JULY 31 AUGUST 1, 2004
Thung Si Mueang, Ubon Ratchathani

"Timeless Thai Elegance", the Thailand Grand Festival theme for July, highlights the Candle Festival of Ubon Ratchathani province, an annual event on the Thailand Calendar of Events.

The festival features a great candle procession which reflects the devout belief in Buddhism, time-honoured traditions and rituals associated with "Khao Phansa" or the Buddhist Lent, as well as the beauty and uniqueness of the art and culture of the Northeastern region.

Ubon Ratchathani is home to a great number of craftsmen in several fields who continue to produce exceptional work in contemporary art, local handicrafts, Buddhist art and architecture, particularly the ornate work that adorn the temples of Ubon Ratchathani. The magnificent wax candles highlighted during The Candle Festival is the media by which local artisans express their artistic talent.

During the days of the festival, special displays, demonstrations and cultural presentations offer insight into local traditions, beliefs and way of life. For example, see how candles for religious worship are cast, learn about meditation techniques at Wat Nong Pa Phong Temple, and traditional chanting.

Visit communities and temples where candles are made and crafted two or three days before the Royal Candle Procession. Learn about the techniques and methods used as well as the designs applied to the candles. Witness the rituals performed for welcoming the procession.