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    hi. i intend to go to nong khai for the spectacular fireball. it is my first time there so i would like to ask for help on where exactly in nong khai i should go? and where to take the bus from bangkok... pls help me! i am a singaporean and i think i will be traveling alone. will it be safe? do let me know of any additional information, meanwhile i will check on the internet websites. thank u

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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    The Fireballs rise out of the river so anywhere that has a good view of that should be a good place. The last paragraph of the first post lists quite a few good places where to see the fireballs, but keep in mind that as this is a natural phenomena some years are better than others.

    David
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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    It might be too late to make preparations to go this year as there is less than a month to the festival. Many of the hotels and guesthouses would have been fully booked by now. But it does not harm to call up a few places and ask if there are any vacancies.

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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    I asked in a previous post whether anyone had actually seen these fireballs and no-one had, or at least no-one said they had. I am a skeptic about such things but would love to be proved wrong by an eyewitness account.
    Ӽ

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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    i have asked a few of my friends from thailand and they have different reactions to this event too. but some encouraged me that i should go. haha. i wouldn't mind going because i dont have classes during that period (i'm doing an exchange at chula). I would love to give an eye witness account when i get back..if i eventually get to go. still considering between fullmoon at koh phagan or to go to nong kai(:

    more details of the event n abt nong khai ais welcomed!!~ hope to hear from more~

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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    I went 2 years ago. Sat on the bank of the river with thousands of others.

    Arrived about 2pm. Many races with traditional boats and a really fun atmosphere.

    It wasn't until dusk, that the first fireballs could be seen. All the observers cheering.

    Thais don't consider this to be a "natural phenomena", it is rooted deep in their religious beliefs. It is believed if one says something negative about it, it will bring them bad luck.

    The Thai side of the Mekong was packed, difficult to move anywhere. I noticed on the Laos side there was only a handful of people. If you fancy a quieter experience, perhaps viewing from the Laos side would be better.

    All in all a thoroughly enjoyable experience. I would recommend it to anyone.

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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    Quote Originally Posted by eebrak View Post
    hi. i intend to go to nong khai for the spectacular fireball. it is my first time there so i would like to ask for help on where exactly in nong khai i should go? and where to take the bus from bangkok... pls help me! i am a singaporean and i think i will be traveling alone. will it be safe? do let me know of any additional information, meanwhile i will check on the internet websites. thank u

    You can take the tour bus from Mo Chit, or would you rather go by train? Any one of these transportations will do, depends on the level of comfort for yourself. I took the tour bus with my bf and halfway down the journey, the bus allowed a few other passengers in and they had to sit along the gangway. To me it's ok, as long as my bf is around with me, I don't know for you if you're alone. Consider taking the train/plane would be safer and more comfortable for you?

    Check this sites for further information of the transportation :

    - Train
    - Bus, Train and Air Schedules
    (Nong Khai is in the North-east check out the North-east/Isan Lines)
    ---------------------------------------------------


    rclev mentioned under his post, the few amphoes where you can see the event. Or you may contact the TAT for more information of the event. My bf told me that not every year the fireballs can be seen, sometimes, there's none at all. So it depends on your luck then. =D


    Good luck.

    شá͡þ ش͡èҡ..
    ѡͧҡ ըҡͧ..

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    Re: Naga Fireballs of Nong Khai

    Quote Originally Posted by 5tash View Post
    It wasn't until dusk, that the first fireballs could be seen.
    Did you actually see them yourself? If so, could you please describe exactly what you saw.
    Ӽ

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